Happy 40th Anniversary Outside Magazine!

2017 marks the 40th anniversary of Outside magazine, and the venerable periodical has been celebrating all year long with a number of special articles. But now, the Outside website has launched an official anniversary section that is a stroll down memory lane for those of us who have read it for years, serving as an amazing look back at some of the most memorable stories of all time.

On the webpage for the 40th anniversary you’ll find reflections on what it was like to publish Jon Krakauer’s seminal work Into Thin Air, how the magazine survived a tumultuous time in the late 90’s when many of its writers moved on, and much more. You’ll find current stories about an antarctic expedition that went terribly wrong, a look at whether or not Lance Armstrong actually regrets doping, and a story about Reinhold Messner and Peter Habler climbing Everest without oxygen for the very first time. You’ll also find a nice piece on the the stories that have inspired the Outside team, and a thoughtful letter from the editorreflecting on the past 40 years.

For fans of the outdoors, adventure, and exploration there is a lot to take in on this single webpage alone. In fact, almost every story there is worth a read and you’ll probably find yourself finishing up one, just to move on to the next. Some of the articles are classics from Outside‘s past, while others are fascinating stories of things happening right now. In short, it is a wonderful mix of why we have come to love the magazine so much over the past 40 years. For four decades it has found ways to educate, fascinate, and inspire. Hopefully that won’t end anytime soon.

Here’s to 40 more years Outside!

Check out the 40th anniversary page here.

Autor : Kraig Becker

* source: –  Happy 40th Anniversary OutsideMagazine!

** see also: –

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Gear Closet: Salewa Mountain Trainer Mid GTX Boots Review.

In need of a new pair of technical hiking boots for your upcoming adventures? If so, you’ll want to add the new Mountain Trainer Mid GTX from Salewa to your list of potential options. This lightweight, yet sturdy and durable, boot offers excellent performance on a variety of terrains, and will keep your feet comfortable and dry no matter where the trail takes you.

Boasting a traditional suede upper, paired with a Gore-Tex lining, and a Vibram outsole, the Mountain Trainer has been built for alpine pursuits. The boot is perfect for scrambling over ice and snow, mud, rocks, and other surfaces you’re bound to run into on your treks, offering good stability and support in both dry and wet conditions.

Perhaps the most impressive element of the Mountain Trainer is their impressive fit. When I initially took them out of the box, my first reaction was that the boots felt a bit stiff, but after wearing them around the house for awhile, they loosened up nicely and were soon broken in for the trail. But, Salewa has taken great care to ensure that these boots are incredibly comfortable to wear for extended periods of time, and to that end the insoles not only offer great cushioning, but they actually mold themselves to fit the specific contours of your feet as you were them longer. The result is a shoe that gets increasingly comfortable as you hike. The lacing system even allows the wearer to dial in an even better fit, selecting the tension as needed.

The “Mid” version of the Mountain Trainer offers terrific ankle support as well, although if you prefer a low cut, Salewa does offer that version of the shoe too. Personally, I prefer having a bit of extra protection for my ankles when hiking more difficult and rocky trails, but the added support does come at the expense of extra weight. These boots tip the scales at 1.4 pounds, which means that they fall squarely into the average weight category. But when you consider the traction, comfort, and protection they provide, it feels like the Mountain Trainers actually perform above their weight class.

I’ve put these boots to the test in several different parts of the country this spring – including Idaho and California – and have found them to be an excellent boot in a variety of different conditions. On each hike, not only did my feet stay very comfortable, they also didn’t overheat when things started to get more active. That said, they may not be the best option for warm-weather adventures, but you don’t often run into those types of conditions at altitude, even during the summer. The Gore-Tex lining on the Mountain Trainer does a reasonably good job of remaining breathable while also keeping moisture out, but its very existence makes this a boot that is bested used in cooler temps for sure.

So far, durability has been quite good on the Mountain Trainers. I’ve seen one or two reviews online that have indicated that that wasn’t the case over the long haul, but I can honestly say that my pair of boots look none the worse for wear, even after putting them through their paces on mud, snow, and rocks. In fact, I’d be hard pressed to find a scuff mark or blemish on them anywhere at this point, which generally leads me to believe that they should hold up fine over the course of time.

The Mountain Trainer Mid GTX is a serious boot for serious hikers and peak baggers. It was built to go places where the average trekker probably won’t wander, and provide solid performance and protection along the way. As such, it carries a price tag of $249.95, which is on the pricer end of the scale for hiking boots. But those who push themselves to the limit on the trail will appreciate everything that this boot brings to the table, which easily separates itself from lesser boots that are designed for light hiking and a day in town, rather than alpine pursuits in remote backcountry. If you don’t need that kind of performance, you may be better served looking elsewhere. But if you’re an outdoor athlete who likes to explore far off the beaten path, this is a great boot for you. You won’t be disappointed in what you find here, as the Mountain Trainer is an amazing blend of comfort, security, and stability that isn’t found in just any piece of footwear.

Buy at REI.com.

Autor : Kraig Becker

* source: – Gear Closet: Salewa Mountain Trainer Mid GTX Boots Review

** see also: – https://himalman.wordpress.com/category/gear/

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Traveling to California – The Lost Coast Trail with Tepui Tents.

As we round out the week, just a quick note on blog updates for next week. I’ll be starting the month of May with a quick trip to California where I’ll be testing out a Tepui Tents rooftop tent while spending a couple of days hiking on the Lost Coast Trail. This gives me the opportunity to not only see a place that I’ve heard so much about, but also test out some gear as well. I’ve been wanting to checkout Tepui’s shelters for some time now, and this will be a great chance to do just that.

I depart early on Monday and will be back early on Thursday, so there is a good chance there won’t be any updates until next Friday. But should a big story break, there is a chance I’ll be able to post something to the blog before then. In the meantime, have a great weekend, enjoy the spring weather, and I’ll be back before you know it.

After this trip, I don’t have anything planned for a few weeks, which means I should be around for summit season in the Himalaya. Always an exciting time of year for sure.

Autor : Kraig Becker

* source: – Traveling to California – The Lost Coast Trail with Tepui Tents

** see also: – https://himalman.wordpress.com/category/video/

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Everest Climbing Gear – Then and Now.

National Geographic has another interesting article and photo gallery up today, this time taking a look at the past and present gear used on Everest. The slideshow contains a number of fantastic images, and each one focuses on a particular topic, such as “communications” and “insulation layers,” with information what was used when Hillary and Norgay completed the first ascent, versus the gear that the rank and file mountaineers are using now.

Today’s climbers are outfitted with highly technical apparel, a host of gadgets, and gear that offers an amazing weight-to-performance ratio. Everything from the boots they wear to the tents they stay in have improved dramatically over the past 60+ years. With all of the advanced fabrics and space-age materials at our disposal, it is easier to climb lighter, faster, and more comfortably than ever before, which is part of the reason so many more people are making the attempt.

So just how different was it back in 1953? In the Nat Geo article we learn that Hillary and Norgay couldn’t use wireless communications higher up on the mountain, so they communicated by laying out their sleeping bags in a particular pattern that could be seen below. Today, walkie-talkies, sat phones, satellite messengers, and even cell phones can be used to communicate from any point on Everest, including the summit.

Similarly, the tents used on the first ascent where heavy and bulky. Those shelters were made from cotton, and were often crowded, uncomfortable, and very heavy. In contrast, today’s tents are surprisingly strong, lightweight, and warm, even at higher altitudes. Every aspect and component of a tent has been upgraded, making them easier to carry and assemble, even when the weather turns bad.

The story is a fun one and well worth a read for Everest fans and gear junkies alike. Lots of good information here comparing climbing now to then. You’re likely to come away with even more respect for those early Everest climbers.

Autor : Kraig Becker

* source: – Everest Climbing Gear – Then and Now

** see also – https://himalman.wordpress.com/category/gear/

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Traveling to California – The Lost Coast Trail with Tepui Tents.

As we round out the week, just a quick note on blog updates for next week. I’ll be starting the month of May with a quick trip to California where I’ll be testing out a Tepui Tents rooftop tent while spending a couple of days hiking on the Lost Coast Trail. This gives me the opportunity to not only see a place that I’ve heard so much about, but also test out some gear as well. I’ve been wanting to checkout Tepui’s shelters for some time now, and this will be a great chance to do just that.

I depart early on Monday and will be back early on Thursday, so there is a good chance there won’t be any updates until next Friday. But should a big story break, there is a chance I’ll be able to post something to the blog before then. In the meantime, have a great weekend, enjoy the spring weather, and I’ll be back before you know it.

After this trip, I don’t have anything planned for a few weeks, which means I should be around for summit season in the Himalaya. Always an exciting time of year for sure.

Autor : Kraig Becker

* source: – Traveling to California – The Lost Coast Trail with Tepui Tents

** see also: – https://himalman.wordpress.com/category/travel/

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Gear Closet: EcoFlow River Portable Generator Review.

The options available to us for keeping our electronic devices charged while in remote regions continue to grow. A couple of weeks back I took a look at the Renogy Phoenix Solar Generator and found it to be a powerful and full featured – if a bit heavy – method for staying charged while on the go. Now, I’ve gotten my hands on another portable generator called the EcoFlow River that will be available soon, and it brings some more intriguing possibilities to the market.

Currently, the River is only available for preorder on Indiegogo, but the device is already fully-funded and should begin shipping in July of this year. In fact, the River has been such a success on the crowdfunding site that it’s designers had hoped to raise $30,000 to get it into production, but have already raked in more than $400,000 with more than two weeks to go before the campaign ends. In other words, people already want this gadget and it is a major success before it even goes on sale.

I’ve been lucky enough to get to test out a pre-production model of the River, and have found it to be an incredibly well made product. Everything about the generator screams high quality, from the excellent case (complete with handle on top), to the LCD screen that provides info on the amount of power in the device, and how it is being used, to the plethora of ports to keep our gadgets charged. In terms of lightweight, portable generators with lots of power, this is the most well thought out and best designed version I’ve seen yet.

With its 116,000 mAh battery and 500-watt output, the River is capable of recharging a smartphone up to 30 times and a laptop as many as 9 times depending on the model. Additionally, it can power a projector or mini-refrigerator for 10 hours, and recharger a drone 4-8 times as well. This makes it a great tool to have at base camp, whether you’re working in the field or spending an extended amount of time in the backcountry. And since it is waterproof resistant, offers built-in surge protection, and weights just 11 pounds, its an excellent companion for use on our adventures.

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Nat Geo Posts 2017 Spring/Summer Gear Guide.

Now that April is all but behind us, it is pretty safe to say that spring is in full swing and summer isn’t all that far off either. Of course, that means it is time to head back outside an enjoy all of the activities that the warmer months have to offer. Of course, the changing of the seasons is also the perfect excuse to add some new gear to your arsenal as well, and National Geographic is here to help.

The Nat Geo Adventure website had posted its Spring/Summer 2017 Gear Guide, offering up 20 new products that you’ll want to have at your disposal this year. As usual, the list includes a wide variety of items ranging from clothing to shoes to tents and much more. If you’re in the market for some gear, chances are you’ll find a good suggestion here on what you should consider buying.

Amongst the items making the cut are the new Suunto Spartan GPS watch, the Sugoi Zap cycling jacket, and  the Voormi River Run hoody, which I’ve also reviewed on this blog. Other products that earned a spot on the Nat Geo list include the Nano-Air jacket from Patagonia, the Nemo Wagontop 4P tent, and the Gregory Paragon 48 backpack.

This is, of course, just a taste of the items that are recommended by Nat Geo’s expert gear tester. There are plenty of other products on the list for you yet to discover. So go gear up and head outside. I’m sure you’ll find plenty of good ways to put your new toys to the test.

Autor : Kraig Becker

* source: – Nat Geo Posts 2017 Spring/Summer Gear Guide

** see also: – https://himalman.wordpress.com/category/gear/

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