Google and Discovery Join Forces for Virtual Reality Travel Series.

Tech giant Google and media outlet Discovery Channel have joined forces to create what promises to be quite the interesting travel experience. The new Discovery TRVLR series uses virtual reality to take viewers on a 38-episode, globe spanning, adventure that visits all seven continents. The episodes will be available on YouTube and the Discovery VR website, as well as in the Discovery VR app for iOS and Android, as well as various VR headsets.

The actual series isn’t set to debut officially until November 3, but according to the show’s website, the first season will take viewers to Auckland, Hanoi, Mexico City, Yerevan, Cape Town, La Paz and Antarctica. Along the way, they’ll get to meet locals, see the landscapes, and immerse themselves in the culture without ever leaving home.

The show will feature 7 chapters, each of which focuses on one of the continents. The chapters for North and South America, Europe, Africa, Asia, and Australia will be made up of six episodes each, while Antarctica will see two episodes. Viewers will be introduced to four different personalities on each continent, the Guru, the Renegade, the Entertainer and the Explorer.

Of course, there is no substitute for real travel and actually visiting these places, but this looks like a promising use of VR technology. I’m told that it isn’t just a 360º video shot using a special camera, but will be fully immersive stereoscopic virtual reality, which should make for an impressive experience, particularly on higher end devices.

Production of the series reportedly has taken more than three months, with some shooting and editing still ongoing. The recent earthquake in Mexico disrupted the crew to a degree, and there are still other locations to capture in VR before the show makes its official debut in a few weeks time.

You can check out the teaser trailer Discovery TRVLR below. Then grab yourself a pair of Google Daydream VR goggles or even Google Cardboard, and get ready to span the globe.

Autor : Kraig Becker

* source: – Google and Discovery Join Forces for Virtual Reality Travel Series

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

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50 Parks to Visit in 50 U.S. States.

The U.S. has always been at the forefront of creating public lands for its citizens and foreign visitors to explore. After all, the country was the first to designate a national park when Yellowstone was first created way back in 1872. Today, there are fantastic parks to explore in every state in the Union, and Popular Mechanics wants to help you discover the best ones.

In a slideshow entitled “50 States, 50 Parks” readers will go through each state in alphabetical order, with the individual slides providing some information on the absolute best park to visit at that particular destination. So, for example, in Alaska you’ll learn that Denali National Park has earned a spot on the list, which is no small feat when you consider the fantastic national parks that exist there. The slide not only contains a brief explanation for what makes Denali special, but an epic photo from the location as well.

Other great parks that make the cut include Grand Canyon (Arizona), Yosemite (California), Starved Rock State Park (Illinois), and Mammoth Cave in Kentucky. I’ll leave the remaining 45 parks for you to discover, as it is a lot of fun to see what choices were made for each state.

It’s no secret that I’m a huge fan of the national parks, but there are some pretty spectacular state parks to be found as well. Thankfully, this list doesn’t count them out and you’re likely to discover plenty of new places to add to your “must visit” list. Check out the entire slideshow here.

Autor : Kraig Becker

* source: – 50 Parks to Visit in 50 U.S. States

** see also: –

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Backapcker Gives Us 13 Great Last Minute Holiday Gifts for Hikers.

The clock is ticking on the 2017 holiday season, and Christmas is only a few days away now. If you’re still scrambling to find the perfect gift for the outdoor lover in your life, Backpacker magazine is here to help with its picks for the 13 best last-minute gifts for the hikers.

The list is a good one, offering all kinds of suggestions. And with prices ranging from just $13, all the way up to $450, there truly is something for everyone here. Amongst the gear that makes the cut are an inflatable camping pillow from Klymit, a daypack from The North Face, and a solar charger from Revel. You’ll also find jackets, socks, and other apparel, as well as a backpack for your dog.

Backpacker has put together an eclectic list here, with some really thoughtful items that many hikers wouldn’t consider getting for themselves, but would love to have as a gift. Each of the items that made he cut are high quality and really useful in a variety of outdoor settings. They also come from top brands that we all know and love, making them easy to recommend as well.

If you’re still wondering what you should buy the hiker on your list, don’t panic. You still have a bit of time. But you might want to click here to see what Backpacker recommends just in case.

Autor : Kraig Becker

* source: – Backapcker Gives Us 13 Great Last Minute Holiday Gifts for Hikers

** see also: – Best Xmas presents.

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A Holiday Shopping Guide for Adventure Travelers.

All week long I’m sharing some holiday shopping suggestions for gifts for the outdoor and adventure lover in your life. On Monday I posted some gift ideas for the hiker and backpacker and yesterday I offered some suggestions for the outdoor athlete. Today, we’ll take a look at the top gifts for the adventure traveler with a wide variety of items to make life on the road more enjoyable.

Yeti Panga 75 Duffel ($350)
There are waterproof duffel bags and then there is the Yeti Panga 75 duffel. As you would expect from a duffel built by Yeti, this bag is practically indestructible. And thanks to the use of the hydrolock zipper, the bag can be completely submersed in water and still keep its contents completely dry. Whether your paddling the Amazon or hiking to Everest Base Camp, the Panga will keep your gear safe, secure, and dry.

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Visiting Everest? You’ll Soon Have to Pay a Little More.

Planning on trekking to Everest Base Camp in the future? If so, it looks like you’ll have to pay a bit more as the local government in Nepal has instituted a new fee. But don’t panic, it isn’t enough to cancel your plans or break your pocket book.

According to The Himalayan Times, the Khumbu Pasang Lhamu Rural Municipality in the Solukhumbu District – which is where Everest is located – had decided to impose an entry fee on all foreign visitors. The new fee will go into effect on October 1 and will set travelers back Rs 2000. That equates to about $20.

According to the new constitution passed in Nepal, local governments now have the right to impose such taxes and fees. This is the first time that any region has taken advantage of this option however, as the local government looks to claim a bit of revenue from the more than 35,000 people that visit the Khumbu Valley each year. Most come for trekking and mountaineering purposes.

The money will be used to create improvements in infrastructure throughout the Khumbu and to promote sustainable tourism in the region as well. But, the fear is that the money will be mismanaged by the local government, with much of the revenue somehow finding its way into the hands of politicians rather than actually being put to good use. There are also concerns about more districts across Nepal following suit, possibly charging an entry fee every time a traveler comes and goes. If that were to become the case, it could get a lot more expensive to visit Nepal, keeping some tourists from ever going there.

For now, plans are moving ahead to impose the new tax, despite protests from within the tourism sector. Just what kind of impact it will have remains to be seen however, but it is important that travelers know what to expect when they arrive. A $20 fee isn’t too serious, but multiple $20 fees start to add up quickly. Plan accordingly and take advantage of the time that you spend in a region, particularly the Solukhumbu area. Hopefully, this will be an exception to the rule for traveling in Nepal and not the new normal.

Autor : Kraig Becker

* source: –Visiting Everest? You’ll Soon Have to Pay a Little More

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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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Video: A Relaxing Hour in Yellowstone.

Have you had a rough start to your week? Did Monday come way too quickly? Perhaps this video can help. It comes our way courtesy of National Geographic and is just over an hour in length. I’m sure that sounds way too long, but it is an hour of life in Yellowstone National Park, which is always a place worth visiting, either virtually or in real life. So, if you’re in need of a bit of relaxation, sit back and soak it all in. You won’t be disappointed.

Autor : Kraig Becker

* source: –Video: A Relaxing Hour in Yellowstone

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

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