Tag archives for gear

Is this a new era in sleeping comfort? Big-wall climber Andy Kirkpatrick has been using a synthetically insulated blanket, not a sleeping bag, for some of his biggest assaults, including a seven-day winter climb of the Eiger. And now comes a new brand, Rumpl, that makes just that — synthetic blankets. Rumpls are, in a…

For two months, I have traveled over 300 hours in the Colorado winter backcountry with one mission: to learn how we can all travel safer in avalanche territory. Statistically speaking, I should have already had some idea. Winter backcountry guides love to joke that women make smarter, less “ego-driven” decisions regarding avalanches and snow travel,…

See Cameron Lawson’s previous dispatches on Alaska’s Lost Coast >> A twinge of nervous energy flowed through my body as I entered the small, metal airport terminal in Yakutat in search of my companion for the Lost Coast expedition ahead. Amongst a dispersed crowd of tourists dressed in chic outdoor gear and a handful of…

In late July, writer-photographer-adventurer Cameron Lawson and a near stranger will use fat-tired bikes and packrafts to travel approximately 350 miles along Alaska’s Lost Coast. Getting from Yakutat to Juneau will take 14 to 17 days. The majority of this adventure is highly isolated and void of civilization and will entail lots of beach riding,…

The draw of the distant and inhospitable peaks of this world is in my blood. My father Alex Lowe and now stepfather Conrad Anker have enough first accents, daring rescues, and cardinal accomplishments in the high mountains all over the world to outdo most anyone in the history of the climbing. For a young man…

Nobody’s River is an all-women expedition on one of the world’s greatest and least known free-flowing rivers, the Amur.  The goal of the two-month, 4,400-kilometer project is to travel, document, and collect data on this incredible river from its remote Mongolian headwaters near the birthplace of Genghis Khan, across the vastness of the Russian Far…

See more of Jim Whittaker in this video and portrait gallery. Read more about the state of Mount Everest in the June issue of National Geographic. The first time I met 84-year-old Jim Whittaker, a giant both in height (6’5″) and spirit, he was literally throwing around the heavy (and sharp) ice ax he used…

Support the Economy—Get Outside!

When you head out outdoors to play, do you ever consider how you’re fueling the economy? Think about it. Sure, there’s the gear you buy—jackets, shoes, gloves, base layers, water bottles, skis, bikes, kayaks, fishing rods, carabiners, crampons, binoculars, car racks or whatever it is you need to equip yourself for adventure. But that’s not…

Outdoor writer and photographer Cameron Martindell shares his final preview of upcoming gear launches for fall/winter 2013 seen at the Outdoor Retailer show in Salt Lake City, Utah. In the opening scene, Cameron mentions the creative films by climber/illustrator Jeremy Collins. We’ll have Collins’s latest film and an interview up tomorrow. Then watch for Black…

Outdoor writer and photographer Cameron Martindell shares another preview of upcoming gear launches for fall/winter 2013 seen at the Outdoor Retailer show in Salt Lake City, Utah. It’s pretty hard not to get excited about these sweet down jackets, skis, ski boots, and more from Tilly’s, Outdoor Research, Scarpa (featuring top ski mountaineer Chris Davenport),…

There’s no doubt outdoor gear keeps getting better and better. Here writer and photographer Cameron Martindell shares a preview of some of the fall/winter 2013 gear shown at last week’s  Outdoor Retailer trade show in Salt Lake City, Utah. This episode features mountaineering legend Jim Whittaker on the Eddie Bauer gear used on the first…

Outdoor adventure reporter Cameron Martindell gets the scoop on next season’s skis and snowboards right from the slopes at Utah’s Solitude Mountain Resort. This on-snow demo day is part of the Outdoor Retailer trade show in Salt Lake City.

There’s something to be said for the outdoor industry: We have a lot of heart. Generally speaking, people are in this business because they love the outdoors and are passionate about creating products to enhance their adventures. And in my experience, it seems passionate people are caring people. So when Hurricane Sandy delivered a powerful…

Editor’s note: This is a follow-up to September 18, 2012 blog: Grand to Grand Ultra – Gear and Training for a 160 Mile Backpacking Race  My feet were trashed.  I had excruciating blisters on top of blisters, in between, front and back, on most of the toes and pads of my feet.  My right knee…

A lower section of the Grand Canyon, as seen from Cape Royal at the less-frequented but more-spectacular North Rim. Photograph by Alex Noriega, My Shot On September 23 at the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, 75 endurance athletes representing 15 different countries will take off on a self-supported, seven day, six stages,160-mile, adventure called…

While on their way to the summit, the National Geographic Everest team will contend with many expeditious foils, including lack of appetite, decreasing atmospheric pressure, dubious weather, and no doubt the big chill. But regardless if you are chopping steps at 8,000 meters or kicking glides on spring snow, the laws of thermodynamics universally apply.…

What do you pack for the world’s tallest peak? Here’s what ski mountaineer Hilaree O’Neill is bringing to Everest, where she is part of our spring 2012 expedition sponsored by National Geographic and The North Face (learn more about the expedition). Though her main objective is to summit via the Southeast Ridge with her teammates,…

"From day one, the women have been screaming and yelling, 'Where’s our stuff?' And we’ve taken notice," said Jeremy Jones, who we recently interviewed about his snowsports alliance Protect Our Winters (POW) (follow POW on Facebook for informing and entertaining posts). "It’s really common to see a lot of women in the backcountry freeriding," he noted. "Women…

By Kim Havell When you are skiing powder in Canada’s Selkirk mountain range, Research and Development is a very good job. Companies often want to see how their prototype product works in the field, so somebody’s got to do it. In the sports realm, team athletes are often called upon to use and critique their…

If you needed an excuse to upgrade your gear, we have it. June is Great Outdoors Month and National Camping Month. Better show your support by getting out there…and maybe with an awesome new tent or sleeping bag or light hiker. We asked Steve Casimiro, veteran gear reviewer and editor of Adventure Journal, to give…

By Contributing Editor Steve Casimiro, editor of Adventure Journal. See more of Casimiro's gear recommendations in our must-have gear gallery >> After five days in Utah at the Outdoor Retailer Winter Market in search of the best new products from 800 brands and 18,000 attendees, I returned home with a swag count of two pairs…

By National Geographic Adventure Contributing Editor Steve Casimiro, editor of The Adventure LifeA few years ago, an outdoor apparel manufacturer was showing me a line of tops for men and women. All the chickie pieces had hoods available, but none of the men’s. “We can’t sell hoodies to guys in outdoor shops,” he said, which…

By National Geographic Adventure Contributing Editor Steve Casimiro, editor ofThe Adventure Life One of the cardinal rules of s'mores is that you don't promise what you can't deliver. All the fixin's were laid out and ready to go—dark chocolate, cinnamon graham crackers, marshmallows—and I started to build the fire. But the wood was so damp it…

Adventurer Andrew Skurka has now been skiing, snowshoeing, and trekking for almost two months of his 4,700-mile expedition through Alaska and the Yukon. When he's done in October, he will have crossed through six U.S. national parks and two Canadian national parks, floated some of North America's wildest rivers, and hiked the Alaska and Brooks…

Today adventurer Andrew Skurka begins an ambitious, seven-month expedition that will take him 4,720 miles across Alaska and the Yukon by skis, foot, and raft. Follow his blog dispatches here and his tweets via twitter.com/andrewskurka. The contents of my pack are almost entirely need based. During this trip, my legitimate needs will include staying hydrated…