North & Central America

36. Get Bent

When the North Shore's Waimea Bay breaks, usually only a few times each winter, surfers head to its outer reef, where waves can reach more than 20 feet. Which leaves the crushing beach break free...

10. Catch a Steelhead on a Spey Rod

Spey casting, a two-handed Old World technique devised to catch ill-tempered salmon, is not just for the aesthetics. Steelhead are basically bulldozers with scales; they demand heavy equipment....

5. Become a Bush Pilot

It's easier to pull off than it should be. Says Dan Rice, who flew for Alaska's Homer Air Service for a summer: "You just have to be persistent and a little lucky. I didn't know anyone or take an...

2. Self-Guide the Grand Canyon

It's like winning the lottery—literally. While anyone can drop $5,000 to sign up for a commercial raft trip down these 277 miles of the legendary Colorado River, running your own requires a Park...

49. Climb the Grand Teton

You'll breathe hard. You'll be scared. It'll take two days. That's the appeal: This iconic, 13,770-foot fang of granite is tough and technical--but still a reasonable goal, even if you're a rock...

Cold Call: Sebastian Steudtner

OUTSIDE: How does a German even get into surfing?STEUDTNER: In 2001, I came to Hawaii on a student-exchange program, and while there my friend introduced me to a...

Steamed

Around 10 A.M. on July 20, 2009, a slight breeze started to pick up on Matinicus Island, Maine, the most remote inhabited island on the eastern seaboard. Alan Miller eased his...

Best Towns 2010: Mammoth Lakes, CA

With a world-class ski resort (Mammoth Mountain Ski Area) and the second-largest contiguous wilderness area in the lower 48 (John Muir and others) off the back porch, Mammoth Lakes (pop. 7,392)...

Best Towns 2010: Ashland, Oregon

POPULATION 20,996MEDIAN HOME PRICE $395,000HOMETOWN HERO Hal Koerner, two-time Western States 100 winner, owner of Ashland's Rogue...

Best Towns 2010: Kailua-Kona, Hawaii

Kona (pop. 30,889) might be better known as the site of the Ironman World Championships, but the surfing is so good that it used to be reserved for island royalty. Newbies will find gentler...

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