The Outside Blog

Skiing and Snowboarding : Dec 2012

Greg LeMond to Run for President of the UCI

5030351225_1be5d728c0_bGreg LeMond at Interbike. Photo: Interbike/Flickr

Former Tour de France champion Greg LeMond said he plans to take on Pat McQuaid for the presidency of the UCI after being asked this past weekend at the Change Cycling Now conference in London. The conference included cyclists, drug officials, and sports journalists who met to figure out a way to clean up the sport.

“If we want to restore public confidence and sponsors, we must act quickly and decisively," LeMond told French newspaper Le Monde. "Otherwise, cycling will die. Riders do not understand that if we continue like this, there will soon be no money in cycling.”

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The End of the Japanese Ninja

There still are real, practicing ninjas in Japan—but that won’t be the case for much longer. According to the Iga-ryu Ninja Museum, 63-year-old Jinichi Kawakami of the Koka clan is the country’s last living ninja grandmaster. However, 80-year-old Masaaki Hatsumi claims he is also the leader of Togakure clan. So, there might be two living ninjas, but neither one plans to name an heir, which means the end of the ninja in Japan. Both men have day jobs—Kawakami is an engineer; Hatsumi runs an international martial-arts organization—and they claim that the ways of the ninja just don’t serve much purpose today. "In the age of civil wars or during the Edo period, ninjas' abilities to spy and kill, or mix medicine may have been useful," Kawakami said. “But we now have guns, the Internet, and much better medicines, so the art of ninjutsu has no place in the modern age."

Via BBC

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Small French Town Is Apocalypse Haven

Rumors and speculation spread by doomsday cults have turned the small farming community of Bugarach, France, into an apocalypse destination. Anyone in the vicinity of the town’s nearby Pic de Bugarach will supposedly be spared on December 21, 2012, the date of the Mayan Apocalypse, when aliens emerge from the mountain and rescue anyone in the vicinity.

While the village’s 176 residents may not believe this, they are more than willing to accommodate those who do. As UFO watchers and Armageddon tourists flock to the town, locals are selling everything they can, from chunks of Pic de Bugarach’s rock face to water from the local spring at $20 a bottle. One landowner is even renting his house overlooking the peak for over $1,500 per night. “I possess a rare asset,” he told a local paper. “The land of immortality.”

Bugarach mayor Jean Pierre Delord has requested additional police presence in the town to help deal with the influx of tourists, many of whom have attempted to climb the mountain.

Via The Daily Mail

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Chrissie Wellington to Retire From Ironman

Ironman World Championship course record holder Chrissie Wellington has announced that she will retire from competition. Wellington, who had taken off the 2012 season, said Monday that she would like to go out on the 2011 Hawaii Ironman, where she managed to overcome several injuries to compete in the race. “As an athlete I sought ‘the perfect race,’” Wellington said. “That race within myself where I dug to the depths mentally and physically, and that hard-fought race with my competitors. The World Ironman Championships in 2011 was the icing on the cake for me as an athlete. It was my ‘perfect race’ and it ‘completed’ me.” The 35-year-old athlete is a four-time Ironman World Champion and undefeated in the Ironman distance.

Via Triathlete

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A Road Trip Timelapse Across the U.S.A., With Background

Push Pop Press co-founder Mike Matas chronicled his two-week-long, 3,000-mile, San Francisco to New York City road trip in the above three-minute-long, 5,000-photo timelapse posted to Vimeo. We've shown plenty of such road trip videos on the site before, but what's different about Matas' project is that he also made a website where viewers can gather more info about each picture. On MikeMatas.com, you can click on buttons at the bottom of each photo to check the location, see the lens used, and order a print.

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