Los Angeles photographer Carlos Serrao has shot a host of star athletes, from Usain Bolt to Kobe Bryant. But photographing decathlete Trey Hardee ("Notes From an Alchemist") presented new challenges. "The idea was to get him doing all of the decathlon events," says Serrao, "but it was impossible, because there are so many." Instead they focused on some of the more recognizable ones: javelin, shot put, and high jump. "We had him do the high jump from a standstill so he didn't have to run each time," says Serrao. "At first the bar was at his wasit, and he was like, 'Let's raise it.' So he raised it to his chin and, from a standstill, he just flops over it with no problem. Everyone watching was like, 'How is that even possible?'"
To report "The Vanishing," about the disappearance of at least 18 women over the past four decades on a remote stretch of highway in northern British Columbia, Bob Friel, who lives on Washington's Orcas Island, visited many of the places where the missing were last seen. "It's a gorgeous, atmospheric area," says Friel, whose latest book, The Barefoot Bandit, was excerpted in Outside's March issue. "But you get sucked into the creepiness of the story." One of the more vivid characters: the road itself. "It's desolate, it's rain-slicked, it winds around dark cliffs, and there's often thick fog flowing in from the Skeena River," says Friel. "When you've got all this going on, plus these unsolved disappearances, the road takes on a haunting personality all its own."
Research editor Ryan Krogh performed triple duty on this issue: reporting "Notes From an Alchemist," our cover profile of decathlete Trey Hardee; interviewing swimmer Ryan Lochte; and serving as our dog-training expert for "The Ultimate Outdoor Companion" To do it all, he was forced to bail on a backcountry ski trip and gear test in April that saw 17 inches of fresh powder. "I felt like I was the only one in the office," says Krogh, who oversees the magazine's fact-checking department. "It was terrible." We asked Outside's fact-checkers to confirm that he was the only one stuck at his desk that weekend. Their response: a resounding yes.
If done right, an adventure day trip can be just as satisfying as a bigger mission. If not, it can be way more stressful. To make the most of your summer, you’ll want to plan a few ambitious day trips (lest you spend every Saturday watching your kid ride his bike around the same 1/16th-mile lap in the park). But you gotta be smart—and organized. It's a little bit art, a little bit luck, and a lot of science. Here are 5 great day trips to take with your kids.
Finally, you will undoubtedly have a moment between Cal 2 and Auburn Lakes Trails when you feel like you need a Quad Transplant. I got news for you, everyone feels this way. The downhill pounding you put your legs through at Western States grinds the muscles in your quads into sausage. Don’t let it bother you. Yes, one can experience excruciating muscle damage at Western States, but if you have damage that bad, you’ll most certainly know it will feel like Ray Lewis is thrusting two ice picks into your quads with each foot plant. Assuming the pain you’re experiencing is less severe than that, just slow down, stay hydrated, and shuffle on. —An excerpt of a letter from ultrarunner Andy Jones-Wilkins to competitors in the 2012 Western States 100
Some of the best ultrarunners in the world will line up in Squaw Valley, California, tomorrow morning for the start of the Western States 100. If they finish, they will climb more than 17,000 feet, descend more than 22,000 feet, and have at least some moments on relatively flat ground as they run, walk, or crawl in the summer heat over the course of 100.2 miles to Auburn, California. This all started as a horse race, but in 1974 a guy named Gordy Ainsleigh decided to see if he could run with the animals. Below is an excerpt of his account.
Biking is tiring in a really satisfying way. Hammer all day on a bike and you'll feel fulfilled and ready for food and rest. Driving in a car for four hours after hammering all day is brutal. Packed into the backseat with your teammates, your feet swell and even if you sleep you're not rested.
Like the athletes who do the Giro Donne, we packed into the Renault—with three in the back and two up front, and we drove south into the heat. It was midnight before we got to bed and yet we left the next morning at 7 a.m. to drive another four to five hours to the start of our Stage 4, the 2007 Stage 2, from Ca' Tiepolo di Porto Tolle to Rosolina Mare.
This week, on the unseasonably dry slopes of Park City, Utah, two dozen bike manufacturers rolled out their 2013 product lines to a handful of journalists. The biggest talk in bikes was of 650B, the (re)new(ed) ‘tweener wheel size—it’s approximately halfway between a 26 and a 29—that’s set to flood the mountain bike market this year. There was also lots of excitement about disc brakes for road and cross, as well as a renaissance in steel and titanium bikes. Here, we present the five most interesting bikes we saw this week; we’ll be getting them for comprehensive testing in the coming months. Stay tuned for Episode 2’s roundup of compelling soft goods, electronics, and gadgets.
1. TURNER BURNER Though it looks like both the Five Spot and the Sultan (respectively the Murrieta, California, bike manufacturer’s 140mm 26- and 29-inch bikes), the Burner sits right in between with 650B-size wheels. The new size, which is actually an old French standard that is now making a resurgence, is touted as being as quick and snappy as smaller wheels but still having the momentum and rolling benefits of bigger ones. We absolutely loved the Turner Sultan we tested last year. But we have to admit that where it felt a bit portly on steep climbs and a touch ponderous in tight turns, the Burner seemed peppy all around. It’s the vanguard of a whole fleet of 650B bikes and related products rolling out next year.