The Outside Blog

Skiing and Snowboarding : Travel

Liquid: The VRBO of Bikes

Spinlister

Bicycling is the best way to see a city.

If you agree with that statement, you'll want to sign up with liquid.com. It's a new worldwide network of bike owners and would-be bike renters that seeks to connect the two groups with an ease never before attained. Through Liquid, bike owners rent their bikes to travelers, cyclists, and even bike-less locals that are just looking to get in a bit of exercise or exploration time in over 400 cities in 80 countries.

The initiative launched in New York City and San Francisco last April, and in September it started a national beta program.

Read More

Adventurer Davey du Plessis on His Near-Death Experience in the Amazon

In late August, adventurer Davey du Plessis was two months into a 4,000-mile source-to-sea expedition down the Amazon when he was shot several times. He was hit in the back, face, neck, and leg. The men who shot him were coming after him, and his voice was gone courtesy of gunshot that penetrated his throat. He escaped and made it to a hospital via help from a string of locals and a beer company that paid for a medical evacuation flight. We told the story of the South African's escape and recovery via Facebook posts left by du Plessis' mom, who frantically asked for aid and advice as she tried to reach and help her son in Peru. This video is the other side of his story, told in matter-of-fact, life-or-death detail by du Plessis himself. Watch it.

Read More

The Fastest Way to Add Winter Traction

Image001

Historically, installing chains on your car to get over a mountain pass has been an awful task. Nearly always it involves crawling around under your car, usually in the middle of a storm or in deep and cold snow drifts, freezing your hands off. It's typically wet, cold, miserable, and dirty—and unavoidable. Chains are required on many Western passes and ski area access roads. No chains, and you head home or wait until the road is plowed and clear, and others get first tracks.

No more. Thule just introduced Easy Fit Snow Chains, which literally snap on with a lever and self tighten as you drive.

There are three easy ways to put the chains on, all of which you can do without taking off your gloves: 1. Extend the rigid arch, which means popping the chain open; 2. Lay the chain on the tire starting from the top; 3. Open up the pedal and push down with your foot to tension the chain.

And it’s just as easy to get them off.

Still don't believe how fast these are? A month ago, Thule snagged a Guinness Book World Record for most snow chains put in one minute. It took the Thule team about nine seconds to install each chain.

To make sure that even the most mechanically challenged can be successful, Thule packages the product in a nylon bag that you turn inside out and use as a mat when installing the chains. It has printed instructions and even marked dots where you should kneel for best positioning. It’s one more way Thule makes sure installing the Easy Fits is easy—and that you don’t lose the directions. Available now, $450; thule.com.

—Berne Broudy
@berneb

Read More

Picture of the Week: Joshua Tree Power Nap

This week Raising Rippers is launching a new feature. It’s called Picture of the Week and every week—or as often as we’re inspired—we’ll post a particularly riveting or rad photo about adventuring with kids and give you the backstory behind the shot. What were they thinking? How'd they pull it off?* Got your own picture of the week? Submit to raisingrippers@gmail.com.

Memoto6Jumbo Rocks, Joshua Tree National Park, March 2012. Photo: Erika Benson

Benson took this picture while road tripping last spring across the Southwest with her husband and two daughters (ages 14 months and three) and describes the trip this way: It took us 10 days to go from New Mexico to Los Angeles, which if you look on Mapquest, should only take 14 hours. We had no plan. The first night we camped in Flagstaff, Arizona. It was 34 degrees and we’d packed for spring. The baby was up all night freezing. Finally I put her in the car to be warmer. From there we went to Lake Havasu City, where it was 96 degrees and we swam in the lake, which was like a slick of oil from all the boats. The only reason we went there was because London Bridge is there. The real one. It’s kind of cool that they took it apart stone by stone and then rebuilt it—but it’s still a gross American city. Then we went to Joshua Tree National Park. Somebody told us to camp at Jumbo Rocks Campground. It’s beautiful! There are lots of rocks for the kids to climb on. The baby woke up at 5 a.m., and I walked with her to try to keep her quiet. It was gorgeous then, with the sun rising all around.

This picture was taken at 10 in the morning. We were trying to break down camp and I couldn’t do it with her in the baby carrier. She would be a hazard. Earlier in the morning, hiking with her to get her to sleep, I’d seen these park signs: Be careful where you put your hands because of snakes. So there we were putting her in the Pack 'n' Play between big rocks. But it was shady! The campground wasn’t crowded when we got there and we drove around for a while looking for the perfect site. This one was tucked behind bushes and really private. We had to make lots of little trips from the car, so that’s why we needed to put her down. She slept for an hour and a half. She was tucked away so we couldn’t all the way see her, but we kept checking.

Read More

Arc'teryx Covert Case: The iPhone of Travel Bags

Covert-cases_fe

Duffel bags have no shape. Packs are meant to carry, not serve as suitcases. And wheelie bags have their limitations on stairs and over cobblestones, not to mention that they’re awkward in the overhead compartment. After over 1,000 flights dissatisfied with his suitcases, Nathan Kukathas joined Acr’teryx’s design team and created a collection of clean, sophisticated, functional travel bags that are arguably the simplest, most understated, discreet and sophisticated bags we’ve ever tested.

The Covert bags are the iPhone of travel bags. Each is a rectangular cube, vaguely army duffel like, that stands on end, slides easily into the overhead, and is made from materials you could back a truck over—or even hand over to baggage handlers without fear. The bags are superbly durable, treated to repel dirt and water, and can be carried in numerous ways: with hidden backpack straps, or by side and top handles.

The internal organization is perfectly practical, with pockets sized to actually hold the items you need, without so many that your car keys, passport or magazines end up lost. Buckles and zips are hidden, offering a new kind of theft protection.

Read More

Free Newsletters

Dispatch This week's featured articles, reviews, and videos. Sent twice weekly.
News From the Field The most important breaking news from around the Web. Sent daily.
Outside GOOur hottest adventure-travel tips and trips. Sent occasionally.
Outside Partners Outside-approved deals and special offers from select partners. Sent occasionally.

Subscribe
to Outside
Save Over
70%

Magazine Cover

iPad Outside+ App Access Now Included!

Categories

Authors

News

Apr 21, 2014

Previous Posts

2014

2013

2012

Blog Roll

Recent Comments

  1. John Morris commented on

    The Top Five Tips on...

    Thank you very good and a healthy...

  2. CJ commented on

    The Top Five Tips on...

    This is great information, although I...

  3. Pedro commented on

    Hydrate or Cry: Make...

    Is this a 6% drink like Gatorade? How...

Current Issue Outside Magazine

Subscribe and get a great deal! Two free Buyer's Guides plus a free GoLite Sport Bottle. Monthly delivery of Outside—your ultimate resource for today's active lifestyle. All that and big savings!

Free Newsletters

Dispatch This week's featured articles, reviews, and videos. Sent twice weekly.
News From the Field The most important breaking news from around the Web. Sent daily.
Gear of the Day The latest products, reviews, and editors' picks. Coming soon.
Outside Partners Outside-approved deals and special offers from select partners. Sent occasionally.

Ask a Question

Our gear experts await your outdoor-gear-related questions. Go ahead, ask them anything.

* We might edit your question for length or clarity. If it's not about gear, we'll just ignore it.