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Adventure : everest

Outside Magazine, Aug 2014

Play to Win
They manage hedge funds. They run carpools. They work 70-hour weeks and endure 90-minute commutes. Yet somehow these elite desk jockeys stay as fit as the pros. Here's how they do it. By Gordy Megroz.

Veelcome to Tiksi, You Vill Find it Apalling Place.
Few Americans have heard the story of the ten brave explorers who were lost after ice crushed their ship in the Russian High Arctic in 1879. But as Hampton Sides discovers on his own gritty, mosquito-infested mission to Siberia, the Russians will never forget it.

Black Year
In April, just as the Everest climbing season was getting under way, a monster avalanche buried 16 Sherpas in a grave of ice. Grayson Schaffer has the inside story of the mountain's deadliest day and the aftershocks that will change climbing forever.

The White Stripes
The new neighbors have arrived—and they stink. All across the country, skunks are moving into our woodsheds, garages, and empty lots, and there's little we can do about it. Christopher Kemp noses into a new kind of urban blight.

First Look: A high-flying Google X startup aims to blow new life into the deflated wind-energy sector.
Biking: How traffic-choked Boston turned into a two-wheeler's dream.
Primer: Are new organic-food lines from Walmart and Target a godsend or the death of a movement?
Rising Star: Two years after a near fatal crash, triathlete Lukas Verzbicas is climbing the pro ranks.
Media: Biologist Wallace J. Nichols's prescription for a healthier and happier life? Salty H2O.
Feuds: Fur trapping is back—and it's snaring man's best friend.
Covet: Summer just isn't summer without portable tunes.

Northern Europe: The sun never sets on the land of mountains, fjords, and rustic gourmet food.
Weekend Plan: Ski mountains come alive in warm weather with zip lines, rope courses, and other downhill fun. 
Go List:
Yosemite's Merced River opens up to paddlers, credit cards for travelers, and a new way to avoid airport parking fees.
Base Camp: An Icelandic lodge set right on top of the action.

Photography: The sharpest smartphone lens we've ever seen.
Summer Toys: Gear that's happiest when wet.
Obstacle Course Racing: Tools to get you over, under, around, and through any barrier.
Watches: Tough timepieces.


Parting Shot

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"Jaws" Tourism Waves over Cape Cod

For tourists seeking a thrill, Martha’s Vineyard probably isn’t the first destination that comes to mind. Until now (queue John Williams’s famous score). 

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration recently released a study finding that after decades of decline, great white shark populations are surging along the eastern shores of Canada and the United States. According to reports from the AP, more than 40 shark sightings were reported in the past two years. Prior to 2004, sightings hovered around two per year. Increased conservation efforts and seal populations have been credited with the related influx of great white sharks in the Cape Cod area

The spike in shark sightings, along with the area’s connection to Steven Spielberg’s Jaws, has caused summer tourism to boom. The 1975 classic film, shot in Martha’s Vineyard, has been screened in local theaters all summer. Justin Labdon, owner of the Cape Cod Beach Chair Company, can’t keep enough shark paraphernalia on the shelves, according to the New York Post. “I mean, truthfully, we’ve probably grown about 500 percent in terms of the sale of our shark apparel.”

Visitors can sip on shark-themed beverages while taking boat trips with local outfitters to see the seals—and maybe even a dorsal fin sticking out of the water. Beats mini golf, right?

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Do Laundry While You Run

We usually don't encourage multitasking while running, but a treadmill that lets you wash clothes while you work out might change that.

Si Hyeing Ryu, a student designer in South Korea, created the Wheel treadmill design concept for the Electrolux Design Lab 2014 design competition. The washing machine–treadmill hybrid would use human kinetic power to do your laundry while you run.

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"To clean, or not to clean, that is the question," said Hyeing Ryu in his design submission. "This is an eco-friendly and efficient experience. It saves time by doing the workout and washing clothes."

The machine is composed of a circular treadmill track that contains multiple compartments serving as washing machine tubs. Inside, "washing balls" help get clothes cleaner while reducing the amount of water used. A person's steps would spin the wash cycle, and miles logged would be stored as battery power for days when your legs need a rest.

That age-old excuse for having no time to work out because of all the chores on your to-do list? Go hang it on the clothesline.

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This Supermarket Runs on Rotting Food

The UK supermarket chain Sainsbury's is setting an example in sustainability by transforming its own food waste into energy. A store in Cannock, in central England, is now run entirely on electricity generated from its own recycled refuse, marking the first time a major retailer is not reliant on the national grid for its power.

Here's how it works: Any food that can't be donated to local charities for human consumption or turned into animal feed is transported to a nearby anaerobic digestion (AD) plant run by waste management company Biffa. The food waste is converted into biomethane gas, which is used to power the store.

A 1.5-kilometer cable (that's less than a mile, for you metric-phobes) connects the processing plant to the Sainsbury's, thus very literally closing the loop on food recycling.

This remarkable model may not work everywhere, but it certainly offers grounds for optimism.

As Richard Swannell, a director at Wrap, a government-funded organization that promotes recycling and sustainable business, told the BBC, "There are now 60 AD plants recycling food waste, which can process up to 2.5 million tons of food waste per year and generate enough renewable electricity to power a city three times the size of Cannock."

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Do-Gooder Drones

Despite our best efforts to stunt it, abuse of nature persists. But drones—those flying bogeymen of Big Brother—could be rebranded as heroes as they gain extensive use in monitoring environmental and animal welfare where humans can’t easily go.

For one, drones are increasingly being used to investigate poaching in large stretches of national parks, and now a new program in Belize is taking that effort over water. The country tried to protect its coral reef system, the largest in the Western Hemisphere, by setting up a slew of protected areas, but monitoring huge sections of ocean with a limited staff is no easy task. 

The solution: At the beginning of lobster season in June, the Belize Fisheries Department began tracking illegal fishing with two drones made possible by the Wildlife Conservation Society and, an Australian nonprofit that the New York Times reports has built about 100 drones for the use in conservation. Designed to withstand and excel in unique environments, the drones have flown over water, through jungles, and around beaches.

Having a lot of land to monitor impedes efficient protection, but so do legal issues closer to home. Societies concerned with the safety of factory farm animals have been set back by “ag-gag” laws, rules that outlaw undercover recording of farm operations. Independent journalist Will Potter says he’s found a loophole in the rules: They don’t explicitly say you can’t record from the air. Inspired by satellite images of farms (taken within public space), Potter broke out the drones.

This might be illegal, but it will be years before courts decide what to do about it. Meanwhile, Potter will publicly document the scale and degree of factory farm operations. His operation is endorsed by PETA, which has been using and selling drones to stem illegal hunting since 2013. 

“If Will Potter uses drones legally to shine a spotlight on factory farming and slaughter practices, we’re all in favor of it,” PETA president Ingrid Newkirk said in an interview with NPR’s The Salt blog.

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