The Outside Blog

Dispatches : Sep 2010

Video: Heuga Can Do

Heuga Can Do Trailer from Larkin Flynn on Vimeo.

This past June I had the chance to hang out in Aspen with Mike Marolt—cpa, dad, high altitude skier, and filmmaker. On that Saturday night in the bar of the Hotel Jerome, Marolt couldn't stop talking about Jimmie Heuga, the subject of his newest film.  An Olympic gold medalist diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, Heuga changed the way people lived with the disease. At a time when the conventional thinking was to rest, Heuga engaged in vigorous activity. With the trailer now out, I thought it time to ask Marolt a few more questions about Heuga's story.

1) How did you learn about Jimmie Heuga?
I met Jimmie when I was 8 years old and when I got out of college and established my career as a cpa, he challenged me to pick a fight.  Any fight would be great and that everyone needs to pick one, but he asked me to pick MS.  I was on the Heuga Center for MS board for years (Now it’s the Can Do MS Center. Jimmie is still the founder).

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New Adventure Stuff You Should Read

New blogs and writers pop up constantly on the web. Here are a few new adventure related sites, reporters, and stories from this summer worth a read.

The Adventure Life Gear Blog
Steve Casimiro and crew started this new section of The Adventure Life back in June. They put gear through the wringer, comment on recent industry news, and post on new stuff they're salivating over.

ESPN Freeskiing
Former Outside assistant managing editor Megan Michelson started working for a month ago. In that time, she's wracked up a slew of great blogs, on topics from heated chairlifts to avalanche docs. Most notably, as part of the web site's Thinkers series. 

Gulf Oil Spill
Take your pick: The AP, Science, Nature, Mother Jones, and The New York Times have dedicated resources towards covering the effects of the Deepwater Horizon Disaster. Yes, this is environmental story, but it effects every sort of recreating, from swimming to fishing to eating.

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SpiderDan Climbs Again, and Gets Arrested Again

Urban climber Daniel Goodwin was arrested today after climbing to the top levels of a 58-story building in San Francisco. After scaling the Millenium Tower using suction cups, the 54-year-old Goodwin put up an American flag.

SpiderDan on our April 1982 cover On his web site, Goodwin gave two reasons for the climb, to call attention to our vulnerability to terrorism and to raise awareness of cancer.

The reason for my scaling of the Millennium Tower today is twofold. One is to call attention to our nation’s continued vulnerability to attacks of terrorism upon our skyscrapers. Everyday, thousands of people in our country spend time in high-rise building above the seventh floor and beyond the reach of fire ladders. Though developers would like us to believe otherwise, these people are susceptible to being trapped like the people at the World Trade Center on 9/11.

My other reason is to increase public awareness of cancer. Despite my survival, cancer remains a top killer on the planet. My hope is, if a survivor of a Stage Four diagnosis can be seen continuing with their life, no matter how bizarre, others will gain inspiration and together we can find a cure for cancer.

One other thing mentioned at the top of the press release on his web site. To understand his underlying reasons for climbing the tower, he recommends getting a copy of his book, Skyscraperman: A True Story.  

--Joe Spring

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The Marathon Diaries: Top 10 Cross-Training Tools

The Nike for Women Marathon that Outside's assistant managing editor, Ali, and I are running in is approaching quickly. It’s a little more than two months away and I should be strictly sticking to our training plan. ErbOur schedule has us running up to 16 miles on the weekend and nine milers mid-week. It should be obvious that I shouldn’t take two weeks off right now. But I did. I had to: RAGBRAI, the statewide bicycle race across Iowa. Being a fifth-generation Iowan, it would have been remiss for me to miss it.

I rode with my 65-year-old dad and, for all of you who don’t already know, Larry Erb is one bad-ass rider. He rides 75 miles a day for fun. He loves hills and, most of all, he loves kicking my ass on the bike.

My dad isn’t the type to let his daughter win to boost her self-esteem. He’s hyper-competitive. Trouble is, so am I. And what could have been a leisurely bike ride across my home state turned into multiple sprint pushes where we rode neck and neck, refusing to let the other one pass. Until we'd get to a hill—and then he’d power past me at 20 mph up hill, while I fell back, pushing a mere 15 mph.

RAGBRAI was a chance to reconnect with my dad, to spend a full week with him as an adult, and to finally go on the father-daughter adventure he’s been promising me since I was 14 years old. It was also one solid week of cross-training for the marathon. Yes, I could have ridden 92 miles and then hopped off the bike and ran another 10 miles but, let’s be real; I’m nowhere near that extreme. And, to be honest, all I really wanted to do was end each day in a lawn chair next to my Pops and drink an ice-cold beer.

I love cross training. It’s been my favorite part of training for a marathon. I enjoy my run-free days—the ones I get to spend hiking a fourteener with my mutt, Santos, or driving up to Leadville, CO, to mountain bike freshly cut trails.

And what’s cross training without the ultimate cross-training tools?

SugoiSugoi Evolution S/L Jersey, $65: I’m  a girl and, for some odd (but totally predictable) reason, I feel like I can run, bike, and climb better if I’m dressed really cute. And Sugoi is one of my favorite brands for adorable bike wear. Their stuff is stylish and sleek. Their retro-looking jersey features three elastic back pockets, where I stuffed shades, gingerbread vanilla-flavored GU and my cycling cap. Iowa is brutally hot and humid in the summer and this jersey kept me dry and comfortable even after mile 60. The 10” front zip was long enough to provide me with ample air. It also comes in a short-sleeve version.

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The Canyons Resort Introduces Heated Ski Lift

Steve Snodgrass' picture

Courtesy of Steve Snodgrass on Flickr.

The Canyons Resort in Park City, Utah will introduce a heated ski lift this season, Ski Magazine reports. Heat will be emitted from the seats, and the temperature inside the capsule should reach above 50 degrees.

Outside of the obvious benefit of comfort, the new chair design will also allow lifts to move at higher speeds, transporting resort patrons over 3,100 vertical feet in nine minutes. Resort officials anticipate that the increased speed will allow their lifts to operate at nearly 50 percent higher volume over the course of a day.

The chair will be almost entirely encapsulated by orange Plexiglas, andthe heating mechanism will be charged with each seven-second turnaround the base terminal.

"It will feel like you're in a pair of sunglasses," says Hannah Bowling, communications coordinator for The Canyons.

For more on ski resort innovation, take a gander at our recent coverage of EpicMix at Vail.

--Riley Blanton

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