When Palladium was founded in 1920, the company didn’t make boots; it made rubber tires for the fledgling aviation industry, tires of layered canvas, and vulcanized rubber.
By the late 1940s, the World Wars were over and the French company shifted from making tires to building boots with the same quality and craftsmanship. In 1947, it produced the boot that still forms the basis of its collection, the Pampa. The French Foreign Legion, impressed with its outstanding comfort and durability, procured the Pampa for its staff based in the harsh North African desert and in the Atlas Mountains.
Last year was the hottest year on record for the contiguous United States since record-keeping began in 1895, according to a Tuesday announcement from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Here's a breakdown of the 2012 measurements, by the numbers.
55.3: Average temperature, in degrees Fahrenheit, for 2012. The record is 3.2 degrees higher than the 20th-century average and a full degree higher than the previous record, which was set in 1998. NOAA
26.57: Annual precipitation, in inches, for 2012. The number is 2.57 below the average, making 2012 the 15th driest year on record. NOAA
11: Number of disasters that reached the $1 billion threshold in losses. The events are believed to have caused 349 deaths. The U.S. Climate Extremes Index indicated that 2012 was the second most extreme year on record for the nation. NOAA
In 2010, visual artist Sue Austin received a grant from Arts Council England’s Impact Fund that allowed her to transform her wheelchair into a propelled, finned, scuba-tank-outfitted craft suited for underwater exploration. She designed it so that she could move the foot pedals to control the fins and change directions. She unveiled a series of photos and videos showing off the creation leading up to the 2012 Paralympics. Though Austin's original motivation was artistic, outfitters have expressed interest in using the device for adventure-seeking clients. "We've had PADI [Professional Association of Diving Instructors]
course directors and very experienced divers saying they would pay to
hire it," she told Digital Spy.
In September 2012, we posted the trailer for Tempting Fear, filmmaker Mike Douglas' surprise documentary on 29-year-old extreme ski-mountaineer Andreas Fransson. Douglas originally planned to make a short about Fransson, but after
discovering how articulate the athlete was he set off to tell a much longer story. Douglas followed Fransson for 17 months—from January 2011 to May 2012—as the skier
returned to the slopes after a 2010 neck injury that almost killed him. In October, the resulting 25-minute movie won the Best Action Film award at the Adventure Film Festival in Boulder. You can now watch the entire flick above.
Whitewater kayakers Erik Boomer, Tyler Bradt, and Galen Volckhausen joined adventure filmmakers Tim Kemple, Anson Fogel, Blake Hendrix, and Skip Armstrong on a trip to a remote jungle in Mexico to find the ultimate waterfall. The resulting adventure short about their quest, Cascada, drops on January 14. Here's a taste of what's to come.