September 1, 2011

Mount Kilimanjaro     Photo: Matt Kieffer/Flickr

Dog Found Living Atop Kilimanjaro

At 19,000 feet, dog's survival is mystery

Four hikers came across a dog at the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro last week, raising questions about how the animal came to be there, and how it has survived in freezing conditions atop the highest peak in Africa. “As I was responding to the call of nature, I saw the dog lying one meter away from where I stood on a rock,” Antoine le Galloudec, one of the climbers, told the Tanzanian Citizen. Le Galloudec described the dog as auburn-colored and apparently healthy. A local tour opperator believes that it is same animal spotted ten years ago at a lower Kilimanjaro camp, suggesting that the dog is a long-time mountain resident. At 19,340 feet, Kilimanjaro's summit is high enough to see temperatures regularly drop below freezing and to induce altitude sickness, which can affect animals as well and humans alike.

Read more at Tanzania’s Citizen

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Freya Hoffmeister paddling     Photo: Courtesy of Freya Hoffmeister

Kayaker to Circumnavigate South America

Woman sets off on two-year journey

German paddler Freya Hoffmeister launched an expedition to circumnavigate South America by kayak on Tuesday, setting out south along the Atlantic coast from the Puerto Madero Yacht Club in Buenos Aires. The journey, dubbed "The Second Continent," will cover nearly 15,000 miles and bring Hoffmeister to 12 countries over the the course of two years. Hoffmeister, 47, is best known for making the world's second circumnavigation of Australia by kayak. That expedition took 322 days and included a seven-night stretch at sea in the Gulf of Carpentaria. Hoffmeister will likely face the trip's biggest challenge when she enters the cold and often-rough waters off Cape Horn, the southern tip of South America, later this year. 

Read more at The Adventure Blog

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    Photo: J Dueck/Flickr

Detached Foot Found on B.C. Coast. Again.

Officials remain baffled by floating feet

A detached foot washed up in a marina in Vancouver, British Columbia on Tuesday, the eighth to appear in Canada and the eleventh found in the region since 2007. The shoe was discovered floating upside down in the Plaza of Nations, in the False Creek inlet, with the leg bone still attached. Police say the remains appear to be human, though authorities plan to conduct further forensic testing as several recent foot finds were later identified as hoaxes. The British Columbia Coroners Service told ABC that they will also conduct DNA test in an effort to identify the foot's owner. All of the feet have appeared in running shoes. Authorities speculate that the shoes' buoancy lifts the feet to the surface after they detatch, via natural decomposition, from bodies in the ocean. But how those bodies have ended up in the ocean, and their identities, remains one of the Pacific Northwest's strangest mysteries.

Read more at ABC

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Glacier National Park     Photo: karynsig/Flickr

Search For Glacier Employee Continues

Hiker, 27, missing since Sunday

A major search is underway in Montana's Glacier National Park for a seasonal employee who went missing after setting out for a day hike on Sunday. Jacob Rigby, 27, a seasonal park employee working as a member of the park's exotic plant team, failed to arrive for work Monday morning, worrying his supervisor. Park rangers later located his vehicle at the Fielding Trailhead in the southern end of the park. Officials have described Rigby as "an avid and skilled hiker" who is familiar with the park and "has excellent scouting capabilities and enjoys hiking off trail." The search operation now includes 50 people, a dog team, and helicopters. Park officials believe Rigby was hiking an "extreme mountain traverse with challenging terrain." Anyone who might have seen Rigby is encouraged to contact park dispatch.

Read more at NPS.gov

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Jenny Barringer Simpson     Photo: Victah Sailor

Simpson Surprises With World Title

U.S. runner takes 1,500; first since '83

American Jenny Barringer Simpson took an upset victory in the women's 1500 meters at the world track and field championships on Thursday, notching the first U.S. world title in that event—or in any other distance race—since 1983. In a physical, tactical final that saw Simpson's U.S. teammate and prohibitive favorite Morgan Uceny fall, Simpson trailed the frontrunners through three laps before moving decisively to the outside with 100 meters to go, beating Great Britain's Hannah England to the line by .28 seconds in 4:05.40. Simpson is a 2009 graduate of the University of Colorado, where she was a four-time national champion and became the first-ever U.S. collegian to run under four minutes for 1,500 meters. But in 2010, after three years of running the steeplechase in international competition, she struggled with injury, failing to run a personal best and finishing a underwhelming third in the 5,000 meters at the U.S. championships. Her win on Thursday came during a highly successful half-hour window for the United States, as U.S. sprinter Lashinda Demus won gold in the 400 hurdles and Jesse Williams took an unexpected victory in the high jump. 

Read more at the Denver Post

(Photo of Jenny Simpson by Victah Sailor/ PhotoRun.net)

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