F E A T U R E S
See You In Six Months
We've got the antidote for the cacophony that is life in the early 21st century: big, empty, wide-open spaces. Our special report on remote places explores the mystery and majesty of the emptiest quarters on earth, and celebrates the importance of getting way, way away from it all. Introduction by Ian Frazier
Africa: Falling Off the Edge
A choice in the Moroccan Sahara: Go deep or go home? By Sebastian Junger
• Getting remote in Timbuktu, the Congo, and Uganda.
North America: She Left My Heart in Jarbidge
Searching for nuptial bliss in the heart of the Nevada desert By Jon Billman
• Getting remote in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Wyoming's Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness, Florida's Everglades, and Baffin Island.
Asia: High Lonesome
Snowbound in the shadow of Nepal's greatest peaks By Ronald Kral
• Getting remote in southern Siberia and the Altai Mountains, India's Arunachal Pradesh, and China's Taklimakan desert.
Australia/Oceania: Maximum Dose
Dreaming of Eden on a tiny atoll in Micronesia. By Roland Merullo
• Getting remote in New Zealand's Fiordland National Park, Australia's outback, and the Gambier Islands of French Polynesia.
Polar Regions: White on White
Chasing fallen stars in the middle of Antarctica's frozen interiorBy Mary Roach
• Getting remote in Greenland's Thule District and South Georgia Island.
South America: The Mountain of My Youth
How to find big trouble in the Peruvian Amazon By Joe Kane
• Getting remote in Argentina's Valle Turbio 4, Bolivia's Tuichi River, and on the summit of Brazil's Pico da Neblina.
Europe: Wild Suprises
• Getting remote in the Hebrides and Sweden's Sareks National Park.
Jonah Is the Whale
Fame, as every movie idol knows, is a golden cage. So what happens when the world's biggest star—Keiko the five-ton killer whale, who snagged the title role in Free Willy—is whisked away by a group of orca tamers to rejoin his kin in their native habitat? Put it another way: Would you give up a full-time personal vet and a daily hand-feeding of 140 pounds of herring for a life of anonymity off the coast of Iceland? By Natasha Singer
Here's Mud in Your Eye (and Your Ears, and Your Hair, and Your Nose...)
It's August again, time for bog snorkelers everywhere to converge on a small village in Wales, strip to their unmentionables, and plunge into the brown, odiferous, scrotum-shriveling waters of a flooded farm ditch. Let the games begin! By Tim Brookes
D E P A R T M E N T S
BASE jumpers, vilified in the United States, are given a hero's welcome in Malaysia, Asia's up-and-coming extreme-sports capital.
Will lawmakers put a cap on government-subsidized mountain search and rescue?
Changing teams: The Army Corps of Engineers quietly undergoes a green revolution.
In France, the passing of gifted ski mountaineer Hans Saari.
Part Sherman tank, part dozer, the Proteus Fire Master douses wilderness infernos.
Plus: A new gadget puts The Weather Channel in your back pocket; and wildwater kayaking's king tames Class V rapids.
The Wild File
Why are some clouds grouped perfectly at the same altitude? Why do gnats swarm at eye level? How quickly does a person lose high-altitude acclimatization when he returns to sea level? What causes pockets of cold water in the open ocean? By Stephanie Gregory
The Hard Way
Our recon agent investigates the sad state of basic fitness and takes on the true measure of conditioning: The President's Challenge physical fitness test. He passed. Can you? By Mark Jenkins
Scaling Mount Rainier on a rope team with venture capitalists, the author considers the corporate world's obsession with adventure as a networking and team-building tool. By Brad Wieners
Turned off by the Disneyesque crowds in Yosemite, climbers have adopted a new mecca in British Columbia's Bugaboo Provincial Park—a 33,000-acre granite kingdom offering big-wall climbing, heli-hiking, and world-class off-piste skiing.
Beta on the Bugaboos' best guides, campsites, and outfitters.
Plus: Twelve top photographers point their lenses at the world's most endangered habitats, from Oklahoma to Komodo; a bargain-basement vacation lets you sail and snorkel Grenada; and New Zealand travel heats up in the austral winter.
Maximum Efficiency: You've finally stuck to a routine, hitting the pool, pedals, or pavement three times a week. But now that you're doing it, are you doing it right? The country's best coaches help you perfect your form and get the most power out of your strokes, spins, and strides.
Plus: A new cycling shoe from Specialized might well change the way you ride.
Drink Up: Dehydration is your worst enemy. We test six new hydration systems—from CamelBak, Eastern Mountain Sports, Hydrapak, Platypus, The North Face, and Ultimate Direction—that let you guzzle on the go.
Nine solid lightweight hiking boots built to survive tough short-haul trips without compromising comfort.
Books: The Proving Ground, by G. Bruce Knecht; Crossing the Water, by Daniel Robb; All Elevations Unknown, by Sam Lightner Jr.; and Kiss or Kill, by Mark Twight. Also: David James Duncan's My Story as Told by Water.
Between the Lines
F E A T U R E S