Outside Magazine, April/May 2021

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Features

The Messenger: Justin Williams is not only one of the fastest cyclists in the country; he’s also one of the sport’s most outspoken champions for diversity. But his mission has morphed into the greatest moon shot of all: to make you care about American bike racing. —Gloria Liu

Tell Me Something Good: Despite the relentless challenges of the past year, there’s lots to get excited about in the months ahead, from inspiring environmental developments to new studies showing that 2020 actually made our brains stronger. We’ve rounded up 49 reasons to feel optimistic about where the world is going. Plus: Jimmy Chin and the North Face have a $7 million plan to make ­adventure more inclusive.

The Plot to Kill the Olympics: When Ukrainian business­man Konstantin Grigorishin introduced the International Swimming League in 2019, he made the first move in an ambitious plan that could blow up Olympic sports and usher in a new era of athlete fairness. He also commenced a game of chicken with some of the world’s most power­ful men, including Vladimir Putin. And he just might win. —Alex Perry

Chasing the Water Witches: For centuries, dowsers have claimed the ability to find groundwater, precious metals, and other quarry using divining rods and a seemingly mystical intu­ition. Is it the real deal or woo-woo? Dan Schwartz suspends disbelief to see for himself.

What Really Happened to the Berserk? In 2017, Outside published a story about a ship that went missing off the coast of Antarctica with three men aboard. In a new interview, expedition leader Jarle Andhoy talks about questions that still hover over the doomed adventure.

Dispatches

Travel

Public Lands: The upshot of only traveling domestically for the past year? We’ve gotten to know our 615 million acres of federal public lands better than ever. And with new parks and designations on the horizon, there will be even more ways to get off the beaten path for adventure. Here’s what we learned.

Base Camp: Three glamping sites in southern Utah that offer seclu­sion and wide-open spaces.

Exposure

New Pursuits: Photographer L. Renee Blount shows what it takes to tackle five outdoor activities for the first time—in a single month.

Gear

Road Shoes: Runners that help you push your limits.

Waterproof Shells: Lightweight jackets for spring showers.

Daypacks: Top-notch carry solutions for everyday essentials.

Mountain Bikes: Go all in on every ride with these capable rigs.

Fitness

In the Lead: Can mindful running make you faster—or at least happier? Brands are betting on it.

Fuel: Five alcoholic kombuchas that are every bit as tasty as their sober counterpart.

Tools: Six sleep aids that ensure solid shut-eye.

Moves: Boost performance in any sport with this ten-minute jump-rope routine.