Features

Features are the longform articles our readers know and love. These longreads showcase our strongest writers, most ambitious reporting, and award-winning storytelling about the outdoors.

Cornhole Is a Pro Sport Now

The American Cornhole League wants to turn a game that's typically played with one hand holding a beer—and possibly named for an indecent part of the human body—into an international spectator sport

Eric Barton
Oct 31, 2019

Is Brain Stimulation the Next Big Thing?

Over the past decade, athletes, coaches, and researchers have been seduced by the performance-boosting promises of brain stimulation. On a ride-and-zap-your-brain-like-the-pros tour through the Alps, Alex Hutchinson wonders whether it really works—and whether we want it to.

Alex Hutchinson
Oct 24, 2019

One Man's Wild Quest to Reach the Bottom of Every Ocean

Multimillionaire Victor Vescovo committed himself to one of the world’s craziest remaining adventure quests: to reach the deepest points in every ocean. What does it take to get there? A radically high-tech, $30 million Triton submersible, a team of crack engineers and scientists, and one very gonzo explorer.

Susan Casey
Oct 22, 2019

After a Hard Diagnosis, One Athlete Learns to Soften Up

Expedition kayaker Scott Lindgren knocked off first descents of the most remote and dangerous rivers on earth, from the Himalayas to the Sierra. He paddled with an aggro attitude and saw weakness as an unforgivable trait in himself and others. But when a brain tumor started to derail his athletic performance and threaten his life, everything changed.

Scott Lindgren and Thayer Walker
Oct 14, 2019

Can Video Games Replace the Outdoors?

Maybe not in our hearts, but certainly in our brains. Plus, they can make you love the indoors far too much—which is why there’s now a full-fledged, woodsy rehab center for joystick addicts who need a soothing pathway back to a normal life.

David Kushner
Oct 8, 2019

Has Overtourism Killed Big Sur?

The once idyllic coastal area of California has been besieged by tourists, and residents worry that lasting environmental damage is being done. But how can you tell visitors not to come when tourism supports so many? One local, Josh Marcus, looks for solutions.

Josh Marcus
Oct 3, 2019

I Was Flying to Montana to Bury My Son

On a plane ride over the Mountain West, a grieving father retraces his adventurous youth and searches for solace in the rugged landscapes that molded him

Mark Sundeen
Sep 30, 2019

Tibet Is Still Burning

Over the past ten years, more than 160 Tibetans have committed self-immolation—the act of setting yourself on fire—to protest Chinese occupation of their country. Has this had any lasting effect? In an extraordinary journey to Dharamsala, India, the center of Tibetan culture in exile, a journalist and a scholar talk to family members about the meaning and costs of the ultimate political sacrifice.

Tracy Ross
Sep 24, 2019