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After 13 agonizing years of waiting, it finally happened for writer Wells Tower—and then the moment disappeared

In which Wells Tower braves the rain, smog, and peak-weekend hordes of Great Smoky Mountains National Park to give his three-month-old son a first taste of nature’s sweetness

You consider yourself a gentleman, and so it's important, when you wake up with a stranger in your underpants one remorseful summer morning, that you manage the matter with due delicacy and grace.

Ah, Venice, city of love—and site of one of the world's largest, goofiest rowing regattas, where anybody is welcome to paddle anything through the storied canals for 19 glorious, grueling miles. Into this tempest we tossed WELLS TOWER and his big brother. Their orders? Finish the damn thing without killing each other.

Having constructed the greatest flotation device mankind has ever known, our fearless writer embarks on an ill-conceived, possibly insane crossing of alligator-infested North Florida via a string of seriously imperiled and incredibly beautiful rivers. (Yeah, it's a tube.)

Your town got you down? We’ve got your escape plan. These 20 stars of America’s 21st-century Renaissance are riding a wave of civic reinvention and fresh ideas.

It usually takes a week of traveling with Ed Tower before I’m seized by the tantrum-pitching impulse and can barely resist the urge to punch myself again and again in the face.

Is it a bird or a haunting memory? Wells Tower tracks an uncertain resurrection in the big woods of Arkansas.

Adventure, big and small, is all about risk. The risk that things may go terribly wrong. That danger will finally cut off your credit and hit you with a hefty bill. That luck will flee the scene as the dark tide rises. In the tales of calamity that follow, our 13 unlucky writers hold forth on their personal odysseys into the land of nightmares.

CHRIST HAS RETURNED. No, not the carpenter—the skater. Christian Hosoi (“Christ” to fans) is resurrecting his career at 37. After a drug-fueled meltdown that ended with four and a half years in prison, the legendary aerobat is taking his first high-profile steps toward reentering the competitive fray—touring with skate exhibitions,…