Afghanistan


The latest

Archive

A year after Bonnie Carroll's husband, U.S. Army brigadier general Tom Carroll, died, she devoted her life to caring for those who’d lost loved ones from war. For widowed women in Afghanistan, this called for more than emotional support.

In July, a group of Afghan women set out to climb 24,580-foot Mount Noshaq, their country's highest mountain. No Afghan woman had ever reached the summit, and many challenges stood in their way, from hostile Afghan men who think that women shouldn't exercise, to the terrorist attack in a district near the peak two days before the climb began. This is their story.

Despite nearby Taliban attacks, the 24-year-old reached the top of 24,580-foot Mount Noshaq—the first woman from her country ever to do so

The creator behind 'Afghan Cycles' and 'Catch It' is bringing new athlete role models to life on the big screen

In buzkashi, Afghanistan’s violent and ancient national pastime, riders battle for control of an animal corpse that they carry toward a goal. Sixteen years after the U.S.-led invasion that ousted the Taliban, the sport is dominated by rival warlords who will do anything to maintain power in a turbulent country that once again is up for grabs.

Our former editor on finding the embodiment of the unkillable idea of literate badass adventure

Funding the difficult recovery period with footwear

The sport still has a long way to go, but these leaders are pushing for more diversity

Contributing editor Patrick Symmes has traveled the world with these essentials, including guidebooks, earplugs, and decoy wallets

A legendary war photographer now leaves his Leicas at home

Zainab, the first woman to complete a marathon in the country, is leading the charge to get more women involved in athletics

The guys at Combat Flip Flops think so and they've maxed out their credit cards to prove it

A new study shows that climbing teams from countries with rigid social structures are more likely to summit Himalaya mountains—but also more likely to die trying. Can the data predict summit success?

Syria is an enthusiastic state sponsor of terrorism and a fiendish fan of torture and oppression. But have you tried the stuffed grape leaves? Patrick Symmes invades before the coalition of the willing can.

The border between Afghanistan and Pakistan is a lawless no-man's-land where violence and suffering rage, and no one has it harder than the region's 21 million Pashtun women. Their mode of rebellion? Short-verse poems called landays.

Three new trips in the world's wildest places

Once a layover for hippies on the overland trail to India, Afghanistan is now so dangerous even its Lonely Planet author won’t go back. Can a tourism industry rise from the rubble?

Bamiyan, Afghanistan. Home to the best unexplored ski terrain on the planet, occasional town-crushing avalanches, and only a hint of Taliban presence. Saddle up for an intrepid boot-packing expedition deep into the Hindu Kush.

You're ready to act on those good intentions, but how do you know the organizations you're backing deserve your trust? Here are the 30 best—smartly managed groups with transparent financials, efficient spending, and track records of on-the-ground success.

Greg Mortenson did it. So Shannon Galpin, a single mom and former Pilates instructor with no humanitarian experience, figured she could, too. She sold her house, started a nonprofit, and flew to Kabul to set up women’s educational and health programs, from scratch, in the world’s most troubled country. The author joined her on her most audacious fundraiser yet.

Ride along as an international group of up-for-anything clients gets schooled on tourism's wildest frontier: Afghanistan.

A coffee-table photography book of the world’s greatest adventurers and the places they tackled.

Break out the hammocks and beach chairs! Presenting the best new books of summer.

Wow, it's been nearly a decade I've been stopping in and asking you questions for my Army sponsored jaunts around the globe. It's Afghanistan this time and I need a stiff mountaineering boot that is still light and won't cook my feet to death in the 110 degree heat this summer. Our issue boots are getting better, but still aren't quite there for the really steep, rocky stuff. My average load is around 40 to 60 pounds with the body armor. Don't worry about colors or "military looking" stuff. Just let me know what will get the job done. BTW: The Suunto altimeter you turned me onto back in '02 is still going strong and hard at work over here. Nice job.—LarryFirebase Vulcan, Afghanistan

Two fiction titans imagine life on the feral side.

Book clubs, rejoice: The rollicking sequel to Three Cups of Tea is here.

Attention, all cynics: You can change the world. But don't take our word for it. Here are people combining big ideas and bold adventures, including our first-ever Reader of the Year.

In the rugged eastern provinces of Afghanistan, where peaks rise thousands of feet on all sides and the next valley is a world away, American troops are engaged in a kind of alpine warfare not seen for decades. Months can go by without combat, but when you're patrolling terrain as dangerous and unpredictable as the enemy, the calm is often shattered when you least expect it.

The planet is smaller than ever, but that just means there's a host of new dangers out there—and a new set of solutions. These days, a text message or the right travel-insurance policy might just save your bacon. So study up—your life may depend on it.

A video dispatch from the mountains of Afghanistan.

Jon Krakauer returns with an epic story of sacrifice and betrayal

The embattled director of the Central Asia Institute responds to allegations of financial mismanagement and that he fabricated stories in his bestselling book Three Cups of Tea.

Greg Mortenson's school-building program in Central Asia dates back to 1993, when the banged-up K2 survivor made a pledge to the Himalayan villagers who took him in. Fifteen years and Three Cups of Tea later, it's both a powerful example of a great idea and a chaotic, ongoing adventure. KEVIN FEDARKO hits the rough road with Mortenson in Afghanis

Greg Mortenson on his mission to bring the world together.

For decades, no one had traversed the entire length of the Wakhan, following the old Silk Road from the northward bend of the Panj River. We had no idea if it could be done.

A veteran documentary photographer, Teru Kuwayama frequently finds himself on the front lines in Iraq and Afghanistan—the latter of which he calls his “hands-down favorite country on earth.” This despite the fact that he and Outside Reconnaissance Agent and Hard Way columnist Mark Jenkins were arrested after traversing Afghanistan’s northeastern…

In the sixties and seventies it was the hippie trail that brought foreigners to Afghanistan. Two decades of war and terror later, Kabul is a nonstop rave of C-130s, NGOs, soldiers, and spooky nation-builders. The freaks are back on Chicken Street—where everything old is new again.

An ardent defender of wilderness reflected on the solace of the mountains and nature in difficult times. He wrote this after 9/11, but the sentiment applies now, too, as we watch the world changing around us.

See the archive