I’m not really one for gear reviews but I felt like I have to plug Yaktrax, those metal traction things that you can strap on to your feet for snowy and/or icy conditions. Part of my goal this winter is to keep running and working out outside, therefore avoiding my typical winter retreat to the gym where I blow out and gain an extra 10 to 15lbs that I spend most of the spring and summer losing. I’ve loaded up on a lot of cold weather gear and finally tried out the last piece of my arsenal, Yaxtrax, last week on the Incline. Lately, the Incline has been a snow packed death march. Even worse is the trail down which has resembled more of a bobsled course than a hiking trail. Before the Yaktrax my trip up and down was taking well over 2 hours, with most of that spent trying not to break something on the downhill. With the Yaktrax my trip time is almost to the minute as fast as I do it during the summer, when the only thing on the Incline is fat tourists. To top it off they are so light you almost cannot feel them on your feet, and they transition from snow to ice to mud to dirt to dry pavement without a problem. Great piece of equipment. The Feed:
There’s a new trend in making athletic events more environmentally friendly. The Council for Responsible Sport provides a set of criteria that events need to meet before they are certified as green. Good idea. Check out their website for a list of events that have been certified.
Kind of a strange list of tips for surviving various calamities that arise when biking. The Cool Whip as substitute for shaving cream has kind of intrigued me.
10 Tips from Photographer Scott Smith, useful little nuggets of information for throwing down some good shots. These guys, if they can make it, have one of the best jobs in the world; travel, great scenery, lots of ski days and one of the only, almost, sure fire pickup lines in the lexicon of man: “Hey ladies, would you like to take off your clothes for me.” Genius.
Three of the top sustainable ski resorts in the country and how they do it. I think ‘green initiatives’ at ski resorts are about 60% marketing and 40% altruism. I mean c’mon, you are an industry that depends on a high volume of people coming to your resort (in cars) to eat at your restaurants and stay in your condos. I’m pretty sure that building a LEED certified building here or there and buying carbon offsets isn’t really going to do much. I realize that I’m being pretty hypocritical here, as I snowboard and get up to the resorts as often as possible, but do these resorts really think that this is going to make a difference? We need better and cleaner ways to the mountains, a hold on the ridiculous building booms in fragile mountain ecosystems and way less mountain amenities. You know who should be on this list? Silverton Mountain. Basic, no frills, minimum impact, awesome. Go Silverton style. THAT would be impressive.
The National Renewable Energy Laboratory is building a new headquarters in Denver; a green building that is designed to draw 0% of its energy needs from the grid. Check out the Wall Street Journal article about how the architects have designed a ‘smart’ building and then check out the photo gallery. Now this is smart design and planning. Take note Aspen and Vail.
Lately Craig has been calling me the Ton Ton of the group, so this awesome Lego picture gallery of the planet Hoth really hit home. Good stuff.
And finally, from the Adventure Life, a crazy time lapse video of Yosemite National Park. Cool, kind of creepy, and pretty startling. The sheer number of people and cars in this park is incredible. Time for the National Parks to do a little bit of smart planning of their own.