Cavers set up camp in the Hang Son Doong Cave, on the border in Vietnam near Laos in Vietnam’s Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park. Photo from National Geographic’s Your Shot contest.
After a variety of solo and group outdoor excursions, I’ve come up with a list of 9 essential items to bring with you to make traveling a easier and more enjoyable. From tech gadgets to simple pleasures to frequently overlooked toiletries, this list will prove useful for any adventure trip. It’s important to be thoughtful and efficient when packing for your adventure trip. Packing too little means you might be stuck without an important tool, while packing too much could lead to a cumbersome travel experience. Clockwise from top left:
1. Kindle Fire HD - Pack it with an endless number of good reads to keep you occupied throughout your entire trip, without having to sacrifice heavy books.
2. Built-In Purifier Water Bottle – The built in filter means fresh clean water, wherever you are.
3. All-in-one Mac Global Charger – With so many gadgets (iPhone, iPad, Macbook), it can be difficult to find enough outlets to charge them all. This all-in-one charger allows two items to be charged through one outlet, reducing the number of chargers, plugs, and adapters you need to carry. Plus, it comes equipped with 5 interchangeable adapters, so you’ll have power no matter the country.
4. RayBan Folding Wayfarer Polarized Sunglasses – These polarized sunglasses fold up to fit in your pocket, making these the most convenient sunglasses out there.
5. Grado RS2i Headphones – Not only do these headphones provide excellent sound quality, but the larger over-ear size means mini-earbuds won’t be slipping out of your ears on that bumpy bus ride.
6. JAMBOX Wireless Bluetooth Speaker – Convenient, small, and packed with a loud punch, this portable wireless speaker will provide amplified audio on the go.
7. Bicycle Distressed Playing Cards - These ruffed up Bicycle cards not only look like they’ve gone everywhere with you, but they’ll be able to go everywhere with you for solo entertainment without WiFi.
8. Toiletry Kit – This Minimergency Kit contains all the necessary toiletries and accessories you need and never remember to bring. Trust me, it’s a compact life saver.
9. Leather Passport Case Having a leather passport case not only looks suave, but it will protect your important documents and cards from the elements.
An epic road trip on an Enfield Motorcycle to the highest road in the world, somewhere between Manali and Leh, Ladahk in India. Watch and start saving to buy your Royal Enfield. The road from Manali to Leh is 297 miles long and takes 2 days to transverse on a bus. It’s one of the most dangerous roads in the world. The highest elevation it hits is 17,480 ft. To skip to the mountains section in the video, start at 5:00.
Mount Roraima is the highest point in Guyana, the plateau standing at 2700 m with the peak at 2810 m in Venezuela. Roraima is the tripartite border of Guyana, Venezuela and Brazil, and at the moment can only be approached from the Venezuelan side. Part of the ancient Guiana Shield, which extends into Brazil and Venezuela and was once part of Gondwanaland before tectonic activity moved apart the continents of Africa and South America, Roraima has developed unique flora which huddles for shelter in pockets on the exposed, windswept plateau. Amazing rock formations have been carved by wind and water, and the ground is uneven and rocky with frequent crystal clear pools of excruciatingly cold water (good for the circulation apparently!) There are crystal beds that contain large, individual crystals in interesting shapes, and stunning views from the top over the Gran Sabana of Venezuela, provided the cloud cover lifts. A good guide should give you the opportunity to see all of these features once on the top.
Craig Clasen was hunting yellow fin tuna with fellow fisherman Cameron Kirkconnell, photographer D.J Struntz (DJ Strunz’s portfolio) and film maker Ryan McInnis in the Gulf of Mexico when a 12 ft. Tiger Shark aggressively approached and circled Ryan McInnis in deep waters south of the Mississippi River’s mouth. Regarded by many as two of the world’s best free diving spearfishermen, Craig and Cameron have come into contact with thousands of sharks.
Craig Clasen immediately swam to his friend with his spear gun.
‘I positioned myself between Ryan and the shark and I tried to watch it for a second, hoping it would pass us by,’ explained 32-year-old Mr Clasen.
‘I noticed that the shark was getting tighter and tighter and just kept trying to get a back angle on us and behaving in an aggressive manner.
‘The shark made a roll and looked like it was going to charge us so I just went ahead and took the conservative route and put a shaft through its gills.
‘Cameron and I have been around sharks for years and we all have a lot of experience with them but this encounter had a different feel to it.
‘Down in my core I really felt the shark was there to feed. I didn’t want it to come to that.’
Craig spent nearly two hours wrestling with the giant 12ft shark, spearing it seven times and even attempting to drown the beast before eventually finishing it off with a long blade knife. (Rest of the story at SurfThereNow.com)
A mass of plastic in the Pacific, increasing tenfold each decade since 1945, is now the size of Texas and killing everything in its wake. Currently, there is six times more plastic than plankton floating in the middle of the Pacific. (Link to Article) The plastic is poisoning our fish and sealife and killing the Oceans. The plastic passes along toxins to humans through fish we eat.
Plastics are not just killing sea life, but they are adversely affecting every one of us. One particularly bad chemical, Bisphenol A (BPA), has been shown to cause serious health side effects. Research has shown the chemical to remain in humans for longer than previous thought.
- Each day, North Americans throw away more than 385,000 cellphones and 143,000 computers– electronic waste is now the fastest-growing stream of garbage. Lead and mercury are seeping from this waste into ground water. Some of the e-waste, however, is winding up in the sea.
- Each hour, North Americans consume and discard about 2.75 million plastic water and soda bottles; that’s 24 billion a year.
- Globally, 100 million tonnes of plastic are generated each year and at least 10 per cent of that is finding its way into the sea.
- Worldwide, each year 113 billion kilograms of small plastic pellets called nurdles–the feedstock for all disposable plastics– are shipped and billions are spilled during transfer in and out of railroad cars. Those spilled nurdles are ending up in gutters and drains and eventually carried into the ocean. Nurdles resemble fish eggs or roe. Tuna and salmon feed on them indiscriminately. Around 2.5 billion humans eat fish regularly. Plastic and other man-made toxins are polluting the global food chain and it’s rising at an unprecedented rate.
- Each year, a million sea birds and 100,000 sharks, turtles, dolphins and whales die from eating plastic.
Oceanographers and conservation biologists believe the only way to contend with the Great Pacific Garbage Patch is to slow the amount of plastic flowing from the land to the sea.
Australia is now offering the “Greatest Job in the World” as an island caretaker in the Great Barrier Reef. The job pays $105,000 (US) and includes free airfares from the winner’s home country to on the , .
In return, the “island caretaker” will be expected to stroll the white sands, snorkel the reef, take care of “a few minor tasks” — and report to a global audience via weekly blogs, photo diaries and video updates.
The successful applicant, who will stay rent-free in a three-bedroom beach home complete with plunge pool and golf buggy, must be a good swimmer, excellent communicator and be able to speak and write English.
“The fact that they will be paid to explore the islands of the Great Barrier Reef, swim, snorkel and generally live the Queensland lifestyle makes this undoubtedly the best job in the world.”
Sounds rough. Here’s more on the job description, responsibilities, and photos of the island on their website: www.islandreefjob.com
Beautiful video of locals surfers in Bangladesh.
“Here are a few images from a recent trip Kahana Kalama and Surfing the Nations went on to Bangladesh. It is a glimpse into a documentary that Russell Brownley is working on about a surf club in Bangladesh. Many of the children are street kids or come from very poor families. Some don’t even know how to swim, but their love for surfing brings them together and into a way of life they never even knew existed. An ocean that was once deemed off limits due to fear and a very conservative Islamic culture, is now becoming source of fun, escape and even a chance for a way to make a living.”
San Marcos, Guatemala has become one of the more popular destinations in Guatemala. It’s on the stunning Lake Atitlan and is the quieter sister town of San Pedro across the Lake, which has a reputation as a backpacker’s party haven. Growth and tourism has its difficulties as the the video from current.tv highlights.