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Passion and Purpose

Category: Uncategorized (page 1 of 13)

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Follow your dreams and make new tracks.

Happy 2019!


US National Parks for free this Saturday

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Google Street View releases seven more maps of Canadian national parks

Jackie Dunham,

In anticipation of Earth Day on Sunday, Google Street View added seven new parks to its catalogue of digitally mapped parks on Thursday to bring the total number to 167, or approximately 75 per cent of Parks Canada spaces. The latest additions include Nááts’ihch’oh National Park Reserve, Terra Nova National Park, the Lake Louise area in Banff National Park, Glacier National Park, Mount Revelstoke National Park, West Coast Trail in the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve, and Nahanni National Park Reserve.

This is a list of Parks Canada destinations currently available via Google Street View.

If you’re married to adventure, is there room for anyone else?

Melanie Hamlett, Washington Post:

The threat of death forces a rare kind of intimacy at lightning speed. Despite the intensity of those situations, I was never that scared. Rather this is what terrifies me: A man I know rather well and care about deeply, realizing how brutish and imperfect I am.

My boyfriend is embarrassingly romantic; he’s one of the smartest, kindest men I’ve met. But he’s never slept outside or climbed, nor lived in a truck for years on end like his half-wolf girlfriend has. So how we get along so well, or even found each other, baffles me.

Being a Patricia Pan — a grown woman who lives for adventure and sees commitment as imprisonment — I’ve always assumed I’d end up with a Peter Pan, or more likely no one at all. Patricia Pans don’t need no man! We’re too busy rafting down Class IV rivers and couch-surfing around South America to be bothered with such nonsense.

But in the past few years, I’ve finally been willing to date seriously, and I’ve noticed myself swiping left on the adrenaline junkies I used to go for. Especially if they’re proud “dirtbags,” meaning climber-types who drink wine out of recycled bean cans and repair our down jackets with duct tape.

Cute shoes are useless, and other lessons learned from travelling around the Americas for three months

Jada Yuan, the New York Times’ 52 Places correspondent, has spent the past three months on the road, visiting a new spot every week, as she has travelled through the Americas for the first leg of her yearlong trip around the world.

In this piece, Jada answers some questions from her readers. (paywall)

Who was the first person to reach the North Pole?

National Geographic:

Reaching the North Pole is no small feat. While many believe the first person to accomplish this daunting task was either Robert Peary or Frederick Cook, the title might actually belong to an African American explorer named Matthew Henson.

REI to require sustainability standards from every brand it sells

This will put pressure on Mountain Equipment Coop (MEC) in Canada, as well as other retailers around the world, to do the same.

Justin Housman, Adventure Journal:

REI just announced an ambitious new plan that will likely shape your outdoor goods retail experience in coming years.

By 2020, everything sold at REI—regardless of brand—will be held to seriously lofty sustainability standards. That bike rack you need to buy for your Subaru? It will be manufactured according to fair and safe labor practices, no matter what logo is on it. Need a new down midlayer? Responsibly sourced down will be your only option. No more sketchy flame-retardant chemicals on tents. Hydration systems completely free from BPAs. No sunscreen with reef-destroying chemicals.

If REI sells a product, they will have made sure it was made humanely, by fairly treated workers, with a minimal environmental impact. This will be true for all thousand-plus brands REI carries.

NASA provides us Tour of the Moon in 4K high resolution

NASA Goddard:

Take a virtual tour of the Moon in all-new 4K resolution, thanks to data provided by NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft. As the visualization moves around the near side, far side, north and south poles, we highlight interesting features, sites, and information gathered on the lunar terrain.

Music Provided By Killer Tracks: “Never Looking Back” – Frederick Wiedmann. “Flying over Turmoil” – Benjamin Krause & Scott Goodman.

This video is public domain and along with other supporting visualizations can be downloaded from the Scientific Visualization Studio at:

Credit: NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center/David Ladd

How tall is Mount Everest? It depends.

The height of Mount Everest is widely recognized as 29,029 feet. But the calculation is inexact and subject to multiple factors.

Teams from around the world, including China, Denmark, Italy, India, and the USA have come up with other calculations, which have sometimes strayed a little bit higher, or a little bit lower, than that figure.

Italy, in 1992, lopped seven feet off the standard height, measuring it at 29,022 feet. In 1999, a measurement by American scientists pushed the peak a little higher, saying the mountain reached 29,035 feet.

Now, for the first time, Nepal is sending a team of surveyors to the summit to settle the “How tall?” question for themselves. More than a little bit of national pride is at stake.

Bhadra Sharma and Kai Schultz, The New York Times:

“Mount Everest is our treasure,” said Buddhi Narayan Shrestha, the former director general of Nepal’s Department of Survey. “What will happen if foreign experts continue to reduce the height of our mountain without us participating?”

Video: Gorkha — The Gift of Sight


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