Category Archives: Adventure

Friday Faves: Protecting Wild Places and Helping Haiti

James Balog of the Extreme Ice Survey will speak next Friday at The Conservation Alliance's breakfast in Salt Lake City. The Extreme Ice Survey is the most wide-ranging glacier study ever conducted using ground-based, real-time photography.

This week at Under Solen, we’ve been gearing up for next week’s Outdoor Retailer show in Salt Lake City. While all of our heads will be swimming with meetings, happy hours and gear, we’re hoping to keep our eye on the the thread that holds all of this together — protecting those incredible wild places that keep our industry alive and kicking.

So, we thought we’d give a shout-out to a couple great groups that are walking the walk this week.

The Conservation Alliance


Since thier founding in 1989, the Conservation Alliance has contributed more than $7 million to conservation projects throughout North America — protecting more than 49 million acres of land, stop or remove 27 dams, and preserve access to thousands of miles of rivers and several climbing areas. The Alliance is a group of outdoor industry companies that disburses its collective annual membership dues to grassroots environmental organizations to protect threatened wild habitat, preferably where outdoor enthusiasts recreate. The Alliance was founded in 1989 by industry leaders REI, Patagonia, The North Face, and Kelty, who shared the goal of increasing outdoor industry support for conservation efforts.

Mark your calendars for their awesome breakfast at 7a.m. on Friday at the Marriot. We know it’s early, but this will give you the inspiration you need to get revved up for a day at the show. Look forward to founder and director of The Extreme Ice Survey, James Balog to give a stunning look at the impact abrupt climate change is having on the world’s glaciers.

And make sure to stop by participating booths to support the Alliance! Whether you’re looking for some wild inspiration, a rockin’ party or some sweet gear that benefits a great cause – they have packed line-up.

The Epicocity Project and iLCP Flathead RAVE

Grizzly bear captured on film by iLCP photographer Joe Riis ©iLCP Flathead RAVE

The Epicocity Project’s thought-provoking new film — Flathead Wild — will premiere at the Wild & Scenic Film Festival at the Nevada Theater in Nevada City, Calif. Saturday, Jan. 16 before going on tour.

Proposed mountaintop removal mining in southeastern British Columbia, Canada is threatening one of America’s most endangered rivers and one of North America’s wildest remaining valley — The Flathead. Flathead Wild follows the International League of Conservation Photographers (iLCP) as they descend on the Flathead River Valley, along with local conservation groups, to take breathtaking and iconic images of the threatened ecosystem. These images then act as tools for the Flathead coalition to help tip the scales in favor of protection and conservation.

Flathead Wild is also now available online. Help Epicocity spread the word by linking to the film on your blog, Facebook and Twitter and send it to your friends and family!

Helping Haiti

And we wanted to once again highlight how we can help folks in Haiti. Earlier this week, an earthquake registering 7.0 on the Richter scale hit Haiti. Centered just outside of the populated capital, Port-au-Prince, the quake’s effects have been devastating. Within less than 24 hours the outpouring of international support has been impressive.

So how can you take part? Here’s just a small collection of what’s out there.

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Filed under Adventure, climate change, Friday Faves, Impact, Non-profits, Outdoors, Rivers

Epicocity Project’s New Film — Flathead WILD — Premiering At Wild & Scenic

The Epicocity Project’s awesome new film — Flathead Wild — will premiere at the Wild & Scenic Film Festival at the Nevada Theater in Nevada City, Calif. Saturday, Jan. 16.

Proposed mountaintop removal mining in southeastern British Columbia, Canada is threatening one of America’s most endangered rivers and one of North America’s wildest remaining valley — The Flathead. Flathead Wild follows the International League of Conservation Photographers (iLCP) as they descend on the Flathead River Valley, along with local conservation groups, to take breathtaking and iconic images of the threatened ecosystem. These images then act as tools for the Flathead coalition to help tip the scales in favor of protection and conservation.

Flathead Wild is also now available online. Help Epicocity spread the word by linking to the film on your blog, Facebook and Twitter and send it to your friends and family!

© Joe Riis, iLCP Flathead RAVE

“Change is inevitable, but we have the opportunity here to protect an irreplaceable wildland and natural resource. If we let the Flathead fall to mining pressures — we will never be able to bring it back,” said Ryland Nelson, the Southern Rockies program coordinator of Wildsight. “With a free-flowing, pristine river and the highest concentration of inland grizzlies in North America, the Flathead Valley is one of the most biologically important places on earth — we have to act now for our environment, wildlife and present and future generations.”

© Christina Mittermeier, iLCP Flathead RAVE
It’s up to us to save this wild place. We have to act now — not tomorrow, or a year from now — we have to take action now. Please pass this video on to your friends, family, everyone! Here’s the link: http://www.vimeo.com/7775085. Write a blog about it, post it on Facebook and Twitter. We can do it! Let’s save the Flathead!

PHOTOS © iLCP Flathead RAVE

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Filed under Adventure, Impact, Non-profits, Outdoors, Rivers

Take Part in Something Amazing: Submit Your Film to Mountainfilm Festival 2010

Photo by Jennifer Koskinen

Art + Adventure + Culture + Environment. Does it get any better than that?

In its 32nd year, Mountainfilm Festival is so much more than a film festival. It’s a four-day six-senses experience of all those things we love: art, adventure, culture and environment. With the motto “Celebrating the Indomitable Spirit” it’s hard not to get excited.

The festival takes place over Memorial Day Weekend (this year May 28-31), and although it might seem a little early to be making travel plans, if you’re a filmmaker, you’ll want to pay attention. Submissions for the 2010 festival are still being accepted, and if you submit before January 12, 2010 the submission fee is only $60. Submit by February 12, 2010 and your fee bumps up to $70. (Short films — 20 minutes or less — have a submission fee of $25 and will be accepted until February 12, 2010).

Why submit? Because Mountainfilm “is America’s premier festival celebrating achievement in mountain, adventure, culture and environment.”

What do they accept? Mountainfilm accepts and screens films – doc and narrative, feature and short – on a broad range of subjects. They’re particularly into quirky causes and indomitable spirit. Learn more about submitting here. To get a feel for the festival you can also check out a list of last year’s films, and others, here.

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Filed under Adventure, Events, Non-profits, travel

Looking Forward To More Conservation Wins In 2010

Oregon's Mount Hood Photo © John McAnulty

As we launch into 2010, many of us are planning new adventures in wild places across America. Before we get too far into the new year, here at Under Solen, we are taking a quick moment to be thankful for last year’s conservation victories that protected these places.

In 2009, Congress passed the Omnibus Public Land Management Act. In total, the landmark legislation designated 2 million acres of Wilderness, 1,100 miles of Wild and Scenic Rivers and closed the 1.2-million-acre Wyoming Range to new oil and gas development. One of the big driving forces behind this victory was the outdoor industry.

Of the projects in the legislation, 13 were supported by grants from The Conservation Alliance — a group of outdoor industry companies that disburses its collective annual membership dues to grassroots environmental organizations. Their goal: to engage businesses to fund and partner with organizations to protect wild places for their habitat and recreation values. Well, good on them, because last year was a huge success! Check out specific projects on on their website.

We’re stoked to play hard in these newly protected places and work even harder to keep the conservation victories coming in 2010!

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Filed under Adventure, Impact, Outdoors, Rivers, Things we like

Winter Inspiration: Time Lapse Video of Northern Lights

We’re in high winter gear here at Under Solen HQ and so our eyes are ever intrigued by anything that features one of our favorite seasons. We can’t embed it here, but you absolutely must go and check out this time lapse video of the northern lights, documented over the Ringebu Fjell in Norway, part of the super cool project The World At Night.

Do you have any fantastic winter sky pictures? We want to see them! Leave the link to your photo in the comments below.

[Via: Boing Boing]

[Photo: TWAN]

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Filed under Adventure, Outdoors, photos, Things we like

Get Out and Play!

Now that you’ve consumed way too many Christmas cookies, it’s time to get outdoors. How do you plan to spend the next few winter days? We’re hoping it’s outside!

Need some help? Here are some great resources for planning winter adventures:

  • Backcountry Etiquette – Great tips from out friends over at Winter Wildlands Alliance. Also be sure to check out their great page of Huts/Shops/Guides which should help in all kinds of backcountry planning.
  • Snowshoe Magazine – Chock full of tips and information to help you plan out everything from a quick day trip to a more extended adventure.
  • She Jumps – A great network to get women in the outdoors. Check them out and get involved!
  • Cross Country Ski Areas Association – Sear trails and resorts all over the U.S. and Canada.

You’ve got absolutely no excuse for staying indoors… so get out and play.

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Slackliners Ask Boulder to Ease Restrictions in Boulder Canyon and City Parks

My good friend, and slackline master, Andy Lewis is heading up a group of Boulder slackliners to lobby the city of Boulder to allow the sport in Boulder Canyon, other open space areas and city parks.

From Colorado Daily:

Local slackline enthusiasts are lobbying the city of Boulder to relax its rules and allow the sport in

A boom in popularity and a community of about 100 slackline “addicts” has meant more people practicing the sport — and drawing more attention. Earlier this month, police were called about someone slacklining — walking on a narrow, flat nylon line that’s not pulled taut — in Boulder Canyon, but the person was down by the time rangers arrived.

Larkin Carey, with the Colorado Slackline Club, said Boulder’s law against attaching anything to trees in public places generally hadn’t been enforced. Slacklining on open space, where it’s not an “approved” use, also hadn’t been an issue in the past.

But this spring, with more people slacklining and highlining — slacklining up high — police got calls and people were asked to take down the lines, Carey said.

“Since it’s fairly new, people are trying to figure out if it’s a problem,” he said. “It looks dangerous, so people take notice. But it’s actually very safe.”

To see Andy and a few of the masters in action, check out the video below of them walking the highline in Dream Canyon.

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Filed under Adventure, Outdoors, Things we like, video