Adventure Links of the Week

When we’re not outdoors, we get our adventure fix by exploring social media and the web. Here are some of the best adventure links we’ve discovered this week.

Zanskar Forty Years On: Forty years ago, Guy Baker trained a group of kayakers to tackle an unknown river in the Himalaya. One member of the group struggled with severe altitude sickness, and they had to make some difficult decisions.

Eventually, the untested group pushed their limits and achieved more than they ever thought possible. Forty years later, Baker headed out again onto that tributary, pondering the changes to the river and themselves over those years.

A bananas triathlon

The World’s Most Remote Triathlon: Rapa Nui (Easter Island) hosts the world’s most remote and bizarre triathlon. Locals train all year for this event, which celebrates their traditions.

The race starts with Vaka Ama — open-water rafting. Then, after heaving their hand-woven vessels ashore, they start the Aka Venga. This involves running with 44-pound bunches of bananas over your shoulders. The last stage is Natació con Pora, where contestants use small rafts for body-boarding.

The weighted banana run.

The weighted banana run. Photo: Easter Island Travel


The Island That Inspired the World’s Oldest Travel Story: Laura Coffey’s love of Homer’s The Odyssey led to a fascination with Greek mythology. She wanted to see the places mentioned in the epic poem.

In this excerpt from the book she wrote about her adventure, she heads to Menorca, off the coast of Spain. Some scholars believe that the Cyclops dwelled somewhere in this island group. Coffey set out on her bike looking for clues. Was this where Odysseus tricked the one-eyed Cyclops and incurred the wrath of Poseidon?

It ain’t all glory

Inside the Life of a Climbing Photographer: Being an adventure photographer sounds like a dream job. In this podcast, Jeremiah Watt talks to the American Alpine Club about what it takes to excel in this profession.

He delves into how to get the perfect shot, how trends in climbing photography have changed, the mistakes all beginners make, and the difficulty of climbing with camera gear.

White water on Baffin Island.

Baffin Island whitewater. Photo: Erik Boomer/Sarah McNair-Landry


A Baffin Vacation: One June, Erik Boomer and Sarah McNair-Landry set out for a month of adventure on Baffin Island. They started by skiing 100km across the ice, pulling their gear behind them. Then they set up camp and spent 10 days climbing.

Then it was onto kayaking, first a fiord, then inland in search of rivers and waterfalls. The location is so remote that rescue is doubtful if anything goes wrong. But all goes well — more than well. They then hike back to their stash of climbing gear for another 10 days in the arctic wilderness.

Searching for Healing in the Backcountry: In this episode from Breaking Trails, two athletes head on a backcountry skiing adventure. Adam Campbell is a triathlete turned ski mountaineer. Sandy Ward is a pro snowboarder. Though their expertise is different, they have one thing in common. They use the mountains to try and heal from their losses.

Arithmetic for climbers

You’ve Heard of the Ape Index. What About the Hobbit Index?: Your ape index index is the length of your arm span compared to your height. Climbers measure this in a specific way. Rather than working it out as a ratio, they take their height and subtract it from their arm span. A positive number is supposedly beneficial for climbing.

The ape index is fairly well known. Climbing suggests 10 other potentially useful measurements. For example, there is the Hobbit Index — how foot length compares to hand length. And the Index Index, how the pad size of your fingers compares to the smallest hold on a climb.

Will Alex Honnold Ever Tackle Mount Everest? Alex Honnold shot to fame after Free Solo but is on daddy duty after the birth of his second child in February. Here, he reflects on his plans. He speaks about his new documentary Arctic Ascent, his hopes of climbing the Tango Towers in Pakistan, and whether he would attempt a high-altitude climb — even Everest.

Rebecca McPhee

Rebecca McPhee is a freelance writer for ExplorersWeb.

Rebecca has been writing about open water sports, adventure travel, and marine science for three years. Prior to that, Rebecca worked as an Editorial Assistant at Taylor and Francis, and a Wildlife Officer for ORCA.

Based in the UK Rebecca is a science teacher and volunteers for a number of marine charities. She enjoys open water swimming, hiking, diving, and traveling.