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.

This Village Produces Some of the World’s Strongest Mountaineers: On Feb. 26, 2016, Ali Sadpara, Alex Dixon, and Simone Moro made the first winter ascent of Nanga Parbat. All Pakistan celebrated, and Ali became a national hero. He had been the key to the team’s success. He carried huge loads, rigged most of the lines, and broke trail. Ali later died on Winter K2.

Sadpara is also the name of Ali’s village, and it is one of many in Pakistan that churn out some of the world’s strongest mountaineers. With no formal training programs, they learn from local mentors. For many young men, high-altitude work is the occupation of choice. There is always work in the Death Zone, but as mentors dwindle, it is becoming a more dangerous option.

A lucky escape

Veteran Survives Grizzly Attack: Shayne Burke was hiking in the Grand Teton National Park when he saw a bear cub 50 meters ahead of him. Within moments, the cub’s mother attacked him. It bit him several times and slammed him into the ground.

Luckily, he had grabbed a can of bear spray when he saw the cub, locked his hands behind his neck, and turned onto his stomach. As the bear turned her attention to his neck, she bit into the can of bear spray, and it exploded in her mouth. This frightened her enough to leave Burke alone. He is expected to make a full recovery.

Salto Encantado Provincial Park under the dark skies of Misiones. Photo: Alejandro Sommer


The Argentinean Community Saving the Stars: In the jungle of Misiones, the Yvytu Porá Guarani community works to save their ancient knowledge of the stars. Their region sits between the light pollution of Paraguay and Brazil, creating a corridor of darkness.

In this strip of dark night sky, the stars shine like pinpoints. The community holds evening events in the darkest locations to share their ancestors’ stories and knowledge of the night sky with visitors.

As part of the nocturnal conservation efforts, they hope to become an International Dark Sky Reserve. If they achieve this, the Misiones could become the only place in the world with protected sky, soil, and waters.

New Portuguese marathon trail opens soon

The World’s Longest Circular Hiking Trail: Portugal plans to create the world’s longest circular hiking route. Tourists flock to the country, but most head to the same few areas. Authorities hope the new trail will entice visitors to other parts of the country.

The trail will run for 3,000km through 100 “off-the beaten-track” attractions nationwide. They hope the first three sections will open this July, with a further 12 completed by the end of the year.


Man Recounts Controversial Whale Ride: Thirty years ago, Man Rides Whale was headline news. A southern right whale had appeared in Bermagui Harbour and was blocking its entrance. Andrew Curven put on his wetsuit and went to take a closer look.

Swimming around the animal, he was in awe of how big it was, and the whale was just as inquisitive about him. Then the whale disappeared below the water. When it surfaced, Curven was on top of it. He crawled up the animal and stood on its back.

Jerks or fonts of knowledge?

A Rationalization of Surfing’s Wonderful Lawlessness: No one owns the ocean, but it may seem like the local surfers do on some beaches. Or at least so they seem to think.

Surfers are often depicted in media as jerks. That might sometimes be true, but most of the time, you are witnessing frustration. Frustration at the newbies getting in their way, or the person who cuts to the front of the line, or the swimmers in the surf zone.

Brian Sousa argues that having some kind of pecking order in surfing is needed for order and consistency. That the locals acting like they own the place are actually a fountain of knowledge.

Photo: Purnima Shrestha


Her Mount Everest Record May Inspire More Nepali Women: Nepali mountaineer Purnima Shrestha summited Mount Everest three times in 13 days. She is the first woman to ascend this often in one season.

On May 25, she and her guide were the only two people to reach the summit. Spending almost an hour at the top she was overwhelmed with emotion. She originally went to Everest as a photojournalist, and improbably fell in love with the place.

Hiking the Camino Helped This Queer Backpacker: On May 14, 2022, Renee Pelletier started hiking the Camino De Santiago. She wanted to do it to test her mental resilience and physical ability. A gender-non-conforming lesbian, she joined a program at her local gym that was welcoming to the queer and transgender community to get ready for the hike.

Doing her first overnight training hike with other members of the queer community was a powerful experience and set her up for the Camino. On her 35-day trek through Spain, she realized how comfortable she now felt around other people.

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.