ExWeb’s Adventure Links of the Week

When we’re not outdoors, we get our adventure fix by exploring social media and the web. Sometimes we’re a little too plugged in and browsing adventure reads can turn from minutes to hours. To nourish your own adventure fix, here are some of the best adventure links we’ve discovered this week.

A Climbing Award That May Be a Winner’s Last: The Piolet d’Or, or Golden Ice Axe, is alpine climbing’s biggest award. But whether it honors or encourages risk is debated in the sport. A hot debate on social media centres around this piece itself, with climbing writer Andrew Bisaharat calling it “stupid clickbait garbage”.

Why Paper Maps Still Matter in the Digital Age: With the proliferation of smartphones, it’s easy to assume that the era of the paper map is over. That attitude, that digital is better than print, is what Meredith Broussad calls “technochauvinism” in this piece arguing on behalf of printed maps.


Apparently using a paper map may help with route recall. Photo: Shutterstock


The Story of Hard Cheese: One for trad climbing lovers. Old-school British climbers Craig and Rob Matheson talk about their new and very hard line in the mountains of the Lake District, which is tipped to be one of the hardest traditional climbs in the UK. The entertaining video interview describes how the route was named after a rat nibbled a yellow climbing mat.

Purja in the spotlight

Interview: Nims Purja, the ‘unknown’ Mountaineer Who Smashed the 8,000m Peaks Record: In recent weeks, Nirmal Purja launched his film, 14 Peaks: Nothing Is Impossible. Between signing autographs and flexing his biceps for swooning onlookers at the Kendal Mountain Festival in the UK, Purja sat down with Grough Magazine for a chat. Apparently the new film “is going to replace Rocky IV.” I don’t think even Nims can trump Sly Stallone.

Mountaineer Nirmal Purja: ‘I’m sick of people saying things are impossible’: Another good interview with Purja. The Nepali adventurer on the world’s 14 highest peaks — and climbing while hungover.

Paradise or boredom? It all depends. Photo: Shutterstock


Cabin life isn’t for everyone

I Moved to a Remote Cabin to Write, and I Hate It: What to do if you followed your dream only to realize it wasn’t what you wanted after all. Dogsled racer Blair Braverman doles out the advice to one forlorn writer who moved out to the Montana hinterland only to get lonely and bored with the lifestyle.

Alpine Photography – The Challenges and Rewards: Vancouver Island-based Adam Gibbs, the 2018 International Landscape Photographer of the Year, covers some of the challenges and rewards of alpine photography in an episode of his popular YouTube series. The associated Layers in the Landscape episode is good too.

Diving with a Tiger Shark. Photo: Shutterstock


Here, Sharky, Sharky: In the sea off South Africa’s Dyer Island, shark mania and risk adventure have combined with a vengeance. For a few bucks, one of a gang of ill-qualified, ill-equipped dive operators will drop you into the most dangerous waters on earth. Problem is, no one’s promising to get you safely back. [Note: This is a Tim Cahill classic from 2001.]

How Fast Can You Skydive?

Like Formula 1 drivers with no brakes, speed skydivers compete to fall faster and faster. So far, the record is a blistering 318.74mph (513kph). The secret: Avoid “the wobbles” at all costs.

Photo: David Cherry/USPA