I was reading an article in this month’s Backpacker magazine about thirteen-year-old Jordan Romero, who is on a quest to be the youngest person ever to climb the so-called Seven Summits. While there’s certainly no lack of controversy about Jordan’s story (he summited Aconcagua at 11, and has plans to top Everest next year), what got my interest was learning that the boy and his dad sleep in a hypoxic tent in their Big Bear, CA, home to pre-acclimatize themselves for high altitude mountaineering.
Interesting—especially considering they already live around 7000′ in elevation. I ran a search for these altitude training tents, and came up with something even more interesting: the Altolab Kit, a portable device that reduces Oxygen in the air you breath in order to simulate the effects of high altitude (more…)
Posted in Health | 6 Comments
Backpacking Light has a tremendous wealth of information on ultralight hiking strategies. Unfortunately the site is subscription-only, so most of its content is firewalled, but BPL also runs wilderness courses, including this Aug 23-Sept 5 Wilderness Trekking Long Distance class, which runs 14 days and a whopping two grand per person.
For your investment you get to learn thru-hiking techniques directly from long-distance guru Andrew Skurka plus philosophy, tips and tricks from Gossamer Gear founder Glen Van Peski. $2000 is a bit past the limits of our operating budget here at sierradescents, but you can be sneaky like me and download the course packet, which is chock full ‘o great information, plus lots of gear tips.
Posted in Hiking | 2 Comments
Lou at wildsnow.com has an essential post on how various electronic devices interfere with avalanche beacons. The quick hit on this is that several commonly carried PED’s, such as cell phones and Ipods, can render your beacon useless in search mode. Since this information is both critically important and horribly out of season, I’ll try to link back again once winter arrives. In case I forget, make sure you read—and remember—Lou & Jonathan’s article.
Posted in Avy News | 0 Comments
For those of you who didn’t go see 4th of July fireworks, first of all, shame on you! But here’s a video of the grand finale at Marina Del Rey I shot yesterday with my handicam. MDR puts on a great show every year. For a (relatively) small municipality, they sure know how to light up the sky. This is also one of the darkest skies in the LA Basin, so you don’t get too much interference from city lights. Just be creative in your parking if you go, or you’ll have a long haul home. Happy 4th of July!
Posted in California | 0 Comments
Well, I’ve reskinned most of the interior pages of sierradescents back to the good old boring gray. I imagine the pink look raised some eyebrows for first-time visitors who were just looking for a gear review or two, but the occasion seemed to call for more than just business as usual.
I think I’ll leave the pink pages up here on the home page for a while longer. Last night was our daughter’s first night home. She would cry and I did my best to get her back to sleep. Then our son would start crying in his room, so I’d go there and calm him down. Then I’d get back in bed and our daughter would cry again. And back and forth. Maybe I should rekindle my old “this is good training for Williamson” mantra.
Speaking of Williamson, since I’m going to be on climbing hiatus for July (most likely), I’m thinking of trying to do a write up a trip I did two years ago up the West Face in June. I got a lot of good photos from that, but never got around to writing about the hike. Doing Williamson via Shepherd Pass and the West Face is a great step up from Whitney’s Mountaineer’s Route, if you’re looking for a next-big-trip kind of progression.
For now, there will be a lot more diapers than dihedrals in my immediate future, so please forgive me if updates are a little sparse. I am tossing in some new gear reviews here and there, but if you’re like me, you’ll want a little more meat with your content. Happy 4th of July everyone!
Posted in Musings, News | 0 Comments