SNEWS best outdoor reads from around the web

Read about some sweet contests at Backpacker Magazine and how the New York City Marathon will go on.

What did the SNEWS team read this week that other industry insiders might find interesting? Read on to find out.

  • We’re not quite sure why you haven’t yet entered these contests sponsored by Backpacker Magazine. All you have to do is read this entry on the Backpacker website, write a 500 word essay or 3-minute video describing your dream backpacking trip and BOOM — it could be yours!
  • Dream backpacking trips are all well and good, but be careful what outdoor gear you pack with you when you’re on them. According to this New York Daily News story, plenty of outdoor gear these days is coated in chemicals that could be detrimental to the environment. Greenpeace tested 14 rain jackets from prominent outdoor companies (read the story to find out which), and all 14 samples tested positive for PFCs, which is used to keep us dry during outdoor excursions.
  • The only time we can recall being scared in the great outdoors was during a media trip in Yosemite when another reporter accidentally unzipped our tent after waking up to pee in the middle of the night. Our first thought was, “Bear!” followed by, “Man this bear is skilled at unzipping tents!” Then logic followed disproving both conclusions. This Wausa Daily Herald story gives another outdoor writers account of how he’s also never really been scared in the great outdoors and advises others should stay calm as fear generally leads to panic.
  • Aw! We love cute couple stories! Check out this one in New York Magazine about a few couples who make adventures the focus of their vacations. We particularly enjoyed reading the “High-Altitude Adventurers” story about a young couple, both medical professionals, who traveled to Revelstoke, British Columbia for their snowboarding vacation.
  • If you’re going to do something, do it right. A hike is no exception. But if you’re not quite sure how to execute the “right” kind of hike, check out this Men’s Fitness story on how to get it done. Men’s Fitness Editor Cat Perry hiked the Grand Canyon Rim to Rim to Rim and quenched her thirst for adventure. Check out her tale.
  • We are most certainly not fans of bears eating our faces, so naturally we don’t want to do anything to turn that possibility into a reality, even it if means forgoing our favorite scent and super-minty toothpaste (and going for a more natural, less odorous variety) while on a backpacking trip. This Gadling story said the things that attract bears the most are scented things like deodorant or toothpaste. Face it: On a multiday backpacking trip you’re going to smell terrible, so leave your fragrances behind.
  • Let’s be honest. The SNEWS team is full of born leaders, but we took away a few tips from this Ottawa Citizen story anyway. This story gives you tips on how to organize an outdoor excursion and stay in control of the group no matter what kinds of tensions or problems flare up.
  • We are all anxiously waiting to hear what the location of future Outdoor Retailer Summer and Winter Markets will be. But until then, Utah officials seem to be doing everything they can to keep the trade show in their beloved state after its contract expires in 2014. Check out this Boulder County Business Register story about what exactly it is they’re doing to keep the show from moving on.
  • If we could, we’d ban Nintendo DS. For life. Or at least put them on a string and dangle them in front of the little ones in our lives while hiking up a trail. Getting kids outdoors and away is vital to our industry. Check out this Davis Enterprise post promoting Patagonia Books’ author Dylan Tomine’s book. Maybe even buy the book yourself, which chronicles how Tomine got his two technological junkie teenagers hooked on the outdoors.

Have you read anything interesting you’d like to share with us? Maybe we’ll include it next week’s column with a little shout out to whoever sent it to us. Send a link to the story with the subject line “SNEWS Reads” to be considered.

–Compiled by Ana Trujillo