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The Rules of the Game - Le
Regole del Gioco The Rules of the Game - Le Regole del Gioco  by Gabriele Roth

Evey year, when the "good" season comes, we can read about the "killer-mountain", about tragedies on the mountains and (tanks to the power of media) we can see "live" the spectacular (commercial) reports of a rescue (if all is OK) or to the recovery of (more or less) unlucky climbers

And each time we must read and listen to the comments of the so-called (bigheaded) "specialists": people speaking and passing opinions with no knowledge about the sites and the situations of the accident and, basing on theories absorbed from books and magazines, make judgements about the more or less wrong behaviour of the unlucky climbers ...

Chasing the Light Chasing the Light  by Mark Doiron

Photography is all about light. That should be patently obvious to even the most casual observer. In fact, let me submit to you that it is patently obvious to the casual observer: Of the thirteen pages of photos I've posted on SP, almost every one of the photos below appear on the first page. Almost without exception, the remaining twelve pages of photos do not have particularly notable lighting.

Thunder &
Lightning - In Memory of An Old Friend Thunder & Lightning - In Memory of An Old Friend  by lcarreau

The U.S. National Weather Service calculates a ONE-in-THREE hundred chance that you or a family member will be struck by lighting sometime during your lifetime.

Lightning bolts are extremely hot, with temperatures of 30,000 to 50,000 degrees (F). That's HOTTER than the surface of the sun! When the bolt suddenly heats the air around it to such an extreme, the air instantly expands, sending out a vibration or shock wave we hear as an explosion of sound. If you are near the stroke of lightning you'll hear thunder as one sharp crack. When lightning is far away, thunder sounds more like a low rumble as the sound waves reflect off hillsides, buildings and trees. Depending on wind direction and temperature, you may hear thunder for up to twenty miles away.

The Land of Highest Peaks on Earth Baltistan, The Land of Highest Peaks on Earth  by Afzal

Baltistan covering an area of 26,000 square kilometer, comprises 5 vallys: Skardu, Khaplu, Shigar, Kharmang and Rondu. The Baltistan is the part of Northern Areas of Pakistan. These vallys are very important from the mountaineering, trekking and mountain related adventure activities. The northern territory of Baltistan contains four peak above 8000 meters, such as K-2 (8611-M) (Second highest mountain in the world), Gasherbrum-I (8068-m), Broad Peak (8048-m), and Gaserbrum-II (8035-m), and many other above 7000 meters peaks, such as Masherbrum, Gasherbrum-IV, Muztagh Towers, Latok, Baintha Brakk, Chogolisa, Baltoro Kangri, and many more.

Sunset - Il
Tramonto Sunset - Il Tramonto  by Gabriele Roth

Only 3 days ago I heard about the recent death of an old ski-mountaneering partner of mine : I was 35 and, due to some differences in our opinions with the new director of the ski-mountaneering school where I was a instructor, I decided to look for amusement: two 55 y.o. boys shared with me the idea and instead of 6 boring teorethical lessons on the snow we enjoyed 6 first class routes. The partnership went on for some seasons, even with some not difficult rock climbs, amusing like children in front of a new toy: then we lost due to different family and work engagements (I heard that the other one was found dead, leaning to a tree, in a wood where he was hiking alone)

Two days ago I met an old rope partner of mine, a member of the elite of Italian Alpin Club: we spent together unforgettable days, looking for pure amusement in rock climbing ... wow ... Now he is 80 but is still oriented to go to make something on the mountains, I hope that the old rope team will be formed again, for easy rock climbs.

Last week I felt like doing a trip in little known sites so I met a 58 and a 76 y.o. boys, age doesn't matter if you feel a boy

Trail Building and
Maintenance Trail Building and Maintenance  by DamOTclese

Have you ever wondered how the hiking and nature trails get built, or how theyre maintained (if theyre maintained at all?) Well, its hard work, as you might expect, probably the hardest unpaid volunteer work one can do out in the outdoors and still have a whole lot of fun while doing it.

Almost a year ago a band of extremely hearty and physically fit individuals undertook to clear every downed tree from the Mount Waterman Trail located in the Angeles National Forest of Southern California, a very popular hiking trail that has a good view of the Mount Wilson Observatory facility way off in the distance.

Meeting the Great Bear Meeting the Great Bear  by Bob Sihler

There is probably no other animal quite as iconic in the American West, and perhaps in the American psyche, as the grizzly bear. 800 or so pounds of sinew and flesh (they can get up to 1500 pounds, but the largest in the Rockies are "only" around half that), claws and fangs the size of a man's finger and as sharp as any cat's, the short-burst speed of a thoroughbred horse, and a skull so thick that anything but a perfectly placed shot from a high-caliber gun will only enrage it and virtually guarantee certain doom for the unlucky or unwise antagonist-- that is the monster that haunts the forests and the slopes of the Northern Rockies.

But it is less than a monster, and more. Far fewer humans have died under the claws and the teeth of grizzlies than grizzlies have died through the gunsights of rifles wielded by the ultimate predator-- Man. Well more than 95% of the time, when a grizzly and a human meet, it is the grizzly who either runs in terror or ignores the other. No, it is no monster. Yet it more than just a beast. The grizzly has a spiritual connection to the ancient, wild world; it is both honored and feared in native tradition, and it is a bellwether for the health of the larger ecosystem. It vies only with the wolf as the enduring symbol of the American wilderness, and as the creature most demonized.

Water, How Much is Too
Much? Water, How Much is Too Much?  by FlatheadNative

On January 12, 2007, a 28-year old Californian wife and mother of three children died from drinking too much water. She was found dead at her home after drinking an estimated two gallons in a short time during a contest to win a Wii machine. Despite noticeable discomfort and complaints the promoters continued the contest. She died of water intoxication.

Water, How Much is Enough? Water, How Much is Enough?  by FlatheadNative

It is said that “Humans can live forty days without food, about three days without water and about eight minutes without oxygen.”

Without water life ceases very rapidly. Water is critical in aiding all functions of the body.
As the basis for sustaining life the balance of fluid level must be maintained. About 10 cups of water are lost each day by sweating, restroom routines and through the respiratory system. Those are just normal things that all of us do …. day in and day out.

Climber’s Guide to Prevention of Sun Damage A Climber’s Guide to Prevention of Sun Damage  by FlatheadNative

As we all know sunlight is a powerful source of energy. While sunlight is crucial for many processes on the earth such as heat and production of oxygen through photosynthesis; sunlight can also be damaging to the human body with just a little exposure.

Sunlight is measured in what is called “solar constant” which is equal to the amount of power the sun deposits in a specific area. Without the atmosphere protecting the earth, the solar constant would be 1,370 watts per square meter. But due to the atmosphere the solar constant drops down over 20 percent to 1,000 watts per square meter. The higher in elevation the less protection we receive from the atmosphere. In comparison consider that a toaster requires about 1,000 watts to toast four slices of bread.

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