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In Downturned Economic Times, Outdoor Recreation Brings Promising Growth

June 28th, 2012

Call it what you will: an economic downturn, a recession, the second great depression — these are relatively rough times. But as it turns out, in the midst of the economic madness, outdoor recreation is actually booming by creating the likes of $6.1 million in direct American jobs and $646 billion in consumer spending each year. Add to those numbers that a recent OIA Outdoor Recreation Economy shows that outdoor recreation has created $39.9 billion in federal tax revenue and $39.7 billion in state and local tax revenue and you have solid (and seriously impressive) proof that the outdoor industry is darn good for our faltering economy.

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adventure, causes , , , ,

Telluride Bluegrass Festival Delights For Its 39th Time

June 26th, 2012

If you look the definition of bluegrass up in a trusty ol’ Merriam-Webster dictionary you’ll see this:

country music played on unamplified stringed instruments (as banjo, fiddle, guitar, and mandolin) and characterized by free improvisation and close usually high-pitched harmony

What you won’t see in the dictionary or read in its definition is the heart, soul and spirit that goes into the music and the incredible celebrations that revolve around the music, such as the Telluride Bluegrass Festival, which is entirely dedicated to enjoying all that bluegrass is.

In its 39th year, the Telluride Bluegrass Festival coincided perfectly (and yet again) with the Summer Solstice, when the sun shines longer than any other day of the year and provides the perfect backdrop for days of musical delight. From Thursday, June 21 through Sunday, the 24, music began in the mid morning and lasted through to midnight, with a lineup of performers with a variety of roots and sounds. Second to last performer Glen Hansard performed on Sunday night; you can get a sample of his newest sounds by clicking on the video below:

Over 39 years, many other performers have brought their unique bluegrass styles to the stage. Via the Festival’s site:

“Since its very beginning, the festival has embraced a wide swath of roots music to create the unique genre of “Telluride Bluegrass.” Recent lineups have welcomed Robert Plant, Mumford & Sons, The Decemberists, Elvis Costello, Emmylou Harris, David Byrne, Ani DiFranco, Lyle Lovett, Ryan Adams, Counting Crows, Bonnie Raitt, Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros, and so many more.”

PHOTO Via: Planet Bluegrass’ Facebook page

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Events, Music Festivals, Osprey Culture, video , , , ,

Adventure Saves The World: Outside in Aspen with Osprey

June 25th, 2012

I only wish this was a real cover of me on Outside Magazine, but alas, it is just a fun promo souvenir from my participation in Outside In Aspen.

In addition to lots of fun activities at the event, I was asked to be a member of a pro-athlete panel for the closing event Adventure Saves the World.

At first I was put off by the title, as I am always mortified by the carbon footprint of even my human-powered expeditions. Then I received an outline, from moderator Mike Roberts, executive editor of the Outside — and to my surprise and delight, this guy wanted to dig deep! He had quotes from Will Gadd, spouting about the BS of many expeditions with a cause, to the polar opposite — powerful athletes really making a difference, like Jake Norton, fighting for clean drinking water. Were we going to have to put on boxing gloves and fight it out? Were many people just using expeditions to raise money for their hedonistic activities under the fake umbrella of a cause?

Turns out, all the world champion athletes at this symposium were all in favor of philanthropy, but all had some key points that charity givers should note…

Polar Explorer Eric Larsen talked up the benefits of bringing nature’s gifts into the classroom with social media, and noted that donated money should go to the cause — not to fund an expedition’s travel expenses.

Willie Kern responded eloquently regarding how effective we were in reaching millions, saying that if even one person was inspired or changed, that made it all worthwhile. Olympic snowboarder Chris Klug mentioned that he is flooded with emails from organ donation recipients like himself, inspired to do even more with their new lives.

How do we recognize if an expedition is doing the right thing? Of course you can check if corporate sponsors are funding expenses and donation money is going directly to causes, and check to see the validity and rating of a nonprofit, but there really is more. At the end of the forum, I had an epiphany regarding the issue… maybe what it boils down to is authenticity: in the days of Google, one can really check to see if an cause-driven expedition is really true to that person’s heart and soul. Based upon the passion I saw and heard at this symposium, I was inspired to keep saving the world, one snowflake at a time!

Alison Gannett is a World Champion Extreme Freeskier, founder of The Save Our Snow Foundation and an award-winning global cooling consultant who has spent her life dedicated to solutions for climate change.

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Osprey Athletes, Outdoor Activities , , , , , ,

Childhood Memories: Growing Up In Small Outdoor Shops

June 25th, 2012

The upstairs of Alpenglow Adventure Sports - so many things to play with!

My spring has been filled with travel around the country to visit shops, stores and climbing gyms. It’s been a great way to get out and see all the different climbing communities across the country, but I am looking forward to six uninterrupted weeks at home.

On a recent trip to Maine, I was able to visit with the good people of Alpenglow Adventure Sports. They own a small outdoor store in northern Maine, which reminded me of the outdoor stores that I grew up with: quirky shops with every bit of space filled to the brim.

I grew up with Alpine West. It was a small outdoor store located in a corner spot of a long, skinny, brown building in downtown Davis, California. Bordering the train tracks, it was filled wall to wall with all sorts of outdoor goodies. From sleeping bags to climbing gear, ski boots to water filters. Not an inch of the store was empty. My dad is an avid outdoor enthusiast, and while his interests have changed over the years from skiing, to climbing, and now to kayaking, I associate the outdoor stores with childhood memories.

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Osprey Athletes, Outdoor Activities , , ,

Soaking Up The Last Of San Juan Summer Skiing

June 25th, 2012

The trusty Outback delivers us to the goods

It has been a tough spring here in the San Juan Mountains of southwest Colorado. Spring was a complete dud in terms of moisture and delivered little from the skies except numerous big dust storms. The dust made the already dwindling snowpack melt even faster leaving us with conditions that more resemble late July than early June. What can you do but make the best of a bad hand? This past weekend I loaded up the trusty Subaru Outback for a drive up to Clear Lake above Silverton. Numerous long couloirs lead to aprons that end at the lakes edge making for some of the most scenic runs in the regions.

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Osprey Athletes, Outdoor Activities , , , , ,

Kamloops Reminiscing: Getting Back To The Roots of Freeride

June 22nd, 2012

Stephen Matthews catching the last rays of the day.

I was invited along for a weekend of riding in the Kamloops by a small crew led by Seb Kemp, who was writing a story on the Loops for Dirt Magazine, and Reuben Krabbe, who was capturing the images for the article. I had not been to Kamloops in a long while, focusing my travels on other parts of BC, and more exotic locales in the previous few years. I feel strong ties to that arid part of the province though, having spent many weeks there in the early days of my freeride career, shooting for the New World Disorder movies and getting into the youthful trouble that seemed to follow our film shoots around in those days.

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Osprey Athletes, photos, The Cycling Buzz , , , , , , , ,

Rios Libres Petition Contest: Take Action + Be Entered To Win A New Osprey Pack

June 22nd, 2012

Last week we brought you a post with tons of information about Osprey partner Rios Libres, an organization that’s fighting hard against proposed damming on Patagonia’s pristine and incredibly powerful rivers. If you haven’t already gone ahead and signed the Rios Libres petition against HidroAysen’s proposal to dam the Baker and Pascua here, don’t feel bad, we’ve got another opportunity for you to take action, and it’s pretty awesome in and of itself.

Launching today, Thursday, June 21st — and running through Tuesday, July 3rd is the Rios Libres Petition Contest, in which you can help keep Patagonia Wild and win prizes at the same time! To TAKE ACTION, and be entered for a chance to win an Osprey Atmos or Aura backpack, all you have to do is go here to sign the petition, and then be sure to SHARE it on Facebook or Twitter.

Want more background info? Here’s the scoop on the proposed dam project:

Last year, Chilean officials gave the green light to the HidroAysén project, which would build five mega-dams on two of Patagonia’s wildest rivers. Now, one of the two corporations behind HidroAysén has suspended progress on the project indefinitely. Urge Chilean President Piñera to show environmental leadership at the upcoming Earth Summit by overturning the approval of HidroAysén and saving Patagonia from destruction.

Your willingness to sign the petition in solidarity with the 72% of Chileans who are against damming Patagonia could help save these wild rivers so TAKE ACTION now! And keep in mind, your participation could just win you your very own Osprey pack, as well!

PHOTO Via: Rios Libres

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Conservation, contest, Product , , ,

Kick Off Summer: Donate to Conservation Lands Foundation And Win An Osprey Pack

June 20th, 2012

Osprey is proud to support the Conservation Lands Foundation and we’re excited to get more people outside and exploring our National Conservation Lands this summer. Please join us in helping to protect these incredible places by becoming a sustaining donor of the Conservation Lands Foundation for just $10 per month. The Conservation Lands Foundation works to protect, restore and expand the National Conservation Lands. Pack for adventure with an Osprey daypack — yours when you become a monthly donor by July 4, 2012. Kick off summer. Donate today!

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causes, Conservation, Events , , , , ,

Julio Solis, a MoveShake Story

June 19th, 2012

The story of Julio Solis, a turtle poacher turned turtle conservationist in Puerto San Carlos, Baja California, Mexico is one that is bound to make you smile. It may also prompt you to change your unhealthy or unproductive ways, whatever they may be, as Solis did.

Julio Solis narrates his own incredibly moving and inspirational story in this MoveShake film, during which he eloquently speaks of the nature of change, and how he came to be the founder of a nonprofit dedicated to preserving the turtles and natural resources of Magdalena Bay as a result of a mere shift in perspective. Watch and be amazed; watch and be motivated to make change.

MoveShake is a five-part video series that is dedicated to telling the stories of individuals who are following their passion to create positive change in the world around them. Stay tuned for more incredible stories…

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causes, Conservation, Osprey Culture, video , , , , , ,

Friday Roundup: Finding Wildness This Weekend

June 15th, 2012

Osprey's Shannon Hahn rappels 150 feet down a slot canyon in Zion National Park during a product testing trip in June 2012. Photo: Chris Horton

There are some who can live without wild things and some who cannot. ― Aldo Leopold

Here’s to finding some wildness this weekend. Happy Friday from Osprey Packs!

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Friday Round-up, Osprey Culture, Outdoor Activities, Product, travel , , ,

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