This year Osprey Packs is turning 40. That’s 40 amazing years of innovative gear carrying equipment, epic adventures and life-changing journeys.
To celebrate #OspreyAt40, we’re giving away 40 Limited Edition 40th Anniversary Transporter 40 packs to 40 fans who share photos of their favorite adventures with an Osprey Pack.
Enter to win by uploading a photo of your favorite memory with Osprey Packs – we want to see your sunset hikes on local trails, summers backpacking through Europe, rides on your favorite singletrack and trips around the world!
Show us the Osprey Packs that have been part of your journeys and enter to win a Limited Edition 40th Anniversary Transporter 40 to take on your next adventure.
Here’s how to enter #OspreyAt40:
1. Choose a photo that shows you on your favorite Osprey Packs adventure: this can be a day hike, backpacking on the Inca Trail, biking through town, at the beaches in Phi Phi, finishing a great day at Smith Rock, skiing the backcountry – whatever “adventure” means to you.
3. Upload your photo directly to the Osprey Packs Facebook contest page OR upload to Instagram/Twitter and tag your Instagram/Twitter photo #OspreyAt40 and @OspreyPacks (Instagram/Twitter account must be public and tags must be in the photo caption/comments). You must enter your photo between January 27th – March 7th, 2014.
4. Beginning on January 27th, vote for your favorite photos on the Facebook contest page. During each 10 day period, the first 5 photos to get 40 votes will automatically win a limited edition pack, the remaining 5 winners in each 10 day period will be selected by a panel of judges. We’ll be announcing 10 winners on Day 10, Day 20, Day 30 and Day 40 of the photo contest, for a total of 40 winning photo submissions.
5. Make sure to “like” Osprey Packs on Facebook and/or tag #OspreyAt40 on your Instagram/Twitter photo submission (and follow us on Instagram/Twitter while you’re at it!) for your entry to be valid. These photos should be your own, one entry per person. We’re looking forward to seeing all of your submissions of #OspreyAt40!
Official rules & regulations: http://tinyurl.com/OPA40rules
Osprey Ambassador Chris Gallaway is seeking support through Kickstarter to make his a film, “The Long Start to the Journey” a reality. January 31st is the campaign deadline to support this compelling documentary about the Appalachian Trail and if the campaign does not meet its goal no funding will be collected and given to the movie.
In support of Chris’s Kickstarter campaign, we’re giving away an Exos 48 Superlight Backpack to the next donor to pledge $220. The Exos 48, our newest ultra-light technical backpack, is a masterful combination of ounce-shaving, durable materials and a feather-weight internal frame to keep you fast and comfortable on your next journey. Your pack will have a “The Long Start to the Journey” patch sewn on to commemorate your part in making this film possible. Note: We’ll need to get your unique sizing before fulfilling this reward and you must be a resident of the US to be eligible.
A question I have often heard since completing my 7-month thru-hike on the Appalachian Trail is how the experience changed me. That’s a difficult one for me to answer, and it’s probably better addressed by people who know me well and have observed me from the outside. The images above were taken at the beginning and end of my hike (the third, cold morning in February on Blood Mountain Georgia and the last day in September as I walked down from Katahdin). While I know that these two self-portraits encompass a host of experiences and some of the most significant changes of my life, it’s difficult for me to articulate what’s different between them.
I can begin with the obvious changes. I came away from the trail several pounds lighter and with bigger leg muscles than I’ve ever owned in my life. I felt more uneasy traveling in cars and moving at the pace of the modern world, and I’d developed a very strong distaste for the tone and content of television news. On the other hand, I had developed a very avid appetite for any and all foods that I could get my hands on, no matter how exotic or mundane the cuisine. I’d become much more sensitive to artificial odors like perfume and shampoo, sometimes finding them repellent; while simultaneously I was much more tolerant of the natural odor of human beings when they’d been without a shower for several days. For the first time I was engaged to a woman (Sunshine!) and would in fact be married to her a month after finishing the trail. I had also experienced the sudden death of my younger brother and was still living through the shock of that event, trying to figure out what it would mean to me.
When I set out on the trail in February of that year I felt that it would be a journey that would challenge me greatly and change me forever. Yet I held that “knowledge” lightly, fully aware that it was purely theoretical and that the challenges and changes I would face would surely surprise me and maybe overwhelm me. Beginning a thru-hike you have to make commitments that are not unlike those made on your wedding day, reaching as they do beyond your power to know. You commit to yourself that you will struggle through hardships that will wear you down and rub you raw, but you cannot know how deeply they will test you. You acknowledge that you will observe many beautiful things and meet many fine people along the way, and yet you really don’t know what kind of gifts these things will be to you.
I remember that early on in my hike when people asked if I was a thru-hiker I responded “Yes,” but that it was a statement of intent and not one of accomplishment. Now I have achieved it, and it surely ranks as one of the greatest, hardest journeys of my life. I’m glad that I got to experience this journey immediately before embarking on the much grander adventure of marriage. The butterflies I experienced on the drive down to Springer were much like those I felt as I stood before friends and family and waited on my bride to walk down the aisle. On both of those days I was at the threshold of a journey that stretched far beyond my vision, and yet I had a deep, abiding confidence that it would be good.
Sunshine and I feel a similar excitement and anxiousness now as we raise support to make a documentary film about the Appalachian Trail. It’s unclear if we will succeed in raising the support we hope for to make this film, but we know that the story will be told in the end, whatever it takes. We feel that that this is a good story, one worth telling, and we’re inviting people who believe in it to help us make the film. It will be another long, good journey to complete this film, and we’re thankful to have the support of many fellow travelers!
Note: We’ll need to get your sizing before sending you your bag and you must be a resident of the US to be eligible. In order to win this pack the person donating to the campaign will have to select the pack as their reward on Kickstarter. In order to win the pack, simply log in to Kickstarter and pledge your support to The Long Start to the Journey film at the $220 level; then select the “OSPREY EXOS 48 SUPERLIGHT BACKPACK” as the reward you would like to receive for your pledge.
If the campaign meets its funding goal by January 31st your pledge of support will go through and the pack will be shipped to you. If the campaign does not reach its funding goal, Kickstarter will collect none of the pledged support for the film and no rewards will be delivered. Many other prizes and rewards are available to those who would like to support the film at a lower level: everything from calendars to a copy of the finished film itself.
Ben White grew up in Massachusetts and spent his free time adventuring in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, where he fell in love with backcountry skiing and mountain biking. After moving to Salt Lake City, he has taken up both rock and ice climbing in addition to attending the University of Utah to study geology.
The weather looked good, the avalanche conditions looked good, the snow looked good — all in all it was a recipe for a good day in the mountains, so we decided that skiing Superior was going to be a great call. There were a few sets of tracks down Mt. Superior from the previous days, which was inspiring because we hadn’t been sure if there was enough snow to cover up all the rocks. The turns made in the days prior to our trip looked fluid enough to suggest that there was plenty of the white stuff.
A nice morning
Looking at the prize as the sun rises is nice
Riley and Jackson following the ridge
Riley on the ridge
Riley and Jackson are dots quickly after they dropped in
Justin and Greg nearing the summit
I’m on top
looking down the beast
Justin making his way down
Looking up at our tracks from the road
The night before our trip, I gathered a gang of three other guys — Riley, Jackson and Justin — who were in on the plan. We decided that an early start would be best, as it would warm up later in the day on the mountain and result in sticky snow. At 5:30 am, we started up the skin track to Telephone Pole Pass, the same way that skiing under the Supermoon in June started. The January moon was a day past full — we kept our headlamps off for the most part while the moonlight bathed the mountains in soft (but bright) light. We quickly made it up to the ridge and saw the sun rise.
After following the ridge a little ways and taking a slightly different (and more difficult) route than we’d originally intended, a cool guy named Greg caught up with us. At this point, Riley and Jackson decided that skiing instead of rock scrambling would be more enjoyable. Justin, Greg and I continued up.
Mt. Superior is included in 50 Classic Ski Descents of North America — a mountain blanketed in Utah’s trademark champagne powder, with 3000 continuous vertical feet of skiing that starts out with a nice chute emptying into a beautiful canvas to make huge and fast jet-fighter turns is pretty amazing.
With such easy access, it gets skied quite a bit and gets ogled by skiers across the street at Alta and Snowbird every day. Overall, I’d definitely say it’s a classic descent.
We summited shortly after Riley and Jackson split and our descent looked great. The snow was soft and hadn’t really started to melt, so we were able to enjoy great powder turns. By the time we’d made it back down, Riley and Jackson were waiting for us at the car and we all finished the day with a couple laps at Snowbird. Our trip couldn’t have been more straightforward and the day couldn’t have been better.
Its a new season at Valhalla Mountain Touring — with a new ACL, a new snowpack and problems that are new to me.
Every day of this backcountry life brings about new challenges to overcome and things to learn. Nothing comes easy in the backcountry, whether it’s earning your turns or learning how to thaw out frozen pipes deep in the mountains. Luckily we have a family business, where we get to battle the problems and shred the big lines together. It would be impossible to to measure how difficult this business would be without the family. With all of that in mind, the last three weeks have been full of hard work, elation and total contentment.
It’s an awesome life we get to live and share with our guests, who become our extended family. So far the new season snows have been deep and light, with a solid snowpack and good stability, letting us share in some 5-star ski days with everyone who has been here.
Let’s keep the good times rolling!
Evan Stevens, lead guide at Valhalla Mountain Touring, was born and raised in a suburb of New York City. After graduating from Middlebury College with a B.A. in Geography, Evan moved west to begin an avalanche forecasting career in Utah. After discovering Selkirk powder Evan left backcountry avalanche forecasting for the Utah Avalanche center and now guides full time with his IFMGA Full Mountain Guide certification, and membership with the ACMG and the AMGA.
What better way to kick off 2014 than with a few jitters, chattering teeth, and a full serving of adrenaline as you carefully choose where to swing your axe next??
That’s what will be happening in the little town of Ouray, Colorado, as people from all over the country travel to Ouray to participate in one of the largest ice festivals in the nation. This will be our 10th year attending and there are MANY reasons we keep coming back!
It will all kick off on Thursday night, January 9th, with presentations and delicious beers brewed in the heart of the San Juan Mountains.
As we roll into the weekend, all the action will be at the Ice Park from 8 AM until 3 PM. Here is where you will find our tent with an array of activities and overall awesomeness.
-Demo our packs- Whether you own an Osprey Pack or in the market for a climbing pack, come try out our Mutant or Variant packs designed for all your winter endeavors.
-Win a pack!: Do you “Shoot to the Moon”? We challenge you to reach for the stars as we will have a game with prizes such as shirts, hats, and even a pack! All proceeds will go to CAIC, a non-profit organization that reports avy conditions for the great state of Colorado.
-Majka Burhardt Poster Signing: That’s right folks! We have the lovely Majka signing posters at the Ouray Community Center on Friday! Stop by between 6-7:30 PM to meet the Ice Queen and receive a signed poster!
-Fit Specialist on Site: Our staff are the cream of the crop when it comes to fitting the pack of your dreams. Feel free to stop by and ask questions, geek out on our gear, or receive a life-changing high-five.
-20% off all Osprey Packs at Ouray Mountain Sports: Its a “Win-Win” sort of deal as you can demo first and receive a 20% off the pack of your dreams!
-Clinics With San Juan Mountain Guides: San Juan Mountain Guides is the premiere guide company of the San Juans. They work with top tier athletes from all over the world to bring you the highest quality of clinics and experiences. Maximize your experience at Ouray Ice Festival by signing up for their variety of courses, happening on both Friday and Saturday. Our own athletes, Ben Clark and Majka Burhardt will be teaching clinics as well! Check out the available clinics here.
Here’s a resolution worth keeping in 2014: learn how to float effortlessly through powder, catch air off rocks, and shred trees and steeps. Did we mention you can win an Osprey Kode 32 pack as well? This week, World Champion Freeskier and Osprey Ambassador Alison Gannett will be giving away an Osprey Snowsports Pack to one of the lucky skiers that register for her KEEN Rippin Chix Steeps and Powder Camp. Our Kode 32 is a dedicated, technical backcountry snowplay pack that was designed specifically for the backcountry and after testing it out for their Gear Guide, Backpacker Magazine said the Kode 32 is “perfect” for both backcountry skiing or snowboarding.
These no-frills, affordable camps are for real women skiers wanting expand their toolboxes and buildconfidence in steeps, air, powder, trees, roots and rocks. Steeps and Powder camps will be hosted at Crystal Mountain Washington Feb 8-9th 2014, Whitewater Britsh Columbia Feb 15-16th 2014, Silverton Mountain Feb 1-2nd 2014 and more. Camps are for telemark and alpine skiers. Intro steeps camps are for gals who can make 10 consecutive turns on a blue/black run, and the “regular” camps require ten turns on a groomed double black diamond run. All camps have multiple ability levels, with the upper levels hucking cliffs, straight lining, and ripping through trees, powder, moguls, pillows and crud with confidence and technique. Camps have a money back guarantee – most gals learn ten years of tips and tricks in just two short days. CLICK HERE -learn more, watch camp videos, or REGISTER!
Want to visualize what your skiing will look like after the camp? Watch Alison rip it up in the video below:
Curious about the Kode 32? Check out what Alison keeps in her pack:
The artist is a talented woman named Nirit Levav Packer, who collects bike parts from bike shops around Tel Aviv. Then, she solders bike parts that she collects from garages and bike shops all over Tel Aviv. According to The Telegraph article:
“The series, called HOW!WoW!, began by chance when Nirit examined some bicycle parts being thrown away at her son’s bike store, and instead of seeing them as rubbish she saw a potential to do something creative with them. Within a few months, she had left a successful career in wedding dress design for metal sculpture.”
Stretching the legs out, for some early season skiing, is a good way to get yourself in shape for bigger days later in the winter. JAZZERCISE also works well… but I prefer skiing even if the snow conditions are limited. Mt Baker is just the place to get the ball rolling. Let me know if I’m wrong, but I can’t think of a ski area in North America where you can park at the base, skin past the backcountry gates within 20 minutes, and have two world class mountains — Mt. Shuksan and Mt. Baker — in plain sight. The North Cascades offer unlimited terrain. It would take a lifetime in this zone, just to scratch the surface.
We are incredibly proud to have two Osprey Athletes who are among the youngest National Caliber mountain bike racers in the world: the Yackle Brothers. But what makes them outstanding is not just their abilities on the bike, but also their incredible work ethic and mentality toward the world. As young individuals who work hard on their sport, they also take a considerable amount of time to contribute to community service, and that’s something that we can all learn from (especially during the holiday season) and resolve to do more of. Yackle Brothers Team Director Kevin E. Yackle tells us a little bit more about what the boys have been working on lately:
“Over the Team’s race seasons we’ve accumulated a whole lot of swag that we wanted to find a good home for, so we had an idea to visit a kids hospital to brighten the lives of the kids and give these items away. In September, we contacted Angie McEvers, Child Life Director at Children’s Hospital of Renown Hospitals, Reno Nevada. We arranged a visit for November 13 to give a talk and visit child patients. Next, we contacted our Sponsors to inform them of our plans. Though we already had sufficient swag and promotional items from a few sponsors (FSA, Jamis, Yakima, Osprey) some donated additional items. We had two great visits! On November 13th, we raffled just a portion of the promotional items that were Sponsor provided, due to a unusually low patient population.
Mrs. McEvers was delighted to have our Team come provide support to the Kids and it went so well she invited us back for the Children’s Hospital Christmas Party on December 9th.
Well, yesterday we attended that event. It was another great experience for our Team and the Hospital. We were blessed to have the opportunity to be involved! We were joined by a few Athletes from the University of Nevada, Reno. A few hundred Hospital patrons, families and children enjoyed the 2 hour program Mrs. McEvers organized.
On Novermber 13th, we gave a talk about our Team’s history, showed a video about our Team and spoke about the road to achieve our accomplishments. We set an example, gave inspiration and motivation to kids to get involved in athletics/bicycling. We encouraged the kids to “shoot for the stars” and achieve their dreams. We toured the facility. We meet with Kids who were too sick to leave their rooms. We passed out swag gifts to give encouragement and held a raffle for a Osprey Pack, Light & Motion Bike Light, Ergon Grips and a Jamis Bike jersey.
On December 9th, we prepared a sign board with Team information, sponsor logo and event happenings. Displayed our Race Bikes and components in Feedback Sports stands. Set up a Sign Board. Played a Team video. Showed our Team portfolio. Laid out our 5 groups Raffle Prizes. The boys mingled the room talking to patient kids and families. They passed out small items of sponsor swag. Mrs. McEvers was a very gracious host. She introduced our Team to the audience and invited them to come see and talk with us at our table. She brought Jake and Nye on stage and introduced them and recognized their awesome accomplishment in sport. She invited them up 5 separate times to for them to describe the items in the raffle prize and them present it to the winner. Jake and Nye did a great job as they mention each item with its Brand name. Each of sponsors generous donation was well highlighted.
As expected, I was extremely proud of how the Boys professionally handled this opportunity to be at this Event helping out the Community, Hospital, Children, Team and their Sponsors.
We enjoyed our involvement with the Hospital and will be endeavoring to make this a reoccurring activity.Thanks to our Sponsors for your involvement and assistance with Yackle Brothers Racing efforts to make a difference in our Community!”
So, you’ve got the perfect pack for your next adventure in hand. But this very fact has you wondering what the crucial items you need to carry might be. Fret no more! Our Osprey athlete What’s in Your Pack? video series will give you the expert advice you need to be sure you’re dialed for that next adventure. In this month’s video, professional World Champion Extreme FreeSkier Alison Gannett unpacks her Kode 32 and shows us everything that’s inside it.
Check out the second installment of this exciting series – and never be afraid to ask What’s in Your Pack?! We’ll have a new video each month to help you see what our Osprey athletes are packing.