A friend who lives in Costa Rica left a few weeks ago for a visit to Alaska. We did not learn until after he was already there what it was he planned to do there during the deepest depth of winter. We knew he was serious about endurance racing. We also believed that we knew something about expedition races, both in terms of adventure and endurance. A post on the New Yorker‘s website, about the results of this year’s Iditarod, reminded us to search on the race our friend is in, to learn more about its details, and now our minds have been bent:
WHAT THIS RACE IS ALL ABOUT
The Iditarod Trail Invitational is the world’s longest winter ultra marathon by mountain bike, foot and ski and follows the historic Iditarod Trail from Knik, Alaska over the Alaska Range to McGrath and to Nome in late February every year one week before the Iditarod Sled Dog Race. The short race 350 miles finishes in the interior village of McGrath on the Kuskokwim River and the 1000 mile race finishes in Nome. Racers have to finish the 350 mile race in a previous year before they can enter the 1000 mile race.
We invite 50 racers to take part in this unique challenge every year.
To qualify for the race go to our sub page “qualifiers” or “winter training camps” to find out more. Read more…
Where do you go, if Raxa Collective is both your work and your pleasure, when you want to get away from your normal day to day scenery–which by all means is awesome? Is there such a word as awesomer? Awesomest? Four Raxa Collective contributors have agreed to meet in Yosemite in late May to determine the awesomeness. They will hopefully share their findings in these pages at that time. For now, vimeo just makes us all wish we were in Yosemite now.
Some music inspires, and a smaller subset inspires over and over and over again. Thanks to Aeon for this article about, possibly, why:
What is music? There’s no end to the parade of philosophers who have wondered about this, but most of us feel confident saying: ‘I know it when I hear it.’ Still, judgments of musicality are notoriously malleable. That new club tune, obnoxious at first, might become toe-tappingly likeable after a few hearings. Put the most music-apathetic individual in a household where someone is rehearsing for a contemporary music recital and they will leave whistling Ligeti. The simple act of repetition can serve as a quasi-magical agent of musicalisation. Instead of asking: ‘What is music?’ we might have an easier time asking: ‘What do we hear as music?’ And a remarkably large part of the answer appears to be: ‘I know it when I hear it again.’ Read more…
Like birds, bees are a common thread on these pages, for both their innate beauty, and their importance to life on earth. Although much of the honey on the market in the world today comes from cultivated hives, the history of gathering wild honey goes back millennium.
For generations the Gurung tribespeople of central Nepal have assembled twice a year around cliffs filled with colonies of the world’s largest honeybee, Apis laboriosa. This dangerous Himalayan honey-harvest was recently documented by U.K.-based travel photographer Andrew Newey, who spent two weeks capturing this dying tradition, which is under the threat of commercialization.
“For hundreds of years, the skills required to perform this dangerous task have been passed down through the generations” writes Newey, “but now both the bees and traditional honey hunters are in short supply.” Read more…
The Coppersmith Barbet, Megalaima haemacephala, is a green bird with a crimson-colored forehead and breast, along with a yellow eye-ring and throat patch. It has a very distinct call, which has been likened to the sound made when a coppersmith strikes metal with his hammer. Read more…