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    K6: Travel, Weather and Acclimatizing

    K6_after_the_storm I received this voicemail late Thursday night from Steve House. The call came via sat phone from basecamp in Pakistan where Steve, Vince Anderson and Marko Prezelj are in the first stages of attempting to climb K6. In this first update, you can listen to Steve talk about traveling in Pakistan, the weather situation so far and their plans to start acclimatizing at altitude:

    Listen to Steve House K6 Update 1 (mp3)

    Steve gave us a glimpse into his training for this climb back in June and now he’s there for the real deal. These guys are some of the best mountaineers in the world but this is still no joke. Let’s send some positive vibes across the globe to Steve, Vince and Marko for a safe and successful summit.

    [K6, Masherbrum Mountains, Pakistan. Photo: Steve House]

    Hole in the Ground Gets Some Love

    This just in from some of the folks in our Reno Distribution Center. These people like to ride, which is why they pitch in every year to make sure one of their favorite trails stays in good shape.

    On Tuesday August 8/7, eight Patagonia employees from Reno worked on the multi-use Trail_maintenance Hole-in-the-Ground trail near Donner Summit.

    The Hole-in-the-Ground trail is a gem of Northern California mountain biking.  As such, it receives substantial traffic. Patagonia "adopted" one segment of the trail several years ago and dedicates an annual maintenance day to trail upkeep. There are signs marking the adopted segment. The trail is showing effects of this year's long biking season - our section was dry with many loose rocks.

    [A corner gets "brake-bump proofed" by the Patagonia crew. Photo: Mark Blume]

    Continue reading "Hole in the Ground Gets Some Love" »

    From Oceans to the Arctic Refuge

    Cfood4thought1The time has come for Patagonia to shift its environmental activism focus from Oceans as Wilderness to the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. The goal of our new campaign is to help secure permanent protection for the Coastal Plain of the Arctic Refuge through designation as Wilderness.

    To commemorate the Oceans as Wilderness campaign, we enjoyed a special Seafood for Thought lunch in Ventura last week. The menu was created by our very own Micah Knox: panko crusted diver scallops with a micro green salad tossed in wasabi vinaigrette served with roasted garlic ginger burre blanc. For dessert, Ben & Jerry's kindly donated three flavors of their delicious ice cream. I chose Phish Food...

    Download the recipe for Panko Crusted Diver Scallops (PDF)

    [Choose your scallops wisely. Photo: Free]

    Continue reading "From Oceans to the Arctic Refuge" »

    Our Deepest Condolences

    PeteaIt is with great sadness that we learned recently of the death of a true friend of the climbing community. Pete Absolon of the National Outdoor Leadership School passed away this weekend in a climbing accident in the Wind River Range of Wyoming.

    It's hard to find the right words at time like this.  We wish for our friends in the NOLS community, and more importantly for Pete's family, to know that our thoughts are with you in this time of deep sadness. 

    Please keep reading for some words of fond remembrance from a friend within the NOLS community . . .

    Continue reading "Our Deepest Condolences" »

    The Dirtbag Award, Part Deux

    Simon_1b_4 On June 15th, we announced the winners of this year's two Dirtbag Grants. One went to Rachel Babkirk and Lucia Robinson, for their "Down for the Down and Out" trip to climb, camp and collect used gear to distribute to the homeless.

    The second award went to Australian Simon Clissold, "an overqualified dirtbag" and slow-living activist who plans to hitchhike (and/or go by bus) from his organic-olive farm in Spain to the "Tian Shan mountains (Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan), where I will base myself for the winter and explore the epic peaks of this wild range using only my split snowboard."

    We wanted to reproduce here Simon's entire application – for its wit, force of argument (especially against our own injunction to "do more with less") and exemplary dirtbag spirit.

    We hope to hear from all the winners during their travels and we'll post their reports here when we do.

    Simon_2_2 Simon_3_2 Simon_4_2

    Bouldering Excursion to Redcliff

    by Lynn Hill

    Jay_ready_tp_spring_2 Despite intermittent rain, the bouldering excursion to Redcliff was fun and well worth the trip. This collection of boulders is located about twenty-minutes west of Vail in a fairy-tale like setting amongst pine and aspen trees.

    I went with my friend, Jay Droeger, and his Hungarian friend, Lorent. About ten years ago, Jay discovered this area with his friend and guidebook writer, Philip Beningfield. While on their way to climb in Rifle, they happened to stop for lunch in the town of Minturn. One of the locals asked them what they were doing in the area and when they said they were rock climbers, the local told them that he had seen someone climbing on some boulders just behind the town of Redcliff.

    [Jay gets ready to spring for a hold. Photo: Lynn Hill]

    Continue reading "Bouldering Excursion to Redcliff" »

    Unsustainably Organic

    I made a big mistake. It involves garlic.Garlic_3

    Buying organic is good, right? I tend to think so, especially when my guilt-free organic garlic is now only $0.25 more expensive than its non-certified shelf-mates over at the local eco-chic shop n' strut. I'm a sucker for getting my values at a bargain, so I took a glance at the price, picked up a couple of fresh heads, and was on my way.

    But my stinking rose has a dark side, one I didn't take the time to notice 'til I got home . . .

    [Behold the unwitting, guileless garlic. So innocent. So fragrant. So well-travelled.  Photo: localcrew]

    Continue reading "Unsustainably Organic" »

    Palo Alto Grand Opening Grant Winner

    P_alto_grant07 We recently told you about the opening of our new Palo Alto store and how they were having an online vote to see which local enviro group would receive a $5,000 grant to commemorate the opening. Well, the votes are in, all 30,000+ of them, and we have a winner: Ventana Wildlife Society.

    "Every environmental organization works hard to raise money. Unsolicited donations like this are few and far between," said Kelly Sorenson, Executive Director, Ventana Wildlife Society. "Patagonia’s contribution will help us continue the important environmental work we have been doing for 30 years."

    [Store manager Jennifer Drew gives the Ventana Wildlife Society their grant. Photo: Jeff Johnson]

    Continue reading "Palo Alto Grand Opening Grant Winner" »

    Seen in the Parking Lot


    [Photo: Free]

    Beyond and Back: Your Backyard

    by Jeff Johnson

    JJ_backyard_1Sometimes you forget about your own backyard.

    While passing through Ventura the other day I had heard about a building south swell. So I hooked up with Patagonia Surf ambassadors Mary Osborne and Chris Malloy and headed south. We ended up posting up all afternoon at a spot north of Malibu. The crowd was fairly thick but the waves were consistent and the conditions were absolutely beautiful.

    I've been all over the world chasing waves in remote settings, looking for those rare moments when it all comes together. And there I was at a well-known surf spot just minutes from one of the most densely populated sprawls on earth. I stood there in the sand looking at perfect, overhead rights, peeling off a barnacled rock through a field of colorful kelp -- glassy yet textured by a warm, off-shore breeze, the light getting better every minute as the sun dipped down over the dry headland to the west. I paddled out for a few waves then set up shop on the beach.

    [Mary Osborne enjoys perfection close to home. Photo: Jeff Johnson]

    Continue reading "Beyond and Back: Your Backyard" »

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