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Russia might be the last place you'd ever think to go surfing but surfers are nothing if not adventurous. In pursuit of the perfect wave, they are liable to go just about anywhere on the planet - from the frigid Arctic waters of Scandinavia to Pakistan's perilous Makran Coast. So when they show up on the remote volcanic coasts of Russia's Kamchatka Peninsula, is anyone really that surprised?
These guys from SURFER Magazine are particularly dedicated to their favorite sport, crashing through isolated Siberian forest in a military-grade off-road truck to find unexplored shores. On the way they find enough hot springs, friendly locals, pristine rivers and wild forest to satisfy anybody's adventure travel cravings, even if sweet shallow barrels don't get you stoked.
You know the drill. Mid-sized city revives a long-dormant warehouse district with art galleries, a baseball park, hipster bars, food trucks, even a Spaghetti Warehouse. Locals love it, then brace for a tourism boom that doesn't really come.
But Tulsa's reviving Brady District is different. It has Woody Guthrie.
In truth, this city in the Oklahoma hills where I grew up hasn't offered much outside appeal since the oil wells dried up or Route 66 became a toll road. And for decades, the Brady, across the tracks from downtown, was the quietest, darkest place in a town better known for its TV evangelist Oral Roberts. In fact, the Brady might have been left for good if not for a couple classic music venues, including Cain's Ballroom, where Bob Wills put swing into country music in the '30s.
Now the once-abandoned red-brick townhouses are home to glass-blowing schools, violin shops, falafel stands, cafes, outdoor films and yoga classes, and even the Hanson brothers' studio 3CG. Nora Guthrie, the frizzy haired daughter of the legendary folk hero, calls this area the perfect place for the new Woody Guthrie Center. "It's like SoHo in 1969 to 1971," she says of her former New York neighborhood. "There's this budding creativity, not caring about a specific idea, just a notion to do something."
In other words, Woody would approve.
The company behind the project, Mobilona, recently announced their vision for the complex, which includes a hotel, private apartments, a 24-hour shopping mall and a marina. All of this would be built on a Dubai-style, man-made island giving guests sea views no matter which way their room faces. A stay in the 2,000-suite hotel – which looks like something out of a sci-fi movie – would cost between 300 and 1500 euros per night.
There were some concerns about the weather conditions heading to the summit, as the forecasts had called for high winds. Bad weather could have scrubbed Miura's summit attempt, but fortunately the predicted shift didn't come. As a result, it was a good day for climbing and although it was cold on the summit, the Japanese alpinist and his son Gota managed to reach the top in a safe and timely fashion. They spent roughly a half-hour on the summit celebrating their accomplishment and calling home to their support team via satellite phone before heading back down.
We told you about Miura's quest to climb Everest a few weeks back, noting at the time that he was vying for the title of the oldest to achieve that feat with 81-year-old Min Bahadur Sherchan of Nepal. Sherchan has yet to begin his climb as a stomach ailment has kept him in Base Camp in recent days. He says that he is feeling stronger now and hopes to make a summit bid next week. If he is successful, he'll wrest the title of oldest Everest climber away from his Japanese rival. In 2008, at the age of 76, Sherchan topped out one day ahead of Miura, nabbing the record that has stood for the past five years.
Sherchan will have to have a little luck go his way, however, as the weather forecasts indicate the current summit window will close in the next few days. It is unclear whether or not another window will open before the end of the month, which traditionally sees a shifting of the jet stream that signals the arrival of the seasonal monsoons. When that happens, no one will be able to climb Everest until the fall at the earliest.
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Released this week by the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), the cruise industry organization that includes cruise lines, industry suppliers and travel agencies, the Cruise Industry Passenger Bill Of Rights details what should happen when things go wrong on a cruise ship. Unlike the airline version though, the cruise passenger bill of rights is more of an explanation of what cruise lines normally and customarily have been doing, as opposed to a set of laws for which fines can be levied against a cruise line that breaks them.
Still, there is value to cruise travelers in what the bill holds, if for no other reason than to educate buyers about what to expect. Experts agree.
"CLIA's Passenger Bill of Rights is a very good policy for passengers and the cruise industry as it crystallizes rights and responsibilities in a consistent manner across all member cruise lines," cruise expert Stewart Chiron, CEO of CruiseGuy told Gadling.
But an initiative by the Prague public transport system intends to change the way people feel about getting from here to there by introducing singles-only "love trains," Spiegel Online is reporting. A spokesman for Ropid, the city's public transport authority, told the news outlet the initiative is part of a long-term campaign that aims to bring to light activities you can do while riding public transport that you cannot do inside your car (like reading or playing games on your cellphone ... or in this case, getting to know a complete stranger). Ropid plans to work with dating agencies to help facilitate the program, which will only operate on nights and weekends - cause as GOOD points out, you don't want to risk running into Mr. Right before you've had your morning coffee.
"We are pleased to celebrate United's long history at our Newark hub - a premier global gateway and a powerful economic engine," said Jeff Smisek, United's chairman, president and chief executive officer, in a press release. "We continue to make investments in our terminal facilities, our services and our people to ensure United's Terminal C remains a great place for our customers and co-workers."
Yesterday, travelers arriving and departing at Newark Liberty joined United employees in an anniversary celebration where customers had opportunities to earn prizes, travel discounts and bonus MileagePlus miles. The airline also had a temporary exhibit all about how air travel has evolved since 1988.
If you are the kind of traveler who lives for digging through flea markets and wandering through souks, you might want to travel over to ProjectBly.com, a new lifestyle website featuring a rotation of world street market collections. In addition to shopping for carefully curated home goods and textiles, you can also check out street photography, food, fashion and members' profiles.
Bly highlights a new city and one-of-a-kind market goods every two months, working with local photojournalists to capture the style and spirit of each place. The website works with local vendors and artisans directly to get a fair price on goods, and gives 5 percent of proceeds to local charities. The first featured city is Mumbai, India, with La Paz, Bolivia, debuting in early June. Other cities planned for the first year include Kumasi, Ghana; Bukhara, Uzbekistan; Malacca, Malaysia; and Berlin, Germany.
Bly is named after Nellie Bly, a pioneering female journalist who traveled around the world in 72 days in 1889 with just two day's notice and one small bag (check out a nifty drawing of Nellie Bly's packing list, which included a flask and a jar of cold cream). The founder of Bly, Rena Thiagarajan, was born in the former Indian city of Madras (now Chennai) and now lives in San Francisco, and has traveled the world in search of unique design finds and street culture.
Get hunting at ProjectBly.com and check out the slideshow of street photography featured on the site.
Located in California's scenic Sierra Nevada range, Mammoth Mountain is a year-round outdoor playground for those who like to get away from it all. In the winter it offers some of the premiere skiing in all of North America and in the summer the bike park opens for a completely different type of fun. The park offers more than 80 miles of trail that includes cross-country, single-track routes with breathtaking views and adrenaline-inducing downhill courses for the more adventurous amongst us.
Mammoth Mountain's trails offer gentle riding for beginners and more technical and leg-straining options for the experienced mountain biker. When the park opens on Saturday at least 12 of its trails will be ready for action. If you're already familiar with what the park has to offer, the list of trails that will be open include: Downtown, UpTown, Big Ring, Paper Route, Juniper, Timber Ridge, Shotgun, Lower Pipeline, Lower Bullet Lakes Trail and Pioneer Practice Loop.
To celebrate the opening of the park for the summer, Mammoth is also offering an outstanding deal for this weekend. Just $69 will get you both lodging and a bike pass good for unlimited riding. You'll have a hard time getting on this course for less cash than that anytime soon. What a great way to kick off the summer!