365 days is a lot of time to seek out stories on adventure, gear, and everything in between. Here’s a look back at our deep dives on everything from the eroding of a beach town’s social structure, the making of a low-budget action movie, and the plight facing wildfire fighters in the American West. Pour a cup of coffee and get comfy for a long read.
Sentence(s) of the Year
The physics of rodeo
“This is what it is: a wild tango-meets-waltz-meets-mosh between the animal, leading, and the rider, following, a touch rocking and wildly tossed, if he does well. If he doesn’t do well, he is whipsawed and whiplashed and finally just whipped.”
Because a Good One is Worth 2,000 Words
Sunset in Montauk
By J. Travis Smith: Talking to six locals — a policeman, a teacher, a surfer, a scenester, a fisherman and a retiree — about why and how the classic beach town is changing.
The Real Toll of the West’s Battle with Fire
By Chris Wright: This summer, wildfire fighters saved the American west — and paid the price.
How a Near-Death Experience Changed Outdoor Gear Forever
By J. Travis Smith: The story (sponsored by Eddie Bauer, and still an incredible work of writing) of how the leading outdoor outfitter took a detour away from the mountain, only to return decades later with a mission to change the industry.
Can a Quarter-Million-Dollar Action Movie Disrupt Hollywood?
By J. Travis Smith: Gaelan Connell celebrated his 25th birthday on the set of Blood, Sand and Gold, an action/adventure film he financed almost entirely with his life savings.
Is Laughter the Best Medicine?
By J. Travis Smith: Laughter yoga, first popularized by Dr. Madan Kataria, has become an international movement. But does the science support the practice?
24 Hours at the World’s Biggest Outdoor Rodeo
By Chris Wright: The modern West is alive and potent at the world’s largest outdoor rodeo spectacle in Cheyenne, Wyoming.
The Kings of Two Wheels
By Matt Ankeny: In April, there was a rare overlapping of two-wheeled motorsports: both the MotoGP and the AMA Supercross came to Texas. We went to both to see the fastest men on two wheels battle it out on the track and in the dirt.
Eclipse Chasing in the Faroe Islands
By Eric Adams: Chasing a total solar eclipse in the Faroe Islands, the only thing standing in the way are the clouds.
Calling Out the Contemporary Menu
By Matt Ankeny: This is a manifesto for simple menus: let your food be inspired and your verbosity be chopped.
Inside New York City’s Plan to Fight Blizzards
By J. Travis Smith: How does the densest, most populous city in America clear over 6,500 miles of streets when a blizzard strikes?