Adventure Quickies: Tour de France Finale, Hoverboard Failures, and Much More

As usual, there were far too many stories to share this week and just not enough time or space to cram them all in. In an effort to make up for that, each Friday I post a series of “adventure quickies” with highlights of the things we missed, including stories of adventure, travel deals, gear reviews, and much, much more. Here’s a sampling of some of the things we didn’t get to over the past few days.

  • The Tour de France Ends This Weekend: The biggest cycling event in the world comes to a conclusion this weekend in Paris and heading into the weekend the fabled Yellow Jersey of the Tour de France is still up for grabs. Can Julian Alaphilippe –– the unlikeliest of race leaders –– hang on to achieve immortality or will one of the other GC contenders step up in the Alps to take home the win? We’re all about to find out.
  • French Inventor Fails English Channel Crossing on a Hoverboard: Earlier in the week I shared the story of French inventor Franky Zapata, who was about to attempt a crossing of the English Channel aboard a hoverboard of his own creation. As it turns out, that didn’t end very well for him.
  • Kayaker Attempting Circumnavigation of Lake Titicaca: A Brazilian paddler by the name of Alvaro Walendowsky is attempting to become the first person to circumnavigate Lake Titicaca in a kayak. He set out on that adventure earlier in the week, moving counterclockwise around the world’s highest navigable lake. You can follow along with his adventure from his Facebook page, linked to above. If successful, he’ll have paddled more than 1100 km (684 miles).
  • Nine-Year Old Attacked by Bison in Yellowstone: Every year there are a handful of stories about visitors to various national parks in the U.S. who have violent encounters with the wildlife there, usually because they stray to close to the animals. That happened once again this week when a nine-year old girl was stuck by a bison in Yellowstone. The entire incident was caught on video, which you can check out at GearJunkie. Warning though, it isn’t easy to watch.
  • ENO Celebrates 20 Years of Making Hammocks: Eagles Nest Outfitters (aka ENO) has been making hammocks for use in camping, backpacking, and the outdoors for two decades now, and to celebrate that milestone the company is releasing a 20th anniversary, limited edition version of its DoubleNest. As you would expect, the hammock is lightweight, comfortable, and easy to set up.
  • Get a 10% Discount on Inca Trail Hikes: Hiking the Inca Trail is a must-do on just about any adventure traveler’s bucket list and if you’re thinking about making the trek in 2020, Adventures Within Reach is hoping to make the trail a bit more accessible. The company is currently offering a 10% discount on all Inca Trail bookings for next year. Find out more here.
  • REI Launches Online Outdoor Community: Outdoor gear retailer REI continues to find new ways to connect with customers and help them connect with each other too. This week, the company launched REI Conversations, an online community that gives us the chance to share our passions for the outdoors with others, discussing our favorite activities, sharing local meet-ups and events, and connecting with gear experts to ask questions too.
  • Yamaha Pledges Up to $500,000 to Protect Public Lands: Yamaha Motor Corp has announced that it will donate up to $500,000 to organizations and groups that are actively working to protect public lands. The funds will be distributed through the company’s Yamaha Outdoor Access Initiative (OAI) and interested parties are encourage to apply for some of the cash online.
  • Take a Cycling Vacation on an eBike: Cycling tours have been popular for a number of years now, but while many people would love to explore a destination from the seat of a bike, they’re not sure they can keep up with the rest of the group. Thankfully, ebikes are being used to help level the playing field and to that end, adventure travel company Saddle Skedaddle has launched a line of ebike itineraries. Options include mountain biking in the Dolomites, the Sierra Nevada, and more.

That’s all for this week. More adventure quickies next Friday. Thanks for reading!

Kraig Becker