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Eleven leatherback sea turtles race from Canada to nesting beaches on the sun-soaked shores of the Caribbean. Brian Skerry talks about using natural moonlight and a long exposure to create this ghostly image of a vanishing species. Ancient MarinerThe biggest, deepest-diving, widest-ranging of all turtles, the leatherback has endured for 100 million years. One late summer day in 1961 a biologist named Sherman Bleakney got a telephone call about a strange sea creature that fishermen had just unloaded on a wharf in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Marine ecologist Enric Sala (foreground) examines an enormous lobe coral on Kingman Reef in the South Pacific’s remote Line Islands. Coral reefs are some of the world’s most biologically diverse ecosystems, often called the "rain forests of the sea." Though they spread over less than one percent of the seafloor coral reefs support a staggering one-fourth of all marine species.
These yellow "stalks" of broccoli coral are just one of a surprising array of coral shapes. The mushroom coral uses this amazing Technicolor mouth to feast on something no other coral is known to favor—adult jellyfish. Coral reefs are complex structures built by tiny organisms called coral polyps, which are kin to jellyfish and sea anemones. Coral reefs are found throughout the world’s tropical oceans, often in relatively shallow waters where algae use photosynthesis to covert the sun’s energy into vital nutrients. Help protect the last healthy, undisturbed places in the ocean so we can learn how to help healthy reefs thrive, help unhealthy reefs recover, and better preserve the ocean. Explore the world's oceans, from their prehistoric beginnings to modern-day efforts to preserve their natural wonder. Immerse yourself in the wonders of the deep through colorful maps, photos, and satellite images. The National Geographic Society’s freshwater initiative is a multi-year global effort to inspire and empower individuals and communities to conserve freshwater and preserve the extraordinary diversity of life that rivers, lakes, and wetlands sustain. Kelty Cosmic Down 20A hundred bucks actually buys you a heck of a lot more than you might expect: The Kelty Cosmic Down 20 has a few frills tucked into its no-frills price. MontBell’s Ultralight Super Spiral Down Hugger (15 Degrees) This is the most comfortable sleeping bag you’ll ever use.
Mountain Hardwear’s Ultralamina 32 Mountain Hardwear’s Thermic Micro is one of the more down-like synthetic insulations you’ll find, both compressing and lofting better than most manmade fibers.
The North Face’s Verto It isn’t just that The North Face’s Verto jacket is a scant 3.2 ounces. First Ascent BC-200First Ascent from Eddie Bauer has been riding a wave of publicity and good will thanks to a mountaineering team that includes all-stars such as Ed Viesturs and Peter Whittaker.
Marmot WhisperliteWhen there’s rain in the forecast and you’re heading for a hike, the last thing you want to shove into your pack is a heavy, old-school shell. Rab’s Boreas Pull-On Rab’s Boreas Pull-On defies definition, so we’ll just call it the perfect shirt. The North Face Double-Track For years, The North Face built extra-large heapings of stability and sturdiness into its running. Scarpa’s Gecko Guide Scarpa’s Gecko Guide might be the first truly modern approach shoe, light enough for feet accustomed to trail runners, but still sticky enough to scramble the crag.
Garmin Montana 650tThe Garmin Montana 650t does precisely what GPS lovers have been hungering for—displaying both topo maps as well as turn-by-turn driving directions.
Coleman’s PerfectFlow InstaStart Grill Stove Have you looked at the grills in most public campgrounds lately?
Jet Boil Sol Ti PremiumThere have been imitators, but no one has come close to the whole cooking package that is Jetboil, and with the titanium Sol Ti Premium version.
GSI Outdoors Pinnacle Camper There’s something just plain cool about modern cooksets such as the GSI Outdoors Pinnacle Camper. Gregory Z 30 Many so-called daypacks are little more than book bags, but Gregory’s Z 30 is day-plus pack with a can-do attitude.
Deuter ACT Lite 50 10 When people speak of the joy of backpacking, rarely are they talking about shouldering a 40-pound pack, but Deuter’s ACT Lite 50 10 has the odd quality of seeming to disappear, even when fully loaded. Black Diamond Innova 60Imagine a multiday backpack that rides perfectly whether you scramble up boulders, leap across a gap, or tiptoe over a creek on a log—that’s Black Diamond’s Innova 60, which features a hip belt that rotates and pivots around a rigid plastic fitting.
Arc’teryx Cierzo 25A summit pack like the Arc’teryx Cierzo 25 might at first seem like an indulgence. The North Face Docking Station Here’s one way to guarantee happy campers: Give them plenty of room. MSR Carbon Reflex 2 It’s impossible to look at the MSR Carbon Reflex 2 and not think about lingerie.

As if bathed in moonlight, a giant spider crab (Macrocheira kaemferi) is illuminated by a diver's lamp in Japan's Izu Oceanic Park. Nasa stran za boljso uporabnisko izkusnjo uporablja piskotke.Zelim, da moj brskalnik sprejme piskotke v ta namen.Preberi vecZ veseljem jih sprejmem? This coral is 500 years old, but the species was unknown to science before Sala’s discovery. The color comes from algae, which lends reefs the tropical colors most associate with these lush landscapes.
Humans have nicknamed corals after their resemblances to tree branches, stacked dinner plates, mushrooms, brains, and other unlikely items. Some are plankton eaters, others feed on corals, and “grazers” devour ocean vegetation like algae. Today’s human impacts aren’t always as obvious—but they are far more serious.Pollution and overfishing can harm reef ecosystems locally. Today all reefs are an important part of the planet that many species depend on—including some 500 million humans. Australia’s incomparable Great Barrier Reef, pictured here, traces a graceful 1,250-mile-long (2,000-kilometer-long) arc off the nation’s northeast coast. Robert Ballard, as he reveals the details behind this story of stealth, subs and superpowers. There’s a full-length tube of down behind the zipper to guard against drafts, an insulated hood with elastic to cinch it tight, and a down collar.
It’s a stretch-woven material, aka soft shell, that’s thinner than most base layers, but is constructed like a pullover hoodie. But the Double-Track is a straight-down-the-middle trail runner, not too heavy, not too stiff. Approach shoes have traditionally been uber-sturdy—the better to support a heavy pack of climbing gear—but with nearly everyone’s load getting lighter these days, it makes sense for a lighter model. It’s not an ankle-high shoe masquerading as a boot, nor an urban high-top with aspirations to the trail.
On its own, the PN-60w is terrific little color handheld GPS, but mated with the SPOT Satellite Communicator, it’s nothing short of revolutionary. The Cross-Flo DTS suspension uses crossed aluminum stays to stabilize loads north of 30 pounds and a mesh trapeze to help air circulate behind your back. The secret is the suspension, called Aircontact, which features two thickly padded, curved ridges that rest gently against either side of your back. This “ergoACTIV” tech allows the pack to float as you twist and turn, rather than clinging desperately to your shoulders as some packs do.
But once you’ve dropped your heavy backpack in base camp and donned an ultralight carryall for peak bagging or day tours, you’ll soon find it a necessity.
The North Face calls its Docking Station "the Swiss Army knife of tents," but it’s more like a modular house. Protected from some predators by its hard exoskeleton, the creature—which can grow to ten feet (three meters) wide—can also blend in with the ocean floor.
Sprawled on its back amid a curious crowd was an immense black sea turtle tipping the scales at 900 pounds, with a soft, rubbery carapace, winglike front flippers, and a massive, conical head like an artillery shell. Such finds aren’t shocking at Kingman, which is one of the world’s most pristine reef ecosystems. Reef species like this pygmy sea horse adapt to their colorful environment by donning their own vivid hues. But all reefs are formed by millions of tiny coral polyps—and the countless shells of their deceased predecessors. Larger predators, like snappers and sharks, always stand at the ready to feast on smaller fish.When humans overharvest reef fish species, the impact can be significant.
Their limestone skeletons connect with one another in massive numbers to create first coral colonies, then larger reefs—Earth’s largest biological structures.
Climate change is causing trouble for reefs around the world, like coral bleaching episodes and increasingly acidic waters. Reefs provide food for millions of people, protect coastlines from erosion, yield new medicines, and even stoke the engines of commerce.
This largest of all coral habitats—it covers an area larger than Poland—is actually made up of some 2,800 separate reefs. Yes, but MontBell’s Ultralight Super Spiral Down Hugger 15 is constructed with a tricky little sewing sleight of hand.
It’s that the Verto is fully featured, with an elastic hood, storm flap behind the zipper, and hip length that keeps wind blasts off your lower back—plus it doesn’t feel clammy against the skin.

It’s comfy as comfy gets, stretching whichever way you move whether you’re reaching to place climbing protection or to shoulder a pack. It’s a real, supportive, durable, tough-duty piece of beautifully manufactured footwear that will carry you adeptly on a casual day hike or a weeklong trek with a sizable pack. The SPOT enables you to send 40-character text messages from anywhere you can get a sat signal. The lithium-ion battery runs a respectable 16 hours, and you can pop in three AA batteries for an additional 22 hours. Better to bring your own clean, two-burner flamethrower in the form of Coleman’s PerfectFlow InstaStart Grill Stove. Its three-liter pot, two-liter pot, and nine-inch frying pan are coated with three-layer Teflon. The 30-liter top loader easily handles gear for a day’s summit push or, if you’re a minimalist, a summer overnight. Not only does the padding of this top loader nestle softly against you, there’s a large channel in the middle of it to funnel body heat and keep you cooler. The Cierzo carries a hearty 25 liters but weighs just 15 ounces and stuffs into its own top pocket to the size of a Nalgene bottle.
By itself, the Docking Station is the size of a small office (97 square feet of floor space), and you can add two two-person additions and one four-person addition for an extra 100 square feet.
At 5.5 pounds, it’s in the middle of the range for a typical two-person, three-season backpacking tent.
Under deeper cover, it can disappear beneath the sponges and other marine life it uses to adorn its shell.
The site shows scientists how much has been lost at reefs found closer to human habitation.
The loss of “grazers,” for example, can cause algae populations to explode and spur bacteria growth that compromises coral health.
The threads are cut at a 45-degree angle, the fibers are coiled, and the stitches are elastic—all of which adds up to a bag that stretches and moves with you no matter how much you toss and turn.
The Ultralamina has a mummy cut tempered by a vaulted footbox, so there’s room for your tootsies to move around. After testing at least a dozen of First Ascent products over the last couple years, including the 11-ounce BC-200 three-layer shell, it’s clear the brand has done its homework and builds “guide tough” gear. At eight ounces, you won’t find a much lighter Gore-Tex shell, nor, with the Paclite fabric, one that’s more durably waterproof. There’s mild pronation control (a smidge of extra medial support), but otherwise the shoe molds to your foot and provides excellent trail feel.
The Vibram outsole sports deep, aggressive lugs, and the Gore-Tex liner and sealed bellows tongue keep out wet and debris.
Its four-inch screen feels positively Montana after all the Rhode Island displays we’re used to, and there’s even a five-megapixel camera.
It’s based on the classic Coleman your granddad had, but instead of needing a cast iron skillet, you just throw your dogs or t-bone right on its grill. The lids are strainers and everything is color coded so you won’t mix up your pasta primavera with your pals. The only complaint with the system is that it can squeak as you walk—but just squirt a little lubricant to silence it. It weighs 17 pounds—not bad for a car camping shelter of this size—and sets up in less than 10 minutes. Leatherbacks, he recalled, were supposed to be creatures of the tropics, as out of place in chilly, gray Canadian waters as parrots in a Halifax park. You could inchworm your way along the length of the Pacific Crest Trail and still not feel constrained.
The heel is amply padded, with a cushy foam insert the absorbs much of shock, and a flexible forefoot that enhances trail feel. The extras, though, make all the difference: Whereas many backpacking tents stick to one door for weight savings, the Half Dome has two, which makes sharing a small space far easier. Insulation is 800-fill down and, you’re right, that 15-degree temperature rating is wildly optimistic.

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