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Adventurers & Explorers

Jun 19, 2018

50HP World Record Attempt: Colin O’Brady Teams Up With The Outdoor Journal

The Outdoor Journal is delighted to announce that they have teamed up with Colin O'Brady for his 50HP World Record Attempt.

WRITTEN BY

The Outdoor Journal

Colin first achieved notoriety following his world record Explorers Grand Slam World Record. We recently covered this achievement in a profile of Colin which you can read here.

The Outdoor Journal will be Colin’s Media Partner as he aims to reach the 50 highest points in each of the United States, faster than anyone has done so before. We will post regular updates, as and when we receive them so make sure that you check back regularly and keep an eye on our live updates page.

Starting with Denali on the 28th June, Colin will compete against the elements, and race against time, as he looks to finally summit Mt. Hood on the 19th July. Of course the weather waits for nobody, so these dates are open to change.

The 50-state high point challenge dates back to 1966. Only 273 people have summited all 50 American high points to date. For many, this achievement takes a lifetime.

Colin will travel nearly 13,000 miles across the country – through five National Parks and over 25 State Parks and National Forests. He’ll walk, run, hike and climb over 300 trail miles to set the record.

Colin will be in constant motion from high point to high point, racing the world record clock. His goal is to crush the current record of 41 days, and push his physical and mental limits to complete the 50 high points challenge in less than 30 days.

The Forest Gump Effect

This challenge goes far beyond setting a world record. It’s not just about Colin. This project is a catalyst for participation. Colin’s calling it the Forrest Gump effect. Colin is on a mission to activate people across the country. This project is an open invitation to everyone to be a part of history, to come out and participate.

Join Colin when’s he’s in your home state –

  • Hike a mile or five with him on the trails.
  • Stand at the top of your state’s high point with Colin.
  • Gather and meet your community members at the trailhead to cheer him on.

Post your videos and photos to social media using the hashtag #50HPandMe, we want to see how you’ve participated.

From Florida’s 300ft Britton Hill to the snowy mountains of the West, there is something in this project for everyone. Explore what’s in your backyard, get outside, and celebrate America’s public lands!

You can follow Colin on Instagram here, and make sure you follow his challenge via our live updates here.

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Events

Jul 10, 2018

The 2018 Whitewater Awards: Nouria Newman and Benny Marr take the spoils.

The Whitewater Awards is a gathering of the world’s best kayakers to show off the biggest and best things that have happened in the sport over the past year.

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WRITTEN BY

Brooke Hess

 To be considered for an award, athletes, photographers, and filmmakers submit media taken over the past year that they believe showcases the best progression in the sport.  

There are sixteen different categories for submission, including separate male and female categories within the “Best of” kayaking categories. Categories include Photographer of the Year, Film of the Year, Expedition of the Year, Best Trick, Best Line, River Stewardship, Grom of the Year, Rider of the Year, along with several others.  Awards are decided upon by a voting process done by the Association of Whitewater Professionals.

This year’s Whitewater Awards was held in the Egyptian Theater in downtown Boise, Idaho. It was hosted on June 14th, the same weekend as the North Fork Championships, which takes place on the North Fork of the Payette River just outside of Boise.  The North Fork Championship is regarded as one of the hardest kayaking races in the world.

The race takes place on Jacob’s Ladder rapid, which is a rapid so difficult and consequential that most kayakers feel accomplished simply by surviving the rapid, much less racing the rapid. Nouria Newman, a 3-time NFC racer and winner of this year’s Whitewater Awards Female Rider of the Year describes it well,

“The NFC is the hardest race in whitewater kayaking. [Jacob’s Ladder] is a scary, consequential rapid. Running it is challenging, and it only gets harder to race it and make the gates.”

In order to minimize the risk involved in the race, event organizers have developed a strict qualification process for racers. 30 racers will qualify to race Jacob’s Ladder. Ten of them are pre-qualified from placing top ten at the event the year before. Those ten then read numerous athlete applications and vote on the next ten racers who will join them.  The last ten racers are decided through a qualification race on S-Turn rapid, another one of the North Fork’s infamous class V rapids.

Every year on this same weekend in June, kayakers, photographers, and filmmakers from around the world flock to Idaho to celebrate quality whitewater, progression of the sport, and the community that surrounds it. Both the North Fork Championship and the Whitewater Awards had great turnouts of athletes and spectators this year.

John Webster

The finalists of each category in the Whitewater Awards were presented in film format at the Egyptian Theater for the entire audience to view, with the winner being announced live. Winners were presented with an award and expected to give a short speech at the event. The big winners of the night were Nouria Newman and Benny Marr, who were awarded with Line of the Year and Rider of the Year in the female and male categories. Nouria says that voting for the “best” in each category is a challenging process, “…voting is always tricky, (look at both French and U.S. presidents, not too sure if they are really the best available option). And it is also very hard to compare lines and rapids. What’s bigger? What’s harder? I got voted Best Line of the Year with a good line down Parque Jurassic, a long technical rapid, but Rata’s line down Graceland, which is a huge slide, was equally as good, if not better.”

No matter how tricky the voting process can be, Nouria agrees that the Whitewater Awards plays a large role in the progression of the sport, “I think it’s super cool to see what people can do in their kayak, how they push the limit of the sport and how they open new possibilities.”

For more information about the Whitewater Awards, you can visit whitewaterawards.com, you can also follow them on Facebook and on Instagram.

You can follow Nouria on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

You can follow Benny on Facebook and Instagram.

Cover photo courtesy of Ari Walker

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