Outside Magazine, May 1998



It's surprising how far a ten-inch craft can carry you

May 1998

Lost in the Jungle
One morning 27 years ago, a beautiful young woman ventured into Borneo to live among the great red apes. First came worldwide fame, then a long and bizarre descent. This is the story of what happened upriver.
By Linda Spalding


Something Wicked This Way Comes
On Hawaii it closed roads, made homes tremble, and blew would-be big-wave riders right out of the water. Now the nastiest swell in 30 years was headed for Baja — and so were some surfers who were feeling especially, well, lucky.
By Daniel Duane

Another Day Under the Black Volcano
How livable could it be on the island of Montserrat, post-eruption, with ash settling into every cranny, lava blanketing the capital, and packs of animals running wild? Livable enough, say those who stuck around.
By Robert Antoni

A Lovely Sort of Lower Purpose
In praise of so-called marginal places, of dawdling away valuable time, of the why-should-it-be-a-guilty pleasure of pure, unadulterated aimlessness.
By Ian Frazier

Allow Me to Be the First to Congratulate You on Your Stunning Achievement (Damn You)
He said, "I aced America's hardest climb." She said, "I swam from Cuba to Florida." So what did they say? "Like hell you did."
By Florence Williams

The Whaleboat
It's the tiniest of vessels, a mere ten inches long. But unfurl those seven-inch-high sails and boy, what a journey it provides.
By Barry Lopez


Dispatches: News from the Field
Despite plenty of toxic protest, the Department of Energy prepares to open the nation's first permanent nuclear-waste dump.

An amputee climber hopes his third attempt on Everest will be the charm.
More than 7,000 gather to fete snowboarding's new hero, apparently waiting for sparks to fly.
Can you be too green? Seattle comes to grips with a rancid truth.
Robert Redford's new film sets forth a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside a … whatever.

PLUS: David Brower gets a shot at the big enchilada of accolades, French explorer Guy DeLage sees his latest quest sink like a stone, stair racers go global in search of the spotlight, and more.

Out There: One hundred yards of solitude
Never mind the bustling seaports and the huge car ferry bearing down — this was still, at least on this particular evening, a place dedicated to solitude. A reverie on urban wildness, complete with appropriate sound effects.
By Tim Cahill

Field Notes: How Swede it is
Start with about 10,000 sturdy Swedes, from preschoolers to wizened veterans. Give each of them a map and compass and shot of ultrapolite sportsmanship. Now loose them in the woods. The result? The O-ringen, a race quite unlike any other.
By Bucky McMahon

The Wild File
Why do weeping willows weep? Why are moths drawn to light? What's the difference between a pond and a lake?

Destinations: The Nation's Top Sports Camps
No matter what your game, the surest way to step it up is by spending a week under the watchful eye of experts. So you might as well take your tutelage from the best of the best.

Surfing: Bucky McMahon rips the swells with the legendary Paskowitz clan.

Mountain Biking: Mike Steere visits Dirt Camp, where mastering the basics almost takes a backseat to hobnobbing with the stars.

Snowboarding: Zev Borow spends his summer prepping for winter with the carvologists of the High Cascade camp.

Sailing: Laurence Sheehan goes to helm and back with the wise young salts of the Annapolis school.

PLUS: From climbing to road cycling to fly-fishing, a roundup of ten other highly esteemed academies.

Bodywork: No Burden to Shoulder
Assuring yourself of sure-fire shoulders: They're the most mobile — and most vulnerable — of all your joints, so you better know how to ready them for the far-reaching sports of summer. Three on-the-go ways to keep those glenohumerals smiling. PLUS: Stretches that'll keep your back in whack, and sturdier shoulders through the magic of radio waves.

Prescriptions: Keep your muscles from cramping.
Intake: How to tell which carbos are right for you.
Strategies: The keys to honing your running stride.

Review: Crisp shots, no weighting
Little cameras that can: In contrast to their SLR brethren, today's point-and-shoots are light, convenient, and nearly foolproof. Nine of the market's most worthy models.

Buying Right: A new breed of shoe for a new breed of rock jock.
The Other Stuff: The latest in roller skis, form-fitting life vests, and the should-be-standard-issue Leatherman tool.
Books: The Ecology of Eden, by Evan Eisenberg; and more. Between the Lines


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Cover photograph by Frans Lanting