Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Thrill Packed Vacation Adventures

Outdoor adventures are possibly the most fun way to spend a vacation. There are dozens of activities to choose from that can be enjoyed by the whole family. The best part is they don't cost as much as one might think. So if you need a break and want to try something new and exciting, there is a world of adventure just waiting for you to find it.

Sports such as skiing, rock climbing, paragliding, snowboarding, etc are the best ways to get your adrenaline flowing and are also a great way to meet new people. Outdoor adventures don't require you to travel all over the world or spend lots of money. Most of these can probably be taken up with minimum investment and can be found in close proximity to one's own home.

Activities such as hiking and camping make you appreciate your surroundings and rejuvenate you more than any fancy spa or health resort. There are plenty of fantastic outdoor adventures you can take up in your vicinity. With some minimum research and expense, you too could be blazing new trails with your back pack and a trusty compass or scaling new heights with a rock-climbing group. Survival camps, trout fishing, nature trails, bird watching, cross country biking and running are to be found all over in the summer. Keen insect and butterfly aficionados can combine their hobby with the great outdoors, because that's exactly where you'll find them.

Travel guides can help you narrow your search and provide you with easy, cost effective solutions to all your outdoor adventure travel needs. The Internet is another fantastic source for such information. You can book your next outdoor adventure with the simple click of the mouse. Another great thing about outdoor travel is that it needn't be limited to any particular place or season. Places that used to offer only skiing in the winter now also provide you with trekking and mountain climbing in the summer.

The sea is an unending source of adventure. Deep sea diving, snorkeling, whale watching and fishing are just a few things one can do while exploring the ocean. Water sports like surfing and wakeboarding also provide plenty of thrills for outdoor adventure seekers.

Senior citizens and the physically impaired need not be deprived of their share of adventure. Specially arranged and chaperoned tours are available. On the other side of the spectrum are those who are very fit and enjoy extreme adventures like white water rafting, bungee jumping and sky diving. Here, too, the great thing is that you get together with like-minded people and so many lifelong friendships are formed because of this.

However there are some basic requirements if you wish to travel outdoors. Skills such as first aid are a must. If you're not sure, take a quick course so you are prepared. A person would also be required to have sufficient stamina, resistance to varying temperatures and a certain amount of physical fitness to enjoy these activities to the fullest.

Whatever your tastes may be, whether on land, in the sky, or in the water, just getting to the outdoors means there is an outdoor adventure waiting for you.

Article Source: http://www.articlesarea.com/

How To Keep Your Rambling And Climbing Roses From Getting Out Of Control

For those who love the gorgeousness of flora around them have definite favorites in special roses that bloom and make their environment rich and pleasurable. Climbing or rambling roses are popular around the world with men and women of all ages. They are found in different varieties of texture and color everywhere but the few basic rules of their maintenance and care remain universal. Of course one has to take into account the idiosyncrasies of different regions, but their overall upkeep remains the same.

Before embarking on this gardening route you should be well versed with the history of the Climbing and rambling roses. They have two kinds of shoots, the main cane which is center of the structure and the flowering shoots which grow from the canes. plan well how you can space them best and regulate their growth before plantation.

Rambling roses are taller and flexible enough to be planted anywhere while climbing roses need to be tied and kept in place due to their weight. Before planting, decide on what you want more with your roses, a once a year bloom during the four to six weeks of spring as with rambling roses or blooming and rioting colors throughout the year of your climbing roses.

There is a lot of dedication and time devotion related to growing roses. The soil needs to be nourished with manure and fertilizers and checked thoroughly for holding ample water and nutrients for growth.

To give a particular direction to your roses' growth, tie them up as soon as they start growing. Climbing roses are heavy and need a definite path to grow. You can add really style to your garden by using climbing roses to accent and add height.

If you want your roses to grow well and healthy make sure to prune them good and often. Spending a little time with your roses throughout the season will help keep them looking beautiful.

The interim weather of harsh and cruel winters can totally destroy precious roses. Protect them by wrapping them into bundles and covering them with straws mulch for warmth and prevent frost from settling.

If you want to add to the beauty of your garden with rambling and climbing roses, make sure you have made the necessary preparations and research to maintain and grow them well. You can choose the proper structure and appropriate direction of their growth with some advanced planning. You cannot simply plant precious roses and forget all about them. If you do not have time care for them, or if you travel a lot make sure that you hire adequate help to look after your roses in your absence.

Article Source: http://www.articlesarea.com/

Climbing the Great Wall of China

The history of the great wall is one which is difficult to comprehend, although it is said the construction of the wall began in the warring states period in the early seventh century BC.

The Great Wall of China is the one the artificial wonders of the world which symbolizes the greatness of China. With a functionality of over a thousand years, the great wall was built to protect the villages from the invasion of the northern tribes providing a stable life, culture and government. The history of this wall is what contributed to the growth of China in terms of political, economy, culture and tourism.
The length of the Great wall extends approximately 6700 kilometers across deserts, and plateaus from the border of China to the Hun territories in the north. The beauty of the great wall is such that you cannot appreciate its beauty except you climb it step by step. It is better seen from an aerial perspective if you are on the plane or a helicopter.

In the ancient times, it was called the Wall of ten thousand li (a li is one third of a mile) and its construction started as earth works built for the protection of the different kingdoms. Each kingdom had its own section of wall; like in the east, the wall was built out of stones and bricks, while the section on the western part of China was built with less durable materials. The individual sections of the wall was later renovated and connected to one another during the time of the Qin dynasty (221 – 206 BC) when Emperor Qin recruited peasants, soldiers and farmers to work on the wall. This tradition continued for centuries until each dynasty added to the height, length and design of the wall through forced labor. The wall has now become a major landmark for tourists visiting China.

The Great Wall of China can be climbed from different sections all of which serve different purposes. The four main sections best suited for climbing and sightseeing are the Badaling section, Mutianyu section, Simatai section and the Shixiaguan section.
The great wall at Badaling became a strategic point of the wall since the Warring states period when it was built.

Being the very first section of the wall to be opened to tourists, it has recorded a statistics of about 140 million visitors who have climbed successively. This section was built with huge bar stones which weighed hundreds of kilograms with watch towers at every distance. These watch towers were used as the deployment points for the military during the olden days. This section of the wall is very crowded being that it is the most visited section.

The Simatai Great Wall is located in the northeast of Beijing. Its construction started in the Ming dynasty and measures around 5.4 kilometers with 35 watch towers. This section of the wall retained its original feature and has earned the reputation of being the most beautiful section of the wall. Unlike the other sections, Simatai section of the great wall is very quiet and remote and this has challenged many hikers to climb this section in quest of adventure.

The Mutianyu section of the great wall is the most preserved section of the great wall which is very important in Chinese military history. This section has cable cars installed allowing tourists to move from end to the other. It is slightly rugged and full of green plans making it the greenest part of the wall. The Mutianyu section is noted as the essence of the great wall because of the distinct style and construction of this part.
Shixiaguan Great Wall is the most part of the great wall to be opened to visitors and still shows the ruins of some of the old construction from the ancient times.

In conclusion, the great of china is definitely a must see on your next trip to china. In order for you to enjoy your tour around the wall, it is advisable to consult the services of a tour operator in China to assist you with the itinerary.

Article Source: http://www.articlesarea.com/

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Climbing Plants - Your Complete Gardening Resource.

A wonderful addition to the outdoor decoration of almost any space in plant life. Although trees and shrubs are always an important part of any landscape design, climbing plants can add an extra touch. When you are considering the purchase of any outdoor plants it’s a good idea to visit a local expert. Almost every community has a gardening store which employs people who have a vast knowledge in the area of climbing plants. They will be able to suggest which varieties will work well in the space that you have and can also confirm whether or not what you want will actually work for you.

If you need one that will do well growing against a wall there are many choices including clematis, wisteria, climbing hydrangea, golden hop and star jasmine. Clematis is a variety that produces purple/blue bell shaped flowers and fern like plant life. Wisteria is a hardy climbing plant that boasts lilac colored flowers that grow in the shape of beans. My personal favorite climbing plants are the star jasmine, which produces leather like, dark green leaves and beautiful white blooms that have an unmatched, abundant perfume.

Flowers can add a perfumed as well as visual aspect to your outdoor area. You may choose climbing plants that flower each year. These will take several years to reach their full potential but once they do they will create climbing plants of color on a gazebo, a fence or even up the side of a house. If you are looking for a variety that will provide lots of color, try the blue trumpet vine. This climbing plant blooms from autumn through summer and has bright blue flowers on a twining stem.

Another species of this plant are also available that produce white flowers. Another colorful climbing plant is the Mandeville. It produces flowers of pink, yellow and rose, and puts out quite a lovely smell. Taking care of any type of living thing requires special care and that includes plants whether they are found indoors or outdoors. Climbing plants will require regular watering as well as fertilization from time to time. Again you’ll want to consult with a gardening specialist concerning what fertilizer is best.

If you are an avid gardener, try giving one a bit of space in your garden. You may be surprised at how well climbing plants grow and are able to adapt to their environments. Some climbing plants require a stable base from which to flourish, while others can adapt quite well growing up against a wall or fence. See what climbing plants have to offer by giving one a home in your yard today.

Article Source: http://www.SubmitYourNewArticle.com

Linda E. Joy provides readers with up-to-date commentaries, articles, and reviews for gardening, home as well as related information.

Packing Your Backpack for Europe

Nothing beats backpacking in Europe if you get the opportunity. So, you probably want to know what to pack for Europe.

Packing Your Backpack for Europe

Millions of people head off to Europe on a backpacking trip each year. Having done it five times, I can tell you that it will be one of the best times of your life. That being said, you must take some things with you. On the positive side, you don’t need that much.

Europe is not another planet. I mention this because you should keep in mind you can buy everything there if you forget it here. The first time people go backpacking in Europe, they tend to completely overdue it on the packing front. You are not climbing Mount Everest, so don’t overdue it!

The first things to pack are clothes. Depending on where you are going, you may need clothes for warm weather or cold. Assuming it is warm, you need a couple of shirts that are wrinkle resistant. You will buy others there, so don’t pack ten. You also will need a pair of shorts and a bathing suit. If you plan on visiting museums and churches, you will need a pair of long pants to get into many of them. Pack something light that is wrinkle resistant.

For your feet, you can load up on socks because they do not take much space. You will need some sandals and then a pair of something comfortable. Some prefer hiking boots, but I usually went with cross trainers. Whatever you do, make sure you get used to the shoes before heading off. You are going to walk a lot, so blisters from new shoes can be a killer.

On the personal front, you need a brush, toothpaste and any medicinal needs. That is it. You can buy anything else you need as you need it. There is zero point to lugging around shampoo all over Europe. Murphy’s law says it will open in your backpack! Keep it super simple.

While your trip will result in great memories, they will fade in time. Take a camera and, of course, one of our travel journals. The camera should be hardy so it can take the inevitable beating that will occur. Our Nomad travel journals are compact and in a case. They are perfect for trips to Europe because we were on one when we got the idea!

Europeans can read. This means you can buy guidebooks over there. If you plan to visit three or four countries, take the guidebook for the FIRST country only. You can pick up the others over there or trade with other backpackers. Guidebooks are heavy and this will save you the aggravation of hauling them everywhere. Also, cybercaf├ęs are everywhere, so you do not need to bring a laptop unless you really have a specific need.

Finally, keep copies of your passport and any supporting documentation with you. One set goes in your backpack while another goes in your shorts, money belt or wherever you have space.

Pack light. If you forget something, you can buy it over there. Have a blast!

Article Source: http://www.ArticleJoe.com


Rick Chapo is with NomadJournals.com - makers of journals. Visit us to read more articles on backpacking.

Travel Tips For Your Vacation Rental Trip to Bulgaria

Bulgaria offers pleasures for each one's taste. Thinking of an active holiday? Bulgaria has it - swimming, skiing, riding, climbing, hunting, fishing... Thinking of relaxing - amazing nature, sunny beaches, healing spas, monasteries and churches, hospitable towns and villages... Ancient culture, endless beaches and an emerald sea, high mountains with marvellous gorges and caves, clear lakes and rivers full of fish, wide valleys, healing springs, ancient culture, hospitable people, tempting cuisine and wines, diverse flora and fauna...

All accommodation places in Bulgaria have been categorised according to the 5-star international system. Privatisation has had a favourable impact and today the country is proud of hotels and restaurants that meet the modern world standard.

When you are ready for that once in a lifetime experience of an Bulgarian vacation, consider a private home rental for your source of lodging. Hotels can be nice, but staying in a private home rented for the occasion can give you a chance to see the real Bulgaria. Explore the countryside, walk into the village and visit with the residents, and see what it feels like to actually go home, to a cabin or villa at the end of the day, living as the Bulgarians do. Or, try a beach house if that suits you or an apartment if you prefer a more urban setting. Getting to know the local people by living among them for an extended stay of a few weeks will give you a chance to learn some of the language, or if you already speak Bulgarian to brush up on your skills. It will also give you a chance to learn local history in a very unique way, from the people themselves. You will appreciate all of the similarities of Bulgarian culture with your own, and learn to appreciate the differences as well. The Bulgarians are a wonderful, friendly people with a rich culture and history. Taking the time to live among them, getting to know them as friends and neighbors, is truly an experience you will always remember.

Private homes for rent to vacationers in Bulgaria can be found in various price ranges. If you are looking for luxury, there are villas available. If something more rustic suits your taste and budget, then smaller homes and even old farmhouses are available to appeal to all tastes. Just as an example, one property includes two bedrooms, queen size beds, kitchen, laundry area, bathroom, central eat and the satellite television, telephone and VCR that most tourists are used to having. Imagine though the coziness and comfort of coming back to the house after a day of sight seeing to sit by the fire place, drinking a glass of a local wine, having a light dinner of pasta, and enjoying the peace and quiet of your surroundings. Staying in a hotel in a major city will certainly show you the tourist hot spots, but staying in a private home will show you the real Bulgaria.

There are so many wonderful places to visit in Bulgaria like:
- Nessebar - beautiful small town on Bulgaria's Black Sea coast a few hours south of Varna. Another one of Bulgaria's many UNESCO world heritage sites.
- Sozopol - together with Nessebar these are the two sea towns with traditional houses and ancient dig sites.
- Bansko - a beautiful old village in the Pirin mountains with refurbished homes, stone wall, and cobblestone streets, but increasingly overtaken by resort hotels. Good place for skiing in winter and hiking in summer. The birthplace of the Bulgarian revival movement. If you want a true mountain village experience, there are a few other villages nearby from which to choose. In the beginning of august an annual Jazz festival is being held in the town. Skiiers and Snowboarders could find BanskoSki useful.

No visa is required for entry for citizens of the US, Canada, UK, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand.

However, foreigners have to register at the police after 72 hours. If you have booked with a travel agency, this will be taken care of. If not - usually, your hotel will handle the necessary paperwork (ask). If you do not stay in a hotel, you will need to go to the police and take the tedious task of registering on your own. Especially for UK and US citizens, Bulgaria is really cracking down on this. Failure to register might mean a 2000 Leva fine (about $1200 US). Also take care that you have an entry stamp in your passport, otherwise your exit could be quite troublesome.

Bulgaria offers tourist attractions all around the year. Most popular are summer seaside resorts, along the entire Black Sea coastline. In winter numerous ski resorts are there to attract tourists. There are many spa, trekking and historical destinations that offer incredibly rich variety of experiences.

There are hundreds, maybe thousands of mineral water springs around the country, so this is something you'd better taste and drink. Ayrian and boza are two traditional Balkan non-alcoholic beverages.

Article Source: http://www.ArticleJoe.com

Milan Matchev -founder of Bulgaria Vacation Rentals. ArrangeYourVacation - Holiday Homes - Vacation Rentals Worldwide is a leader in luxury vacation rentals worldwide, with an extensive portfolio of luxury villas and homes. To place a free advertisement for your vacation rentals or holiday homes in Bulgaria - visit bulgaria-vacation-rentals.com

Ice Climbing - Preserve Your Experiences

Ice climbing is a great way to escape the rat race and live on the edge. Alas, your ice climbing experiences can fade with time. The best way to prevent this is to keep a ice climbing journal for your adventures.

Ice Climbing Journals

Take a minute to give some consideration to your most recent ice climbing experience. What sticks out in your mind besides the fact it was cold? Did you climb a waterfall? Now think about the first time you ever went ice climbing. Undoubtedly, you remember few things about the geography, people you went with, particular ice climbing routes and spectacular views. The experiences you’ve forgotten are lost to time. If you keep an ice climbing journal, this won’t be the case.

There are famous instances of people keeping journals throughout time. Of course, Anne Frank’s Diary is the best example. In her diary, Anne kept a running commentary of the two years her family spent hiding from the Nazis. While your ice climbing experiences better be more lighthearted, keeping a journal will let you remember them as the years pass.

A good ice climbing journal combines a number of characteristics. First, it should be compact so you don’t have to take up unnecessary space for other things. Second, it should have a case to protect it from the elements and so on. Third, the journal should contain blank areas to write your notes. Fourth, the journal should contain cue spaces to remind you to keep notes on specific things. Cues should include:

1. Who you went ice climbing with,

2. The nature and quality of the ice,

3. Who you met and contact information for them,

4. The geographic and weather conditions, and

5. Any unique things that occurred while ice climbing.

6. The routes you took up the ice and alternatives.

7. Any inside information provided by experienced locals.

At the end of the ice climbing trip, you should be able to get the following from your journal:

1. Contact information for other climbers you met,

2. Enough detail to provide you or a friend with a guide if you climb the location a second time.

3. Memories to reflect upon years later, and

4. Something to pass on to your friends, children and grandchildren.

To get the most out of your ice climbing journal, you should write in it just before you climb, as you summit and when you return. Doing so will give you an accurate picture of your thoughts throughout the climb.

Article Source: http://www.ArticleJoe.com

Mountain Climbing - Preserve Your Experiences

Mountain climbing is a great way to escape the rat race and be one with nature. Alas, your mountain climbing experiences can fade with time. The best way to prevent this is to keep a mountain climbing journal for your adventures.

Mountain Climbing Journals

Take a minute to give some consideration to your most recent mountain climbing experience. What sticks out in your mind? Now think about the first time you ever went mountain climbing. Undoubtedly, you remember few things about the geography, people you went with, particular mountain climbing routes and spectacular views. The experiences you’ve forgotten are lost to time. If you keep a mountain climbing journal, this won’t be the case.

There are famous instances of people keeping journals throughout time. Of course, Anne Frank’s Diary is the best example. In her diary, Anne kept a running commentary of the two years her family spent hiding from the Nazis. While your mountain climbing experiences better be more lighthearted, keeping a journal will let you remember them as the years pass.

A good mountain climbing journal combines a number of characteristics. First, it should be compact so you don’t have to take up unnecessary space for other things. Second, it should have a case to protect it from rain, spills and so on. Third, the journal should contain blank areas to write your notes. Fourth, the journal should contain cue spaces to remind you to keep notes on specific things. Cues should include:

1. Who you went mountain climbing with,

2. Where you camped and if you enjoyed it,

3. Who you met and contact information for them,

4. The geographic and weather conditions, and

5. Any unique things that occurred while mountain climbing.

6. The routes you took up the mountain and alternatives.

7. Any inside information provided by experienced locals.

At the end of the mountain climbing trip, you should be able to get the following from your journal:

1. Contact information for other climbers you met,

2. Enough detail to provide you or a friend with a guide if you climb the location a second time.

3. Memories to reflect upon years later, and

4. Something to pass on to your friends, children and grandchildren.

To get the most out of your mountain climbing journal, you should write in it just before you climb, as you summit and when you return. Doing so will give you an accurate picture of your thoughts throughout the climb.

Mountain climbing is a great way to commune with nature. Make sure to preserve the experience.

Article Source: http://www.ArticleJoe.com

Stair Elevator : Use Anywhere

Stairs are an essential aspect of departmental stores, malls, apartment and office buildings, airports, and railway stations. Stair climbing is often recommended by doctors to keep the body in shape, as it is an activity that burns lots of calories. However, stair climbing may not be possible or advisable for the old and infirm. These categories of persons can benefit from stair elevators.

A stair elevator can enable elderly and disabled individuals to live in a multi-floor dwelling. It is propelled by motor and offers various options. For example you can choose from external, keyed, hand-held pendant control, and flip-up package. External stair elevators can be installed outside a building, but will be difficult to use in inclement weather.

The keyed version requires a key to be put in place and turned for use. This is an expensive option and usually not required. With the flip-up package, the bottom part of the rail can be moved out of the way. The hand-held pendant control is available in a few models. In addition, there are stair elevators designed for commercial purposes. These can be used in places like churches and stores. Stair elevators are also available to suit specific needs. For example, standing lifts can benefit those customers who cannot bend their legs to sit on a chair. Similarly, elevators with greater seat depth can be provided to very tall customers for better comfort.

Stair lift is the commonest type of stair elevator. It is a seat that moves on a tract installed to the staircase. It can be removed and installed elsewhere, if required. Some stair lifts can be folded when not in use. Controls are wall-attached, chair-attached, or wireless hand-held. Medical insurance usually does not cover the cost of stair elevator.

A stair lift has another use. It can be used to carry heavy luggage and supplies up and down stairs. It can work even in the event of power failure if it has backup batteries.

Stair lifts come with swivel seat and seat belt. The former ensures that the seat swivels only at the landing and not while the chair is in transit. In addition there are sensors to stop the lift if obstacles are found on the path.

Stair lifts are beneficial for the elderly and the infirm and can enable them to move up and down multiple floors without difficulty. They come with manufacturer's guarantee and last long. However, it is advisable to have them checked every six months by a local dealer. Author Resource:- Thomas MacIntosh writes about on Stair Elevator to visit :- stage elevator



http://www.articlefriendly.com/articledetail.php?artid=3262&catid=239

Benefits of Using a Wine Rack

Temperature, humidity, lighting conditions and movement play important roles for wines to mature properly. Wines need to be kept in a safe place if they are to be stored for any amount of time. And there is no other way of storing wines safely other than investing in a wine rack.

While choosing a wine rack it is to be remembered that the rack should store the wine the right way. Another important decision to make is the size of the rack - whether you want to store a few bottles or hundreds. There are lots of varieties and designs to choose from.

Horizontal wine racks are the best among all the choices available. Vertical wine racks are not a good option for storing wine. In vertical racks the cork will dry out and eventually shrink, causing air to come in contact with the wine and your wine will be ruined. Vertical racks are useful for short term storage for wines that are intended to be consumed young. Tilted racks will either leave the cork dry or deposit sediments near the cork. Horizontal racks are the best, as the cork remains moist and swelled preventing your wine from unwanted air contact. Sediment falls on the side of the bottle, far away from the cork to prevent spoilage when pouring. It is also cost effective, the design is simple and more racks can be added with ease.

Wine racks can be of metal or wood, placed on the floor or hang from ceilings. If metal is your choice then you can opt for Wine Tower, Lily Wall, Echelon, Wine Lounge or choose from Calistoga Wine Hanger or Climbing Tendril. Wooden wine racks have the advantage of adding extra storage space as and when you add to your wine collection. Wooden racks are usually constructed of maple, cedar and mahogany that have strength, hardness and visual appeal. Choose from Rectangular Bin, Diamond Bin, Waterfall Individual Rack or the Curved Corner Rack. For the more creative ones you can order your own wooden kit. The kit includes bolts, wrench and wooden racks machined with pre-drilled holes that can be installed in no time at all.

Wine racks come in various sizes. From small wine racks that can hold one or two bottles to those that can hold thousands. Small or medium sized racks work fine for your home collection while for commercial purposes large sized racks are required. Depending on your choice, wine racks can cost anything between $20 and $1000. Author Resource:- Rory H. Hawkins writes about wnie racks and other interesting topics. For more information on wine storage racks visit us today.

Camping Equipment Can Make or Break Your Trip

Do you enjoy camping in the great outdoors? Before you spend a night or several nights in the wilderness, there are some basic things that you should prepare yourself with for the trip. Camping equipment comes in a variety of types and price ranges. With a little bit of research, you can make your trip a comfortable and affordable one.

Shelter is of primary importance when planning a camping trip. One thing you can never truly depend on is the type of weather you will encounter. You will want a cover for when the elements get bad and for sleeping. Unless you have a camper, a tent will provide you with the protection you will need. There are many different tents to choose from. In addition to different shaped and constructed models, there are different seasoned tents, and single sectioned tents or multi-sectioned tents for families. There are tents, which can accommodate different numbers of people also.

Sleeping is another area to address. A sleeping bag is a staple of a camping trip. But if the ground is just not good for your aging body, you can also get a sleeping pad to provide a little more softness. Also available are air mattresses and even cots. Each will provide different levels of comfort depending on your needs and wants.

Cooking is another area where equipment is needed. When camping, it's not like you can go out to eat, as the nearest restaurant might be quite a drive. And your area may not be covered under delivery from the nearest pizzeria. Besides, eating out and ordering in is not camping. Cooking in the outdoors is what camping is about. You can do this over a fire pit, but camping stoves are available to make it easier. You can also purchase grills or Dutch ovens to fulfill your needs in this area. Special pots and pans made of cast iron to endure harsh treatment are also available to help you in your cooking chores.

Since you will be cooking, you will need to also bring food. Coolers are vital. Food must be kept cold if it is perishable. Camping coolers are durable and protect your food items. They have latches to secure the lid, are rust resistant and can drain without tilting.

Since you will probably not have the option of electricity, lanterns are quite valuable in the extreme darkness campsites may offer. Warding off an intruder in the middle of the night or a trip to the bathroom at 2 a.m. will necessitate some light for maneuvering. Some lanterns have built in nightlights and are weather resistant. They can also be recharged.

If you are going to be doing any hiking, then you will want to take a backpack. This way you can easily transport, on your back, any equipment you may need. This will allow your hands to be free when climbing.

Camping equipment makes camping easier and more enjoyable. There are many items available from specialty camping stores and general department stores. Decide what you want and need and look around. You will find items you didn't even know were offered. And items that have been around for years are constantly being improved upon. Make your camping trip a good one. Go out and find what is available. By having durable equipment you will have the best.
Author Resource:- More Camping Equipment Articles at http://www.eCamping-Today.com. Learn how to operate a Successful Adsense Website Network at http://eWebCreator.com. Matthew Hick has been designing profitable Niche Adsense Websites for over 5 years.


http://www.articlefriendly.com/articledetail.php?artid=3723&catid=285

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Vacation Travel Insurance Tips

Travel insurance is an important but often overlooked part of your vacation. Whether you are traveling to a foreign country or to the next state you should consider travel insurance.

Some of the reasons to have insurance are to cover medical expenses, life insurance for your family, or trip insurance when something goes wrong.

If you have medical coverage, check with your insurer to find out the specifics regarding your planned destination.

You can buy medical coverage for the duration of your trip or for longer periods. Some travel insurance policies cover multiple trips of specific duration. Some will cover you for travel up to a year.

Planning a skiing or mountain climbing vacation? You may want to consider evacuation insurance. If you need to be rescued it is quite possible that the you will end up with a hefty bill to pay for the service.

If you are going on a cruise, taking an organized tour or just flying on an airplane you may want trip cancellation insurance. You or a family member may get sick at the last minute or your plans may change unexpectedly.

Many companies do not offer refunds and you could be out thousands of dollars. There are many things out of your control that can mess with your plans. Refunds are tough to get sometimes.

Other popular coverage is loss of baggage, baggage delay, travel delay, dental, 24 Hour Traveler Assistance, and accidental death.

If you are driving out of the country definitely check with your auto insurer. Purchase any extra coverage needed. You may want to ask about an international roadside assistance policy.

Auto breakdowns and accidents are bad enough at home but the problems are compounded abroad.

Check with your credit card company. You may have some coverage if you purchase your vacation with their card.

If you are traveling with a group you may be able to get coverage cheaper as a group rather than individually.

Sometimes you will pay more for less coverage if you buy it through a travel agent who makes a nice commission. This is not always the case but it's your money. Shop around for the best deal.

Article Source: http://www.ArticleJoe.com

The author, of this article, Peter Shannon, is the owner of the website www.1001-vacation-ideas.com. Here you will find a large collection of vacation and getaway ideas for travelers searchable by theme and location.

There Are Many Exciting Things To Do In Denver

Denver offers the perfect reason for a vacation or a getaway full of excitement and fun through out the year. It is also known as the "Mile High City". There is a plenty to do whether dining, indulging in high-class entertainment or simply going through the history lanes in museums. Denver has a great nightlife, no wonder it sees a number of major concert tours stopping over in its premises. For the people who are inclined towards sports Denver offers a number of professional sports teams.

Sports teams like the Colorado Avalanche hockey team and Denver Broncos football team provide great excitement in Denver. There are amateur sports teams as well, and Denver even has a professional lacrosse team. The Nuggets make their home in Denver, and you can always get reasonably priced tickets to see big-name visiting teams.

Denver boasts of cultural arts. The heritage centers and museums in Denver include the Black American West Museum and Heritage Center and Buffalo Bill's Museum and Grave. There is also a history museum, a children's museum, and a railroad museum in Denver. You can take a quick trip outside the city to experience Cherokee Ranch and Castle. The Arvada Center for the Arts and Humanities offers the best in theater, dance, gallery, and hands-on learning.

Denver is well-known for its petite but popular cultural events like symphony show, Colorado ballet company's performance, the children's chorale and the special shows at Arvada center. The Colorado ballet company features the holiday favorite 'The Nutcracker Suite', which is worth watching if you like theatre and ballet.

Denver's two great animal attractions, the Denver Zoo and the Downtown Aquarium attract kids of all ages. They offer world-class animal encounter experiences that include a variety of species from all over the globe, and some species from right around the region.

The beautiful and rugged settings of Denver, right in the heart of American west, offer some great options for exciting outdoor activities. There is no dearth of things that can be done in Denver. You just need to be adventurous enough to explore them. You could go for hot air balloon rides, horseback rides, jeep tours, rafting trips, rock climbing trips or simply a biking tour down the Denver region.

Gardens and parks. If you aren't really into adventure, but want a nice place to spend an afternoon, visit one of Denver's many parks and gardens. These include the Butterfly Pavilion and Insect Center, the Cave of the Winds, and the Denver Botanic Gardens. Each of these offers unique experiences and even some learning experiences. Bring a lunch and enjoy a picnic.

Festivals. Check the time of year for festivals. Denver is a city that has quite a few festivals throughout the year, ensuring fun activities for singles, couples, and families. Some of these are the Cherry Creek Arts Festival, the Cinco de Mayo, Colorado Renaissance Festival, and the Colorado Music Festival.

Article Source: http://www.ArticleJoe.com

About the author: Winifred Hawden is the chief writer at Fall in Love with Denver there's a wealth of knowledge on the website, plus their free newsletter is well worth signing up for too. Read many more interesting articles on Denver at: www.fildenver.com/articles
Don't reprint the same version as everyone else. Get your own unique content denver article here.

Mountain Climbing - Preserve Your Experiences

Mountain climbing is a great way to escape the rat race and be one with nature. Alas, your mountain climbing experiences can fade with time. The best way to prevent this is to keep a mountain climbing journal for your adventures.

Mountain Climbing Journals

Take a minute to give some consideration to your most recent mountain climbing experience. What sticks out in your mind? Now think about the first time you ever went mountain climbing. Undoubtedly, you remember few things about the geography, people you went with, particular mountain climbing routes and spectacular views. The experiences you’ve forgotten are lost to time. If you keep a mountain climbing journal, this won’t be the case.

There are famous instances of people keeping journals throughout time. Of course, Anne Frank’s Diary is the best example. In her diary, Anne kept a running commentary of the two years her family spent hiding from the Nazis. While your mountain climbing experiences better be more lighthearted, keeping a journal will let you remember them as the years pass.

A good mountain climbing journal combines a number of characteristics. First, it should be compact so you don’t have to take up unnecessary space for other things. Second, it should have a case to protect it from rain, spills and so on. Third, the journal should contain blank areas to write your notes. Fourth, the journal should contain cue spaces to remind you to keep notes on specific things. Cues should include:

1. Who you went mountain climbing with,

2. Where you camped and if you enjoyed it,

3. Who you met and contact information for them,

4. The geographic and weather conditions, and

5. Any unique things that occurred while mountain climbing.

6. The routes you took up the mountain and alternatives.

7. Any inside information provided by experienced locals.

At the end of the mountain climbing trip, you should be able to get the following from your journal:

1. Contact information for other climbers you met,

2. Enough detail to provide you or a friend with a guide if you climb the location a second time.

3. Memories to reflect upon years later, and

4. Something to pass on to your friends, children and grandchildren.

To get the most out of your mountain climbing journal, you should write in it just before you climb, as you summit and when you return. Doing so will give you an accurate picture of your thoughts throughout the climb.

Mountain climbing is a great way to commune with nature. Make sure to preserve the experience.

Article Source: http://www.ArticleJoe.com

Rick Chapo is with NomadJournals.com - makers of outdoors gifts. Visit us to read more about the great outdoors.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Mountain, Ice and Rock Climbing Gift Ideas

Some people just have the urge to climb up and up. If you're giving gifts to a climber, here are a few mountain, ice and rock climbing gift ideas.

Climbing Gifts

You can usually identify a climber at an early age. You come home from work and the energetic two year old is hanging from the top shelf of the bookcase. By the age of five, they've progressed to hanging off the edge of the roof and you're on a first name basis with your doctor. Don't even ask about the teenage years!

Since you can't beat a climber, you might as well give in to their passion. Here are few climbing gift ideas.

1. Avalanche Beacon � A new climbing toy is an invitation to climb. Since yours will come in the form of a Christmas gift, the climber can be expected to immediately climb mountains, rock walls or iced over waterfalls. Don't try to stop them. Just give them an avalanche beacon, an electronic device that sends out a signal if they happen to bring the mountain down on top of them. Backcountry is a good brand. You can expect to pay $100 to $300 to keep them alive.

2. Grip Strengthener � When it comes to hanging off the side of a cliff, the ability to grip the wall is literally the key to life. A grip strengthener is a device climbers can carry around with them to build up their grip by repetitively squeezing the resistance device. Grip Master is a good brand. You can expect to pay $15 to $20.

3. AvaLung � Back to our avalanche theme. Having an avalanche beacon is all well and good, but it doesn't really help if you can't breath while waiting for rescuers. The AvaLung is a very cool device that draws air directly from snow packs and lets climbers breath in the life giving air even if they're under ten or twenty feet of snow. Black Diamond is the best brand and you can expect to pay $100 or so.

4. "Fifty Favorite Climbs" by Mark Kroese. � This is an excellent book for climbers. The book lays out 50 climbs in North America and can be used as a "to do" list by even the best climbers. The book comes with narratives, photographs and detailed route descriptions. An excellent gift that will set you back $30 or so at any major bookstore.

5. Nomad Climbing Journals - A little self-promotion. Nomad Climbing Journals are great gifts for climbers. These writing journals allow climbers to keep track of their climbs, impressions, people the climbed with, routes, contact information and any additional information they feel necessary. Over time, the climbing journals become a history of climbs and a great keepsake. A great Christmas gift, you can see the journal by clicking the link in the byline of this article and expect to pay $25 for the journal with case.

As you know, there is simply no way to keep a climber from climbing. You might as well give in and give them a Christmas climbing gift.

Rick Chapo is with Nomad Journals - makers of writing journals. Climbing Journals make great Christmas gifts for him or her.

http://www.a1articles.com

Climbing Frames and Play Structures - Do you need planning permission

As a retailer of climbing frames and other play structures to the UK market I sometimes get asked if planning permission is needed for putting a play structure in the garden.

The answer to this is 'generally no'. I have yet to come across anyone who has bought a play structure from my web sites and has needed planning permission. These are regarded as temporary structures and there is normally no problem.

However, if you live in a part of the country which is a conservation area, or there are covenants or restrictions in your lease or deeds then these may affect whether you can put up your play structure.

This sort of thing is rare and only you will know if you are affected by anything like this. If you are in any doubt then a quick word with your local planning department should clear up any worries.

Generally, as long as your play structure is going in your back garden, and not inconveniencing your neighbours in any way then there should be no problems.

Obviously, don't even think about putting your play structure in your front garden, as you will definitely need planning permission for that !

So, where is the best place to position your play structure in terms of safety ?
A lot of people want to place their play structure on play bark to provide a safe cushioned surface, and this is a great idea, but it isan expensive option and is really not necessary. If you are buying a climbing frame or other play structure then make sure you look out for one that can be placed on grass.

When measuring up or positioning your play structure make sure that you allow at least 3ft (preferably 6ft) of free space around the play structure. Bear in mind that your children need to walk around the play structure and get access to the various parts of it. If your play structure includes a swing then take into account the amount of space that you are likely to need for a child to be using the swing while another walks in front of, or behind, the swing.

Are there any dangers in your garden which you need to avoid ?

You want to make sure that your play structure is not positioned on top of or near a concrete path. If your child was to fall then you want to make sure they are going to land on grass, not concrete !

Make sure that some of the other less obvious hazards are avoided, such as washing lines, and sheds.

So what about actually installing your play structure ?

Depending on the make and model of the play structure it may need to be concreted into the ground. Some models are designed to have extra length in the frame so that this extra length can be buried in the ground. With these models, burying the extra length is essential, and concreting them into place is optional, but recommended.

The other method of securing your climbing frame or play structure in place is to use metal pegs. These will be attached to the play structure at one end, and the other end can either be buried in the ground or a small amount of concrete can be used to secure it in place.

These are just some of the many considerations that you need to take into account when choosing your kids climbing frame or play structure. If you would like more advice then this is available in the form of a free report from the Climbing Frames Etc. web site.



Chris O'Connor is the owner of a web site selling climbing frames and outdoor
play equipment within the UK.



Source: http://www.a1articles.com

Strong leg muscles really can make a world of difference.

Apart from the weight machines, some of the most effective machines in a gym are the walking, running and climbing machines. Walking and running machines include steppers and treadmills, while climbing machines have pedals that you push with your feet, making it feel like you are climbing stairs.

The reason these machines are important is that they exercise our leg muscles, which are some of the most useful muscles in our body, but at the same time some of the weakest. After all, we are descended from apes, who didn't walk upright � in evolutionary terms, we've only just started walking, and our legs aren't all that great at it yet. Building good muscles in your legs will help you stay on your feet and go for long walks, hikes or runs without feeling tired quickly, like so many people do in this age of the car. Once you get started, you might even want to take up walking as a hobby, and the more you walk, the better your leg muscles will get.

But in that case, why not just go for a real walk, or climb up and down real stairs? Well, you could do that, but you'd be leaving yourself open to the weather on the walk, making it difficult to have a regular walking routine, and while you could just walk up and down some stairs for half an hour each day, people would probably look at you a little oddly.

Within a few weeks of using walking and climbing machines, you should start to feel more energetic � it is surprising how much of how much energy we feel we have comes from the strength of our legs. Even if we don't realise it, we are on our feet for a lot of time every day � yes, even if you work in an office and drive to work � so strong leg muscles really can make a world of difference.



http://www.a1articles.com

Kenya Adventure Tours and safaris; the Extreme Kenya Adventure safari

The snow-copped 5000m+ Mt Kenya is a challenge to many seasoned mountain climbers. There are several built-up resting camps as well as marked climbing routes. Climbing gear and guides are hired at base camp for the 5-6 day climb.

Bungee Jumping adventure tour

Bungee jumping and white water rafting is done 50 km from Nairobi town at Sagana/ that is along the upstream of Tana River.

Biking adventure Safaris

Biking is usually organized activity within wildlife areas from your lodge. Trekking game tours are also done in community group ranches in the Maasai Mara area.

White Water rafting adventure tours

There is a white water rafting spot near the Aberdare Mountains at Sagana. The Savage adventure facility hires out rubber dinghy for rafting the over 3 km of raging river Sagana. Accommodation is provides in tents and other activities include bungee jumping and cliff diving into the river.

Rock climbing adventures

Rock climbing is offered just a few kilometres from Nairobi. Other hiking and walking venues include Mt. Longonot, Suswa and Ol Donyo Sabuk. These are one day trekking and hiking adventure safaris and need not be strenuous.

Other adventure tours include the over Lander camping, off the beaten truck trips. These camping tours usually involve covering larger areas and gets more interior, takes longer days but is also the most rewarding.

Adventure tours will usually include camping in mobile 1-2 man tent units. Catering is provided while transport is by over Landers and or trucks.

Robert Muhoho is a tour operator with landmark safaris. To sample Kenyan adventure safaris and tours visit.http://www.landmarksafaris.com/tours/adventure.php



Source: http://www.a1articles.com

Climbing in Fontainbleau, France

I don't think I have ever been so scared about doing something. There I was, 15 ft (yes that's all) up a rock balancing nicely on the top and stretching out in front of me was a 3 foot gap that I had to bridge across. It took me about 45 minutes and a lot of sweating, coercing and nervous energy whilst teetering on the edge of, what seemed to me, oblivion.

Finally coerced across I felt I could take on the world. What a great end to a days climbing in the top class bouldering arena of a Fontainebleau forest.

I have to ask myself; 'Why am I here?' I have suffered terribly from vertigo, even when tied on with a rope, my arms are as spindly as daddy long legs and as for clinging on to things with your finger nails � forget it!

To be honest, I seem to have developed a slight passion for climbing. It is such an exhilarating experience, a real challenge of mind over matter (I can cling on with my finger nails, and no I won't fall and die) and body over rock. Over the past year or so I have been going to the climbing gym honing the skills of the heel hook, the crimp and the hand jam.

Font, as us seasoned climber's call it, got me using all these skills and when they go wrong you end up crashing to the ground hopefully landing on the mat squarely and being kept in balance by your spotter. The spotter is the person that you will see under a climber teetering on the edge of the rocks, ready to support him should he fall but also there to offer that all needed encouragement up get up the rock, convince you you can bridge the three foot gap or generally laugh at you when you come off an apparently easy climb. Obviously, the spotter did the climb before you.

It's this great comradery, the encouragement to do things you don't think you can, overcoming the fears that you have instilled in yourself that make climbing the sport it is. Add to this that most rocks are in beautiful locations such as the Lake District, the Peak District or towering above the oceans of the world you can see why I have developed a slight passion for it and put myself through the most scary moment of my life bridging a three foot gap fifteen foot off the ground.

Go to Font, it is a beautiful place, just south of Paris, an hour by train. Fontainebleau is also a fascinating old town, with beautiful cobbled streets reaching out to interesting and ancient buildings, most of them holding delightful cafes and restuarants, ideal for the very European pastime of sitting outside watching the world go by with a coffee or some wine.



Source: http://www.a1articles.com

Friday, February 23, 2007

Selecting the Right Climbing Gear: Harness

A climbing harness attaches you to your climbing rope, so it's important that
you know what harness you will need for the type of climbing you'll be doing.
Your harness should fit your body shape for comfort and safety. There are
three general styles of climbing harnesses: Alpine, Sport, and multi-purpose.
Construction varies among these categories to meet your specific needs.
Women's and children's harnesses, for example, have special fit
characteristics. The following suggestions will help you find the right
harness.

Consider Your Climbing Style

You should first decide the type of climbing that you will do the most
often. Once you know your climbing style, you can select the right harness for
your needs.

Multi-Purpose � Multi-purpose harnesses are known as all-around, crag or
sport harnesses. Multi-purpose harnesses are ideal for beginners because they
are designed for a number of climbing applications such as top-roping, sport
and gym climbing. Most multi-purpose harnesses have padded leg loops and
waistbelts for which provides more comfort, especially if you take a fall.
Some multi-purpose harnesses have detachable leg loops which will allow you to
detach your legs while remaining attached to the rope. Most climbing harnesses
have gear loops for carrying your climbing hardware such as carabiners, chalk
bag, quickdraws etc. Multi-purpose harnesses will usually have a front loop
that allows you to attach a belay/rappel device.

Alpine � Alpine climbing harnesses are made for long mountain trips. These
harnesses are pretty basic and usually have minimal padding and very few
extras so that they will be light weight with low bulk. Alpine harnesses are
made of non-absorbent materials so that they will withstand the rough
environment of glacier and alpine climbing. The waistbelt and leg loops on
alpine harnesses are very adjustable to make it easier to get in and out of
when the harness is not needed. The leg loops are sometimes removable so you
can take potty breaks while staying tied into the rope.

Big Wall � Big wall harnesses are for climbers doing multi-pitch, multi-day
climbs like in Zion's National Park or Yosemite Valley. Big wall harnesses
will have lots of padding on the waistbelt and leg loops to relieve pressure
during hanging belays or aid climbing. Big wall harnesses will also have
multiple gear loops that will help put much of the wait on your harness
instead of on your shoulder gear sling. They usually have a full-strength haul
loop in back for towing a rope or heavy gear bag.

Competition � Competition harnesses are the best choice for climbing
competitions like "On Sight Difficulty" or "Speed" events. Competition
harnesses have a slim design and narrow webbing to allow a full range of
motion. Most competition harnesses will typically have little padding and few,
if any extras.

Compare Types of Harnesses

Leg Loop/Waistbelt -- This popular style of harness consists of a padded
waist (or "swami") belt and a pair of leg loops joined together in front with
a belay loop. The waistbelt buckles in front or off to the side, and the leg
loops are usually held up in back of the harness with elastic straps. Leg loop
size may either be fixed or adjustable..

Full Body Harness -- Full-body harnesses are designed to keep you safe in a
wide range of climbing activities. The harness holds your shoulders as well as
your legs, preventing you from slipping out if you rotate upside down during a
fall. Since full-body harnesses have a higher tie-in point than seat
harnesses, they reduce the chance of flipping over backward in the first
place. Full body harnesses are often used in climbing safety courses to ensure
the safety of beginners while they are learning to climb.

Chest Harness -- Chest harnesses are typically worn only on climbs where
you could likely turn upside-down. Falling into a crevasse during a glacier
climb or rappelling with a heavy pack are examples of such situations. The
chest harness is made to be used in conjunction with a sit harness. The
resulting combination is the same as the full-body harness, but with the
versatility of adding or removing the chest portion, as needed.

Test Fit Your Harness

Finding a harness that fits you well is essential. If the harness is too
tight it will restrict your movement. If your climbing harness is too loose,
it will slip, chafe and, in an inverted fall, maybe even let go of you. Just
like clothing, different harness brands fit different body shapes better than
others. Be sure to find one that works well for you.

Whenever you test-fit a harness, make sure you're wearing the kinds of
clothes you're likely to be climbing in. If you plan on carrying a pack with
you as you climb, wear it as well so you can make sure it doesn't cause any
discomfort when worn with the harness.

The Waistbelt -- Your harness waistbelt should be snug, but not too tight
that it is uncomfortable. It should ride just above your hips, but it
shouldn't restrict your breathing. You should not be able to pull the harness
down over your hips, no matter how hard you try. Children and narrow-hipped
adults -- if you can't get a harness to stay above your hip bones, use a
full-body harness until your body shape works with a waistbelt-style harness.
Be sure that there is at least 3 inches of webbing extending out of the
waistbelt buckle once it has been properly secured and doubled back.

Leg Loops -- Your harness leg loops should also be snug, but not so tight
that it causes discomfort. If they are an adjustable design, the webbing
straps should be long enough for you to double them back through their buckles
with at least 2 inches left over.

You should be especially careful when fitting a seat harness. If you choose
one that's too small, it will squeeze your hips and legs, reducing mobility.
If you choose one that's too large, the harness may slide up onto your lower
ribs, restricting your breathing. You should have between 1 and 3 inches of
clearance between the tie-in loops at your waist.

Buckling up and tying-in

Most harnesses use full-strength buckles to join the waistbelt. Read the
manufacturer's instructions carefully and learn how to use your harness and
the buckle correctly. If your harness and buckle are not secured properly, you
risk injury and possibly even death.

Most harness buckles must be buckled a certain way to be secure. Be sure
you follow the recommended procedure every time. In a high risk sport like
climbing, you never want to take short cuts. Short cuts and carelessness will
put your life at risk. Always double back all webbing straps through your
harness buckles. Under the impact force of a fall, webbing straps that are not
doubled-back can pull through buckles, causing you to fall out of the harness
altogether.

Remember that your harness is only as reliable as the knot you use to tie
yourself into it. Make sure you know how to tie into your harness correctly.
Read, understand and follow the manufacturer's instructions that come with the
harness. Be careful -- different styles have different tie-in procedures. It
is your responsibility to know how to use your harness correctly, along with
all of your other climbing gear.

Harness Care

Protect your harness from direct sunlight, heat and harsh chemicals like
bleach. Wash your harness in cool water with mild, non-detergent soap. Always
check your harness before you climb for frayed stitching, cuts or other forms
of damage.

Remember that your harness will not last forever. If you climb every
weekend, your harness should last a couple of years. The harder you climb and
the more often you fall, the weaker your harness will become. Replace your
harness whenever it shows signs of wear or damage.



Source: http://www.a1articles.com

The climbing frame comes of age in the UK

Children love to play outdoors, especially on swings and Wooden Climbing Frames. Playground accidents are one of the leading causes of injuries in children and small children under five are at an even greater risk. Ensuring the safety of your backyard and your play equipment is vital to your child�s well-being.

Most playground injuries happen when a child falls from the top of a slide or play set. A shock absorbing material should be used to build a protective surface at least six feet around the play area. Mulch or rubber chips are common materials used in playground surfaces. When using natural materials like sand or wood chips, choose types that have been filtered to remove glass, metal, or other harmful objects.

Accidents caused by swings are another leading cause of childhood injuries. Swings should be attached to a lightweight frame that is firmly anchored into the ground. The support beams for the swings should be sturdy enough to hold the swings while they are in use. Sometimes, the frame may need to be set in cement to avoid tipping the play set when the swings are used.

The swings themselves should have plenty of space between each other and the support frame. The play area should be planned to allow ample room for children to move around the play set without the risk of being hit by a child who is swinging. Select swings that are appropriate for the age of your child. It is recommended that children under age five, or up to 50 pounds, play on swings that include safety harnesses and raised backs.

Platforms, ladders, and other climbing features can pose safety hazards to children as well. Forts or tree houses are fun additions to children�s outdoor play sets, but should include sturdy railing all the way around to prevent falls. Space between railings must be less than 3.5 inches or more than 9 inches apart so hands, feet, and heads can not become trapped. Ladder rungs should follow these safety measurements too.

Ladders, rock walls, and other climbing features are safest when they are attached to the unit at an angle. Ladders that form a 90 degree angle with the ground create a bigger risk of falls, while a softer angle makes climbing much easier. Playground slides are best when constructed of durable plastic at least a quarter of an inch thick. Metal slides retain heat and can cause burns on little legs and hands.

Choose swings that attach to the play set with strong safety chain rather than fiber ropes to extend durability. Any ropes attached to the play set that are intended for climbing should be at least one inch thick and should be regularly inspected for fraying.

The play sets available from Adventure Playsets meet and exceed the recommended safety guidelines. Adventure Playsets use strong cedar 4 x 4 posts that are treated with a smooth, safe polyethylene coating. All components are attached with large bolts that will sit flush with the wood when properly installed.

Playground safety is most influenced by supervision and regular inspection of equipment. Make routine checks of the wood for cracks or signs of decay. Inspect hardware for looseness or protruding objects that may snag or scratch. Most importantly, establish playground safety guidelines for your children and make sure they are closely followed.


Source: http://www.a1articles.com

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Rock Climbing Areas in KY � Kentucky

At first glance, rock climbing in Kentucky may seem like a far fetched idea. Au contraire! Red River Gorge provides great rock climbing areas in KY.

Rock Climbing Areas in KY � Kentucky

Located in the Daniel Boone National Forest, the greater Red River Gorge area is over 26,000 acres. The Red River runs for approximately 20 miles through the area. The area around the river is rife with rock climbing opportunities with multi-pitch walls, boulders and climbing roofs to try out your over vertical technique. The Red River Gorge can be reached by car in about an hour from Lexington, Ky. Trails and camping are plentiful in the area, so you can make a weekend of your trip.

Rock climbing is permitted through most of the gorge, but a few areas are off limits. You can ask the forest rangers for a list, but you generally are barred from climbing or descending on any of the arches. Also, all routes are pre-set and rock climbers are forbidden to start new routes without getting permission first from the rangers. Sorry for the downer, but you don't want to get arrested.

When rock climbing in Red River Gorge, there are a few areas getting universal thumbs up. For traditional climbing, the following areas get thumbs up:

1. Pebble Beach

2. Sky Bridge Ridge

3. Fortress

4. Long Wall

These areas all have epic climbing routes with ratings all well above five.

Sport climbing presents an entirely different challenge and the Red River Gorge area meets it. Top areas include:

1. Global Village with multiple climbs

2. Military Wall

3. Roadside Crag

4. Pebble Beach

5. Sky Bridge Ridge

If you are new to the area, the best two spots to hit are Pebble Beach and Sky Bridge Ridge. Each offers a variety of climbs, which gives you the best opportunity to try out your technique and take on a few challenges.

There are other areas in Kentucky that offer solid rock climbing. The Red River Gorge, however, is the king of the mountain when it comes to rock climbing areas in KY.

Rick Chapo is with Nomad Writing Journals. Rock Climbing journals are the perfect Christmas gifts for him or her. Visit NomadJournalTrips.com to read climbing articles and stories.

Mountain Climbing � Preserve Your Experiences

Mountain climbing is a great way to escape the rat race and be one with nature. Alas, your mountain climbing experiences can fade with time. The best way to prevent this is to keep a mountain climbing journal for your adventures.

Mountain Climbing Journals

Take a minute to give some consideration to your most recent mountain climbing experience. What sticks out in your mind? Now think about the first time you ever went mountain climbing. Undoubtedly, you remember few things about the geography, people you went with, particular mountain climbing routes and spectacular views. The experiences you've forgotten are lost to time. If you keep a mountain climbing journal, this won't be the case.

There are famous instances of people keeping journals throughout time. Of course, Anne Frank's Diary is the best example. In her diary, Anne kept a running commentary of the two years her family spent hiding from the Nazis. While your mountain climbing experiences better be more lighthearted, keeping a journal will let you remember them as the years pass.

A good mountain climbing journal combines a number of characteristics. First, it should be compact so you don't have to take up unnecessary space for other things. Second, it should have a case to protect it from rain, spills and so on. Third, the journal should contain blank areas to write your notes. Fourth, the journal should contain cue spaces to remind you to keep notes on specific things. Cues should include:

1. Who you went mountain climbing with,

2. Where you camped and if you enjoyed it,

3. Who you met and contact information for them,

4. The geographic and weather conditions, and

5. Any unique things that occurred while mountain climbing.

6. The routes you took up the mountain and alternatives.

7. Any inside information provided by experienced locals.

At the end of the mountain climbing trip, you should be able to get the following from your journal:

1. Contact information for other climbers you met,

2. Enough detail to provide you or a friend with a guide if you climb the location a second time.

3. Memories to reflect upon years later, and

4. Something to pass on to your friends, children and grandchildren.

To get the most out of your mountain climbing journal, you should write in it just before you climb, as you summit and when you return. Doing so will give you an accurate picture of your thoughts throughout the climb.

Mountain climbing is a great way to commune with nature. Make sure to preserve the experience.

Rick Chapo is with Nomad Writing Journals. Mountain Climbing journals are the perfect Christmas gifts for him or her.

Climbing Journals � Preserve Your Climbing Experiences

Climbing is a great way to escape the rat race and be one with nature. Alas, your climbing experiences can fade with time. The best way to prevent this is to keep a climbing journal for your mountain, boulder and other climbs.

Climbing Journals

Take a minute to give some consideration to your most recent climbing experience. What sticks out in your mind? Now think about the first time you ever went climbing. Undoubtedly, you remember few things about the geography, people you went with, particular climbing routes and spectacular views. The experiences you've forgotten are lost to time. If you had kept a climbing journal, this won't be the case.

There are famous instances of people keeping journals throughout time. Of course, Anne Frank's Diary is the best example. In her diary, Anne kept a running commentary of the two years her family spent hiding from the Nazis. While your climbing experiences better be more lighthearted, keeping a journal will let you remember them as the years pass.

A good climbing journal combines a number of characteristics. First, it should be compact so you don't have to take up unnecessary space for other things. Second, it should have a case to protect it from rain, spills and so on. Third, the journal should contain blank areas to write your notes. Fourth, the journal should contain cue spaces to remind you to keep notes on specific things. Cues should include:

1. Who you went climbing with,

2. Where you climbed and if you enjoyed it,

3. Who you met and contact information for them,

4. The geographic and weather conditions,

5. Routes you tried and how far you made it, and

6. Any unique things that occurred while climbing.

At the end of the climb, you should be able to get the following from your journal:

1. Contact information for other climbers and people you met,

2. Enough detail to provide you or a friend with a guide if you climb the location a second time.

3. Memories to reflect upon years later, and

4. Something to pass on to your friends, children and grandchildren.

To get the most out of your climbing journal, you should write in it during climbing breaks or immediately after. Every climb is special, even if you just go down into a local canyon.

Climbing is a great way to commune with nature. Make sure to preserve the experience.

Rick Chapo is with Nomad Journals - Preserve the experience with writing journals for your travels. Read more articles and travelogues on NomadJournalTrips.com.

Rock Climbing � Preserve Your Experiences

Rock climbing is a great way to escape the rat race, live on the edge and get a heck of a view. Alas, your rock climbing experiences can fade with time. The best way to prevent this is to keep a rock climbing journal.

Rock climbing Journals

Take a minute to give some consideration to your most recent rock climbing experience. What sticks out in your mind? Did you go bouldering at Joshua Tree for the weekend? Now think about the first time you ever went rock climbing. Undoubtedly, you remember few things about the geography, people you went with and the particular rock climbing routes. The experiences you've forgotten are lost to time. If you keep a rock climbing journal, this won't be the case.

There are famous instances of people keeping journals throughout time. Of course, Anne Frank's Diary is the best example. In her diary, Anne kept a running commentary of the two years her family spent hiding from the Nazis. While your rock climbing experiences better be more lighthearted, keeping a journal will let you remember them as the years pass.

A good rock climbing journal combines a number of characteristics. First, it should be compact so you don't have to take up unnecessary space for other things. Second, it should have a case to protect it from the elements and so on. Third, the journal should contain blank areas to write your notes. Fourth, the journal should contain cue spaces to remind you to keep notes on specific things. Cues should include:

1. Who you went rock climbing with,

2. The nature and quality of the rock,

3. Who you met and contact information for them,

4. The geographic and weather conditions,

5. Any unique things that occurred while rock climbing,

6. The routes you took up the ice and alternatives.

7. The equipment you needed to make the climb, and

8. Any inside information provided by locals or other climbers you met.

At the end of the rock climbing trip, you should be able to get the following from your journal:

1. Contact information for other climbers you met,

2. Enough detail to provide you or a friend with a route guide if you climb the location a second time.

3. Memories to reflect upon years later, and

4. Something to pass on to your friends, children and grandchildren.

To get the most out of your rock climbing journal, you should write in it just before you climb and when you return. It is always interesting to see the different impressions you have before and after a climb. Was it harder than you thought or easier?

Rock climbing is a great way to commune with nature and spend a weekend. Make sure to preserve the experience with your rock climbing journal.

Rick Chapo is with Nomad Writing Journals. Rock Climbing journals are the perfect Christmas gifts for him or her.

Journal � Rock Climbs

Rock climbing is a great way to challenge yourself and get a heck of a view. Alas, your experiences can fade with time. The best way to prevent this is to keep a journal for rock climbs.

Journal � Rock Climbs

Take a minute to give some consideration to your most recent rock climbing experience. What sticks out in your mind? Did you go bouldering at Joshua Tree for the weekend? Hit Red River Gorge in Kentucky? Now think about the first time you ever went rock climbing. Undoubtedly, you remember few things about the geography, people you went with and the particular rock climbing routes. The experiences you've forgotten are lost to time. If you keep a rock climbing journal, this won't be the case.

A good rock climbing journal combines a number of characteristics. First, it should be compact so you don't have to take up unnecessary space for other things. Second, it should have a case to protect it from the elements and so on. Third, the journal should contain blank areas to write your notes. Fourth, the journal should contain cue spaces to remind you to keep notes about specific things on your rock climbs. Cues should include:

1. Who you went rock climbing with,

2. The nature and quality of the rock climbs,

3. Who you met and contact information for them,

4. The geographic and weather conditions,

5. Any unique things that occurred while rock climbing,

6. The routes you took and alternatives.

7. The equipment you needed to make the rock climbs, and

8. Any inside information provided by locals or other climbers you met.

At the end of a weekend of rock climbs, you should be able to get the following from your journal:

1. Contact information for other climbers you met,

2. Enough detail to provide you or a friend with a route guide if you climb the location a second time.

3. Memories to reflect upon years later, and

4. Something to pass on to your friends, children and grandchildren.

To get the most out of your journal of rock climbs, you should write in it just before you climb and when you return. It is always interesting to see the different impressions you have before and after a climb. Was it harder than you thought or easier?

Rock climbing is a great way to commune with nature and spend a weekend. Make sure to preserve the experience with your journal of rock climbs.

Rick Chapo is with Nomad Writing Journals. Rock Climbing journals are the perfectChristmas gifts for him or her. Visit NomadJournalTrips.com to read climbing articles and stories.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Rock Climbing: Start Local And Go Global

Many people are drawn to the sport of rock climbing because it allows them the opportunity to see the world from a unique vantage point. If you are a fitness buff who loves to travel, rock climbing can help you indulge your passion for exploration while you push yourself to reach your athletic goals.

People who fall in love with this unique sport often build their vacations around the opportunity to explore notable and exciting climbing routes, and more than one climber has traveled the world with the goal of reaching the highest peaks and enjoying the most stunning vistas on the planet. When you take up rock climbing as a pastime, you are opening up a whole new world of sightseeing possibilities.

If you are new to the world of rock climbing, the best thing you can do is gain skills in your region before you head out to more exotic locales. If you invest some time in improving your technique and becoming familiar with the tools of the trade before you hit the road, you will find you are ready to enjoy the challenges that unfamiliar terrain provides. Even if you don’t live in the midst of a stunning mountain range, with a bit of research you will probably be able to find several satisfactory climbing routes within a day’s journey, or at least close enough to be a plausible destination for a long weekend’s vacation.

If you start your rock climbing journey by finding some good routes and experienced climbers in your area, you can be sure you will be ready to make the most of the opportunities that will come your way when you do eventually travel to stunning foreign destinations.

Most veteran climbers agree that whether you are interested in “sport” climbs, which are usually short in duration and fairly easy to complete, or “trad” climbs, which are more challenging in terms of both difficulty and endurance, the ideal way to learn your way around the rocks is by following a leader who is competent and confident with climbing equipment and technique.

Some climbers are self taught, but trying to climb without an experienced guide often leads to injuries and mistakes that could easily have been avoided if a teacher had been present. A master climber can help you achieve your goals while making sure you are taking the necessary safety precautions at every step along the way.

Thanks to the Internet, finding a ready and willing climb leader is easier today than ever. Rock climbing message boards are popping up all over the world, and spending some time reading the information on these boards can be very beneficial for both novice and experienced climbers.

By posting on a popular climbing site you can find leaders in almost any region of the world, including yours. In addition to offering you the chance to link up with other climbers in your area, the athletes and hobbyists who frequent these websites can offer you tips on the best equipment, and firsthand accounts of what it is like to tackle the different routes in your area.

Gray Rollins is a featured writer for RockClimbingHelp.com. To learn more about rock clmibing techniques and rock climbing training, visit us.

Introduction to Mountain Climbing

Generations and generations of people have lived in the mountains all over the world. They have learned and mastered the ways of these mountains. These people have come to live easily in them and have developed techniques in order to move safely through and over them. These people are called "mountaineers" and this exercise of their skills is called "mountaineering". When these mountaineers climb a particular mountain with the aim of reaching its summit, they become "mountain climbers".

Mountain Climbing is actually just part of the wider adventure activity called mountaineering and for a long time, these two were practiced only because they were useful skills. Mountaineers used mountain climbing to rescue stranded people or strayed sheep. They used it for hunting animals in higher terrain. Mountaineers would also guide travelers over difficult and often high paths that they had to cross. However, they would never do it for the sake of adventure or for fun. This was because they thought that there were monsters and demons lurking in the higher peaks so they stayed away and lived as close to the plains as they could.

However in early Renaissance Europe, individuals started to venture into the mountains simply for the pleasure of it and sometimes as a sport. For instance, Petrarch wrote about his 1335 climb of Mont Ventoux in France as being exhilarating. Instead of being tired or terrified, he rejoiced in the mountain's hidden beauty, views and closeness to heaven. By 1786, these individuals started climbing in sizable groups. They started scaling higher and higher peaks and others were ambitious enough to climb the unclimbed peaks of Europe. In 1786, mountain climbing was given a boost as a sport in Europe with the successful ascent of the 15,781-foot Mont Blanc, the highest point in the Swiss Alps. By 1850, the Swiss Alps were regularly climbed by English climbers during their summer vacations. Because of this, the tradition of the trained and dedicated Swiss guides was established. These guides would go with expeditions that began to explore and climb the other great mountains of the world.

The first ever successful ascent of Mount Everest, the highest peak in the world, is probably the most famous climb in history. It was done in the year 1953 by a British expedition under the command of Colonel John Hunt. Two members of the expedition, Edmund Hillary who was a New Zealander and Tenzing Norkey who was a Sherpa (a Tibetan tribesman), reached the peak on May 29. 32 years before this colossal achievement, 11 attempts to summit were made and a lot of lives were lost. This included the great British climber George Leigh-Mallory and Andrew Irvine, his fellow climber. They were last seen heading for the summit of Mount Everest during their expedition in 1924.

Since the scaling of Mount Everest, the sport of mountain climbing has become more popular than before. Every year, more and more people are starting to climb and more expeditions are sent that try new routes to reach different mountain peaks. There is a growing list of countries making serious mountaineering efforts. The list includes, of course, the European countries that have actively participated long before. South American countries are also joining in. They compete with nations like India, People's Republic of China, Australia, Japan and New Zealand. Since mountain climbing is a sport that is practiced worldwide, all cities that have a mountain or a cliff in its area is sure to have a local mountaineering club where people can learn to climb safely and skillfully. These local clubs are often affiliated with their national counterparts. The Alpine Club of London is the oldest and most famous climbing club. In the United States, three of the most important clubs are the Appalachian Mountain Club, the Sierra Club and the American Alpine Club.



http://www.articlesphere.com/Article/Introduction-to-Mountain-Climbing/40914

Rock Climbing with Style – Bouldering and Indoor Climbing Gyms

If you are looking for an addictive outdoor sport, it is hard to top rock climbing. Once you try it, you will be hooked and looking for opportunities to go high.

Rock climbing may sound like the most basic of sports. Find something to climb. Climb it. How hard could it be? Well, there is more to it as tends to be true for most things that seem simple at first. When it comes to rock climbing, there are different styles for different folks. Let’s take a look at a couple.

Bouldering – Bouldering is perhaps the most popular form of rock climbing, although many would argue with that. The reason I suggest it is has to do with availability. Simply put, most people can find boulders somewhere relatively close to their home, which makes it a readily accessible option.

Bouldering is exactly what it sounds like. You look for ten to 15 foot boulders that you can climb. Once you are ready, you just climb them but you should do more. Since falling from a boulder is less dangerous than a cliff, a host of opportunities are presented to you. You can practice the basics to build up your technique and strength. You can also try new techniques since the risk of injury is minimized. All and all, bouldering is a great way to get your technique in order or try rock climbing for the first time. To prevent scrapes, it often helps to throw a mat down on the ground to cushion you when you fall.

Indoor Climbing – Indoor climbing represents another good way to practice your technique, learn new skills or just start out as a beginner. As mentioned above, it can be hard to find good climbing locations close to where you live. With indoor climbing, you have no such problem. In most major cities, there are now indoor climbing gyms. The gyms are all different, but many have fixed walls while others have rotating walls that change the terrain you climb. All are usually set with ropes to cut out some of the work. As a beginner, you can almost always get climbing lessons at the gyms, which makes them another great place to get started.

If you are looking for climbing options that don’t require you to travel, bouldering and indoor climbing gyms represent great options. Beginners can get the basic downs and old pros can work on technique and try new things.

John Grimes is with All Terrain - makers of natural products for the outdoors.

Ice Climbs Near Anchorage, Alaska

Alaska is the last great wild wilderness of America. It also happens to be a great place to have a go at some ice climbs that will make your legs do the Elvis.

Alaska is one of the few places remaining that you can visit and realize you are pretty insignificant. The state is huge and the human population centers are pretty small. Frankly, it can give you new perspective on life and the planet.

While going to Alaska is a great idea for rock and ice climbing, there are a couple of problems. Getting around the state can be…well, a bear. This is particularly true in winter when Mother Nature does her thing. You and bush planes are no match for her, so you often have to compromise your plans. If ice climbing is your thing, the good news is there are a lot of interesting climbs around Anchorage. Here are a few worth your time.

Portage River is located in a valley of the same name about an hour south of Anchorage. There are over 10 solid ice climbs in the area. They range from fairly simple to multi-pitch climbs, which means there is a little something for everyone. Before heading off to the area, make sure you get the current ice conditions. They can fluctuate. To get to Portage River, take the Seward Highway south and look for the signs.

The best climbing near Anchorage is really to the north of the city. The terrain is not really the issue. The difference between climbs to the north and south of the city has to do with the weather. Climbs south of the city tend to be in area where warm air can come off the ocean and degrade the ice. This doesn’t seem to be a problem in the north, but this also makes it a much more popular area. Yes, you may actually have to wait for some climbs.

Top climbs north of Anchorage include areas such as Eagle River Valley, Eklutna Canyon and the Knik River Valley. Of these, Knik River Valley is by far the most popular. There are lots of climbs and often lots of people. To explore the Knik River Valley, just head out from Anchorage to the town of Eklutna and ask for directions.

As you might imagine, Alaska offers some serious ice climbing opportunities. While getting around can be difficult in winter, flying into Anchorage should give you access to plenty of climbs nearby.

Rick Chapo is with NomadJournals.com - makers of ice climbing journals.

Be a Selector by taking part in Fantasy Cricket

Cricket is a game that has a huge fan following. So it is inevitable that the performance of all players and teams will be under immense scrutiny at all times. Selection of the team is one factor that has always been widely discussed and talked about by fans that are crazy about the game. Almost every other fan has a different opinion about the team selection. However all fans know that they will never have a say in the team selection. Fantasy cricket is an online game through which fans can select their own team and see them in action on the field.

By playing fantasy cricket, fans can actually put to test their cricketing skills. It is very easy to criticize the selection of a team, but having to select an entire team on your own is a very hard task. Unless you take part and play fantasy cricket, you will not be able to know exactly how difficult this is. That is not all; you can select players from all parts of the world and also see them in action against a team. Basically you will be able to select your dream team and also be in charge of the team.

The source for you to take part in a game of fantasy cricket is through the online websites that are dedicated to cricket. Many of these websites provide fans which the chance to take part in fantasy cricket. Fans will be given a list containing the best names in the world of cricket. What you will have to do is make a selection of eleven unique players from that list. The entire thing may sound to be very easy for you, buy you will realize how difficult it is to strike the right balance to select the final eleven.

One thing that you will have to keep in mind is the fact that you will be allotted certain points and you must manage your team within those points. Os if you have 100 points at your disposal, you must manage your team within that point. The budget point is the ranking point given to each player based on their performance. Remember randomly selecting players for your team will not do, you must make sure that the player you have selected to play fantasy cricket is an expert with the bat, ball or both.

Also you must choose one of the eleven players to be the captain of your team. At any time of the game, you have the option of modifying your team, by replacing players in the team. If you make a wise choice from the very beginning, you will not need to modify your team at any stage.

Just make sure that while selecting your team for fantasy cricket you do not get swayed by big names and end up choosing them in the team. The only basis for selecting players in your team must be performance. The final outcome of the game of fantasy cricket depends on the performance that the players put up on the field.

Ella Wilson is a cricket fanatic. She simply loves the game and tries to catch live action no matter where she is.At Stickiewicket she works on Online cricket score,live cricket score, Fantasy cricket and Cricket News among other things.You can see her works at www.stickiewicket.com