ARBOR SNOWBOARDS FILM NIGHT – COSA NOSTRA

Come one come all. Friday night, September 22nd U.S. Outdoor will be hosting Arbor Snowboards first feature length film, “Cosa Nostra.” The Arbor team has spent two years making this movie. This event is for all ages, so bring the family. Everything is free. D.J. Klavical will be spinning, beginning at 5:30 till the start of the film; and then after the film till the party ends. Three riders from Arbor will be here; Frank April, Mark Carter, and Erik Leon. Hang out and talk snowboarding. There will also be a photo gallery up on the wall that coincides with the movie. This free event is sponsored by Rainer. And don’t forget the giveaways. There is an Arbor/Rainier snowboard collaboration and a surfboard by Catch Surf that will be raffled off, just to name a few. Also, we will have happy hour deals throughout the store between 5:30 and 7:30, so feel free to check out the whole shop.

A word to the wise, get here early to reserve your camp chair with a Rainier beer in the convenient cup holder.

SMITH ROCK STATE PARK – AN INTRODUCTION

I first went to Smith Rock State Park in the late 1990’s. It is truly one of the most beautiful and unique places that I have ever seen. As with all things cool, it was born out of a volcanic eruption. 300 million years ago the eruption shot ash and debris into the air. When it settled Smith Rock was created. Then half a million years ago lava flowed into the area and hardened the rocks. Over time erosion and the Crooked River formed magnificent Smith Rock State Park.

There are many things to do in Smith Rock State Park. There is a first come first serve camping area with bathrooms and showers, and it’s vast 621 acres provides hiking and horseback trails. From these you can see massive amounts of amazing animals. There is a family of River Otters that live in the Crooked River. Mule deer, marmots(I took a quiz online and this is my Smith Rock spirit animal), lizards, and rattlesnakes all dot the landscape. If you look into the sky you will see bald eagles, canadian geese, northern harriers, ospreys, great blue herons, and one of the biggest birds of prey in North America, the golden eagle. But most come here for the climbing.

Smith Rock State Park

The thing I love about climbing is the adrenaline rush you get with minimal risk. I know, minimal risk you say; have you seen Cliffhanger with Sly Stallone. That scene where that woman’s harness buckle breaks and she plunges thousands of feet to her untimely death. No wonder Black Diamond was going to sue. That would never happen. Anyway, I’ll go climb, but I would never ride my bike downtown; too risky. It’s also relatively cheap to start climbing. All you need are some climbing shoes, harness, belay device, about five locking carabiners, fourteen quickdraws , a rope and rope bag, some chalk with a chalk bag, an anchor and a personal anchor. All this will run you about six hundred bucks. Small change for a new and exciting passion in your life. And if you live near Portland, Smith Rock is only three hours away.

US Outdoor employee Dan G. sport climbing Smith Rock

Smith Rock is the birthplace of sport climbing in the U.S.. Sport climbing is a type of climbing that relies on the use of permanent anchors, or bolts fixed to the rock for protection. You climb up the route, clip into the bolt with a quickdraw, clip the quickdraw to your rope and move up to the next bolt, and on and on. Alan Watts, the father of sport climbing, started climbing Smith back in the 1980’s. Back then there were only a small group of core climbers at Smith, now it has become a destination for climbing all over the world. One of the great things about Smith Rock is the diversity of places to climb and the amount of routes, there are close to 2000. Monkey Face, To Bolt or Not to Be, Five Gallon Bucket, Crybabies, and Just Do It, a 5.14c that at one time was the hardest sport route in North America, are just a few of the famous climbs of Smith Rock.

You can see why Smith Rock is a world renowned climbing destination. Which is why the American Alpine Club is having the SMITH ROCK CRAGGIN’ CLASSIC, a 3-day climbing festival at Smith Rock. It’s starts September 15th and goes to the 17th. It’s a celebration of climbing one of the great crags in the world. There will be food and beer, and you can stop by for some of the clinics taught by professional climbers. You should probably go before the beer. Two US Outdoor climbers, Alex H. and Dan G. will be there, you will be able to spot them by the US Outdoor shirts they will be wearing. Dan’s got a pretty impressive beard, and Alex, well, he’s pretty. So stop by the pop up tent, pick up some swag and talk to those guys about climbing. They know their stuff. And like I said, the beard.

Labor Day Weekend – Things to do in Oregon

Labor Day is fastly approaching, and for some of you it’s the last hurrah of the summer. So let’s go out with a bang.

Labor Day, or the working man’s holiday, was first proposed by labor union leader Peter Maguire in 1882. It was celebrated in New York City on September 5th of that year. It gained popularity across the nation in 1884, and in 1887 Oregon became the first state to legislate Labor Day as a holiday. I guess we really were Trailblazers. In 1894 Congress follow suit and declared the first Monday in September a legal holiday. Why the first Monday in September? It was halfway between Independence day and Thanksgiving. Clever. Oh, and by the way, you can’t wear white after Labor Day. This means you Michael. Here are some things you should consider doing Labor Day weekend.

Nothing says summer like floating the river. When I was a teenager every year we had the “Unboat Race” in August. It was the highlight of the summer. We would make the Unboat, which was basically a deck on inner tubes, the day and night before the race. Then at the crack of dawn we would haul it down to the river and put in. Boiled down, it was a great excuse to hang out with pretty girls in bikinis. I know, a little creepy, but give me a break here, I was a dork with a mullet, it was one of the few chances I had to hang out with girls.

There are plenty of places to float in Oregon, but you must have the basics. First, the float tube. You could go old school and get a dirty old inner tube, or you could up your game and get a float tube with a backrest and beverage holders like this one; Airhead Fiji Float Chair. For a bald guy like me I usually wear a booney hat to protect my dome from the sun, but when it’s hot out I end up taking it off. The resulting peeling on my head looks something like a reptilian/alien hybrid. Not pretty. You should bring along some sunscreen. Some type of water shoe is a must. You could wear a pair of old tennis shoes, but they fill up with water and tend to weigh you down. Flip flops would be gone a in minute. I prefer Chaco’s or Teva’s, they stay on your feet, have good traction, and work great in the water and on land. Plus you’ll look cool with the criss cross tan lines on your feet.

Sandy River

One of the best rivers to float is the Sandy. It’s close to Portland, slow and does not have a lot of rapids. There are many public beaches along the way and lots of houses, so you will have some company to give cheers to. The best route is Dabney State Recreation Area to Lewis and Clark State Recreation Site.

Clackamas River

The Clackamas River is a little more adventurous. It has more rapids than the Sandy, and it’s more secluded. The most popular launch is from Milo McIver State Park. Here you can float down to Barton Park or Carver Park.

Deschutes River

The Deschutes River is one of my favorite places to fly fish, and depending on where I am on the river I see a lot of people floating or rafting. Plus, if you launch in the town of Bend there’s lots of things to do, including visiting the many breweries Bend has to offer. This link will give you the skinny on floating the Deschutes from Bend. I know it’s cliche, but “Float On.”

TimothyLake

One of my favorite lakes in the Mt. Hood National Forest is Timothy Lake. It’s probably my favorite because I’ve actually caught fish here. It has everything to offer, including; camping, fishing, hiking, horseback riding, you get the picture. Plus it has an awesome view of Mt. Hood. Can I still say “Awesome”. When I was a kid we said “Rad”. Now I know I can’t say that.

Oregon State Fair

You could also head to Salem for the Oregon State Fair. It starts August 25th through September 4th. What can I say about the Oregon State Fair. Weird fried foods, plenty of adult beverages, and hoping you don’t blow chunks on one of the many rides they have to offer. There are also plenty of concerts. To name a few; Dwight Yokum, Joan Jett & the Blackhearts, Eddie Money, and if you want to relive the “Caddyshack” soundtrack, Kenny Loggins will be there. What I like about that movie besides the dancing gopher, are the names of the cast. Ty Webb, Al Czervik, Dr. Beeper, Judge Smails, and my favorite – Lacey Underall. And for the kids there are over forty carnival rides. There are also Pig Races, Mmmmm bacon, Pony Rides, and a petting zoo with a wide assortment of baby animals; deer, ducks, wallabies, and miniature donkeys. It wouldn’t be a state fair if there wasn’t a pie eating contest. Count me out. Remember that scene in the movie “Stand by Me”, boy that was rough. I know, two movie references in one blog, but indulge me. Anyway you should check it out.

-written by usoutdoor employee C.Tyrell

A Total Solar Eclipse – The Chance Of A Lifetime

In case you haven’t heard, on August 21st there will be a total solar eclipse that will march it’s way across the United States from Oregon to South Carolina. It will be the first time that has happened in 99 years. Pretty cool huh? What is an eclipse you ask? I’ll spare you all the nerdy talk about nodes, umbras, and penumbras; mostly because I don’t understand what they are, and give you the basics. A solar eclipse is where the moon’s shadow falls on the Earth, and a lunar eclipse is where the earth’s shadow falls on the moon. We’re talking about the upcoming solar eclipse.

This solar eclipse can be seen, at least partially, by everyone in North America. If you’re lucky enough to live here in Oregon there are many viewing options. Oregon Live has a great article 17 places to watch the 2017 solar eclipse around Oregon on the best places to view the eclipse. I’m going to view it in Portland(my wife has to work), where I’ll see 99.1% of the eclipse. If you live in the path of the totality, or you plan on traveling there, you’re in for a once in a lifetime spectacle.

Oregon path of totality.

Let me be clear, you will need special eclipse sunglasses Celestron Eclipse Solar Shades that stop 99.99 percent of the suns rays. Without these you can cause serious permanent damage to your eyes. The eclipse will start around 9:00 a.m. P.D.T., reaching totality around 10:15 am P.D.T. and leaving Oregon around 10:27 am, going on it’s way across the continent and ending it’s journey at the coast of South Carolina around 2:45 pm E.D.T. The path is approximately 70 miles wide and will be traveling 3,400 mph and slowing down to about 2,900 mph because by then it will be traveling higher in the sky. If you are in the totality, with the special eclipse glasses, you will see the shadow of the moon moving across the sun. This is what they call the “diamond ring effect.”

Diamond ring effect

After the “diamond ring effect” you are almost in totality. Then the phenomenon called the “Bailey’s Beads effect” will appear. Bits of light creeping through the various valleys, mountains and craters on the surface of the moon.

Baily’s beads effect

Then comes the totality. It only lasts around two minutes. Now you can take off your protective eyewear. The moon will completely cover the sun. Next you will see the corona, or the sun’s atmosphere. In that moment the birds will stop chirping and there will be a slight dip in the temperature. This is what you’ve been waiting for, the whole enchilada.

Total Solar Eclipse

Will seeing the totality change your life? Some people say it produces such a profound sense of awe that it changes your perspective on life forever. I for one am not hoping for an existential epiphany, after all I’m only going to see 99.1% of the eclipse. Maybe next time. However, this is the first legitimate excuse to have a beer in the morning in my life, and I’m going to take full advantage. I’m not saying I haven’t had a few pops in the morning, quite the contrary. In my college days when we had a 11:30 a.m. football game, my friends and I would throw back a few before we headed to the stadium. Go Cougs. The solar eclipse excuse is the ultimate.

So come on down to USOUTDOOR and get your eclipse sunglasses. It could change your life. Cheers.

-written by usoutdoor employee C.Tyrell

U.S. Outdoor Ski & Snowboard Demo Daze at Timberline Lodge

We may be holding this demo day on April Fools Day, but this is NO JOKE!
US Outdoor is holding a FREE ski and snowboard demo at Timberline Lodge. Come out and shred on all of next year’s equipment! We will be ready for you bright and early, but remember, BYOB (bring your own boots), and don’t forget to bring your buds for this sick Saturday on our favorite mountain. The last skis will be going out at 2:00 pm. REGISTER HERE

Who: Skiers and snowboarders
What: Ski & Snowboard Demo presented by U.S. Outdoor
Where: Timberline Lodge
When: April 1st, 2017 from 9am to 2pm
Why: See description above.

Volcom Holy Stokes! – A Real Life Happening (Premiere)

Stoking the fire is an action that Volcom is accustom to, so it is of no surprise that their skate team would spend time throwing down after black hammers on the proverbial stairway to heaven in the new Holy Stokes a Real Life Happening video. Join the Volcom crew at the Academy Theater, May 26th, for a screening of Holy Stokes a Real Life Happening in all of its 4K glory; yes, this was filmed entirely in 4K for your visual convenience. Check out the trailer below.

Click this link for additional information.

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