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The Sunday Morning Chillax: Dads and Daughters Hike The Inca Trail

Machu Picchu early morning Inca TRail

Hiking the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, man, talk about the trip of a lifetime. My wife and I did a 7-day backcountry backpack trip in Peru in 2005 that connected with the Inca Trail, ending at Machu Picchu. But that was two years before we had our first child. Now I have two daughters, and though they're much younger than the girls in this video, I get awfully dewey-eyed watching this. Alex Bunn and Scott Booker are two dads who rolled 40, and planned an adventure trip together to hike the world-class four-day 26-mile Inca Trail—and they brought their young daughters along. This short film chronicles the trip in a way that's skillfully part documentary and part scrapbook. It's good.

Host a Foreign Exchange Student. You Will Not Regret It If You Live.

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On July 25, 2010 we used a half a roll of clear tape to fashion an absurd sign on four pieces of 8.5"x11" paper and Sharpie'd across it a giant "WELCOME ANIA" then sat around Terminal 2 at Sky Harbor Airport to wait for a flight to arrive from Washington D.C. that was delivering us a 15-year-old girl. That flight from D.C. was just a connection from Munich, which was just another connection from Kiev, and she'd gotten to Kiev on a five-hour train ride from her hometown.  This hand made sign, and a small compressed-for-web head shot photograph were the only items we had that could connect us with Ania.  So we stood there with that sign and waited.

It didn't take long. When we saw the young girl, her pale face, wide eyes and singular brown braid of hair displayed it all. She looked half frightened, thrilled and in disbelief all at once. We knew that was Ania. She knew it was us, and started laughing.

3 Volkswagen Vanagons and a Jetta: How One Family Built Their Westy Syncro

johns syncro vanagon westfalia on the beach in mexico, baja

You don't have to be all that offbeat to appreciate a Volkswagen Bus of any species.  Just a bit.

The window from 1985 to 1992 in the life of the VW Vanagon was a particularly splendid one - coinciding with the pinnacle of popularity of the mullet, that's when Volkswagen produced the full-time 4WD Syncro version. Drool. The really really killer versions were further refined by Westfalia, a German camper conversion company that installed the pop-top camper. Let's put it all together for accuracy, posterity and blatant SEO: Volkswagen Vanagon Syncro Westfalia. All those names . . . if it weren't for the pronunciation, you'd think it was Italian.

John Franzen, a Syncro owner, has a cool story about his van....

The Sunday Morning Chillax: Family Backpacking Trip in Ansel Adams Wilderness

chillax Ansel Adams Wilderness 001

In September of 2012, we brought home a fresh-out-of-the-ovenbaby girl. In the months since, I've really caught up on my television in the funkiest hours of the day. You wouldn't believe how many cooking shows there are. But one show's been a pleasant surprise, and not just because it's about the outdoors. Motion is the kind of program that you'll find on weekend mornings where host Greg Aiello takes some friends into the wilderness somewhere . . .

This Is How I Take a Shower In Camp

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Heading back to camp in the remote Utah desert south of Canyonlands after a long, hot, dusty day that included aimless hiking and scrambling around centuries old Pueblo ruins, one of my adventure mates sighed and goes, "I could use a beer and a shower. The beer we have." But, you see, we were out in Beef Basin and not coming back to Moab for another three days. The shower and his special one-of-a-kind stink was going to have to wait — or so he believed.

Climbing 35 Pitches on Your 35th Birthday

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This narrative from Arc'teryx follows a climber as he sets out to climb 35 pitches in a day (which ain't easy) on his 35th birthday, and reflects on all the things that make his life a beautiful one. And they're not all related to climbing, but universal: friends, family, hanging out with little kids, enjoying the company of a pretty woman, driving a dirt road, cooking camp coffee, swimming in a lake . . .

Infographic: Cool Facts About the Moon

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Photo by NASA

It's no wonder:while bike riding with my daughter one evening at dusk that she hollered at me, "Look at the moon!" It's fascinated humans since the dawn of it all, evidenced in thousands of things from ancient literature to the calendar that conducts our modern lives. It's up there every day . . .

Cool Find: Camelbak Bite Valve Replacements

camelbak valve replacement kids water bottle

To the blissfully ignorant non-parent, replacement bite valves for Camelbak bottles and reservoirs aren't worth the pixels to talk about. Why would they ever need to be replaced? But to you, me, and other parents the story is way different. Go ahead, raise your hand if your greasy, precious spawn haven't chewed right through a bite valve . . .

What It's Like to Be a Girl Growing Up On Hawaii's North Shore

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Raising little girls is a lot of fun, and I only know that because I have two daughters. Mine are young still, the oldest is just 5 years old. In this age of the internet it is so easy to show them all the possibilities of the crazy cool things they can get involved in, or the people they can grow up to become . . .

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