Every week, we bring you five gear-related stories, from all over, that you won’t want to miss. Here are this week’s highlights:
Cyclist Conquers the Pyrenees on a Fixie
On June 3, cyclist Patrick Seabase completed the first mountain stage of the 1910 Tour de France in the French Pyrenees—a 192-mile stretch with nearly 25,000 feet of climbing—on his fixed-gear bike, i.e. sans gears or brakes.
The journey took him 15 hours and 52 minutes. Red Bull made a beautiful short video documenting his journey.
“For the first time in my life, I had doubts as to whether I was good enough to complete this challenge, whether I would be able to achieve what I had planned,” says Seabase.
Study Sheds Negative Light on Maximalist Running Shoes
A pair of researchers from the National Running Center at Harvard University recently presented their findings from a study on the difference in impact forces when running in traditional running shoes versus “maximalist” ones, i.e. shoes with thick soles and heels that some manufacturers claim help attenuate the impact of running.
The researchers found that vertical impact loading was “significantly greater with the maximalist shoes than with the traditional ones”—and previous studies, they point out, “have established a correlation between vertical impact loading and injuries.”
Are Cube-Like-Shaped Tents Better?
A new generation of tents is ditching the dome paradigm in exchange for an all-new tent shape: a cube. Infinitely Wild took one to Yosemite—the ultralight, one-person, three-season Tensegrity 1 FL tent from Sierra Designs—to put the new design to the test.
Originally previewed here on Infinitely Wild, the Tensegrity earned a mixed review upon actual testing. Though the extra space was welcome and the pack size “impressively small,” the ultralight, single-wall construction led to some unwelcome condensation.
Twitter Reacts to MTB Manufacturer’s Sexist Wording
“Female cyclists do not generally need to push their limits, race against time and increase their adrenaline when riding rough downhill trails,” Czech-based bike manufacturer Superior recently proclaimed on its website of its MTB Lady range of bikes. “They just want to enjoy the time spent in nature on the bike … They look mainly for safe, easy and, of course, stylish bikes that have good and natural handling.”
It didn’t go over well with cyclists on Twitter. Cycling Weekly has a collection of responses, including this gem from @jaymeselbee: “Increasing your adrenaline when riding rough downhill trails is proven to make your uterus fall out #superiorbikes.”
Three Aussie Startups Bringing Surfing and Tech Together
With some 36,000 kilometers of coastline, Australia is fertile ground for surfing-related startups like Disrupt, Boardcave and Vader. This week, Mashable took a look at the ways in which all three fledging companies are working to upset the status quo.
Disrupt, for example, offers customers the option to design a 3D prototype of their ideal board—which, in about six weeks’ time, is developed into reality using a shaping machine. Boardcave, meanwhile, uses online formulas to develop individual profiles and make appropriate recommendations based on a customer’s age, weight, height, skill level and fitness.