As floating debris from the 2011 Japanese tsunami continues to drift towards the west coast of North America, scientists have been following along and using it as a giant study project in ocean currents.

To help with the research The Ikkatsu Project is getting organized which will involve a group of kayakers setting out to document the flotsam as it begins to come ashore along the remoter parts of the Washington state coastline.

One of the project leaders, Steve Weileman sent me some information about it:

Between Neah Bay, at the tip of the peninsula, and Ruby Beach, at the southern end of the roadless section, lies approximately 60 miles of pristine Olympic coastline, much of it inaccessible to foot travel. It is here, on secluded pocket beaches surrounded by soaring sea stacks and intricate rock gardens, that the debris will make landfall.

Our team is composed of three experienced professional guides, each having a multi-year resume including multiple trips and expeditions to remote coastal environments. Ken Campbell has authored several books on Pacific Northwest kayaking and is a frequent contributor to print and online magazines on subjects relating to the outdoors and the environment. Jason Goldstein began his kayaking career in Christchurch, New Zealand and currently owns his own guide service as well, he works as a cartographer and GIS specialist. Steve Weileman is a documentary film maker and photographer, with previous experience in Newfoundland and Alaska, as well as numerous locations throughout the Northwest. Each of us brings a specific set of skills to the project and is looking forward to this unique opportunity to combine science and adventure.

You can find more information about The Ikkatsu Project on their website.

Flickr Photo Credit: Aerial view of debris following earthquake in Japan. / Official Navy Page / CC BY 2.0

Published in Environment

Following the earthquakes and tsunamis in Southeast Asia, the earthquake in Haiti, and the attacks on 9/11, the members of Outdoor Industry Association (OIA) responded with an amazing demonstration of support and provided critical supplies for emergency disaster relief.

OIA, working with AmeriCares, is once again calling on members to dig deep to support those areas devastated by earthquake and tsunami in Japan.

At this time, the Japanese government is not requesting external product and medical support. However, if you have local manufacturing facilities or affiliates in Japan and are interested in donating products in-country, AmeriCares can explore possibilities for matching what you have available with the current product needs, which include:

  • Blankets
  • Hygiene products
  • Heating pads

To donate these urgently needed products from locations within Japan or to make a financial donation to the relief effort, contact Henna Viinikka at AmeriCares at 203.658.9526 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Due to the amazing response from the nation, AmeriCares is having trouble replying to everyone in a timely manner, but they will respond. OIA will continue to publish updated needs throughout the relief effort.

Published in Press Releases

I recently stumbled upon an online shop based out of Japan that sells highly decorated sleeping bags. I don't read Japanese so I don't have a lot of information but what they are lacking in details is made up by overwhelming class and style.

Behold the Pharaoh sarcophagus mummy sleeping bag. Hands down the greatest looking piece of outdoor gear I have seen in years and shame on US manufacturers for not designing something this cool.

Pharaoh sarcophagus mummy sleeping bag

Also available is an anatomical sleeping bag that would be fantastic for making my arm muscles look way bigger.

Anatomical Sleeping Bag

If body organs and former dynasties are not your thing then you can pretend you are Jonah getting swallowed by a giant fish every time you go to bed.

Fish Sleeping Bag

They all are available for 6,090 Yen or about $75 US.

If you have ever wanted to see how sleeping bags are manufactured then today is your day. Ben and Josh from campinggeartv.com produced a great video of the manufacturing process when they recently made a pilgrimage to United States only remaining major sleeping bag factory in Haleyville, Alabama. The video is below.

Published in Funny

Japanese Coast Guard Dancing

If I get in trouble I really hope these guys come and save me but if they don't provide some pre-rescue entertainment, I’m going to be pissed.

Full video below.

Published in Funny

I have no idea about the science behind it but the video is pretty amazing.

In Japan they have developed a wave machine that can create perfectly shaped well, shapes including hearts, starts and even a musical note.

Published in Video

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