Issue 111 | Sulawesi

Plus: Searching for spirit bears, paddling controversies and more.

 

 

 

In partnership with

This week’s issue is sponsored by Dollar Flight Club. Save up to $500 on your next adventure without lifting a finger. 

 

 

Happy Friday! This is Adventure Fix, the weekly email for people who know that challenges are real but limitations are a choice.

Here’s what we've got for you today:

  • Wildlife Experiences: Searching for spirit bears

  • Scuba Diving: Sulawesi

  • Film: Up and Down - New Zealand’s longest hiking trail

  • Natural Wonders: Death Valley’s sailing stones

 

 

WILDLIFE EXPERIENCES

Searching for spirit bears in British Columbia

Photo: Jack Plant - Spirit Bear Lodge

The densely forested remote islands along the wild northwest coast of Canada are home to one of the rarest creatures on earth — the spirit bear.

This majestic animal, scientifically known as the Kermode bear is a white-coated variant of the black bear, almost exclusive to this rainforest.

Seeing one in the dark, dense, moss-draped old-growth forest is no easy task but if you’re up for sitting in torrential rain, waiting patiently, you might just get your chance.

As you step foot in the Great Bear Rainforest, a sense of tranquility envelopes you. Towering ancient trees, cascading waterfalls, and mist-shrouded mountains create a stunning backdrop for this wildlife haven.

Suddenly, a glimpse of movement catches your eye—a spirit bear is silently foraging along the banks of a salmon-filled creek.

Mesmerized, you observe the spirit bear's gentle demeanor and unparalleled fishing skills as it plucks salmon from the rushing waters.

These majestic creatures play a crucial role in maintaining the balance of the Great Bear Rainforest, dispersing seeds, and regulating salmon populations. They are guardians of this fragile ecosystem, embodying the interconnectedness of all living beings.

Explore more:

 

 

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SCUBA DIVING

Sulawesi: Scuba diving the Golden Triangle

Photo: Peter Löseke

If you love strange sea creatures and diving in warm clear water that’s full of life, head to Northern Sulawesi.

Bunaken Marine Park is where you’ll find the area’s top dive sites. As the boat approaches the park, the lush hills of the island and the towering silhouette of Manado Tua, an active volcanic cone.

Underwater, you’ll be immediately captivated by the kaleidoscope of coral formations that blanket the seabed. Elaborate coral gardens flourish here, their delicate branches sheltering a vibrant tapestry of fish species.

The black sands of Lembeh Strait are renowned as a macro photography paradise, where skilled divers can encounter some of the ocean's most peculiar and elusive creatures.

The hunt for the mesmerizing mimic octopus, the quirky flamboyant cuttlefish, or the intricate patterns of the ornate ghost pipefish becomes a thrilling quest in these dark, volcanic sands. Some of these creatures are so tiny that you’ll have to use a microscope to see them.

Explore more:

 

 

FILMS

Up and Down: New Zealand’s longest hiking trail

Photo: Dylan Moron

Here’s one for your weekend movie night.

Up and Down is a short but captivating film that takes us on a journey along the Te Araroa Trail - an 1860 mile (3000 km) hiking route stretching from Cape Reigna at the top of New Zealand’s North Island all the way down to Bluff at the bottom of the South Island.

What makes this trail special is its diversity, from sub-tropical rainforests and urban environments to volcanoes, rivers, and mountains.

The film beautifully captures the stunning landscapes of New Zealand, showcasing its mountains, lakes, beaches, and forests. With immersive cinematography and a captivating soundtrack, Up and Down will transport you to the heart of this remarkable country.

 

 

NATURAL WONDERS

Death Valley’s sailing stones

Photo: Chris Olivas

In the heart of California's Mojave Desert lies a natural phenomenon that has baffled scientists and intrigued visitors for decades—the Death Valley sailing stones.

This enigmatic occurrence takes place on the vast expanse of Racetrack Playa, a dry lakebed nestled within the rugged landscapes of Death Valley National Park. Here, under the scorching sun, large rocks seemingly glide across the desert floor, leaving behind mysterious trails in their wake.

The sailing stones, also known as "moving rocks," range in size from a few pounds to several hundred pounds, and sit atop the flat, cracked clay surface of the playa. What makes them extraordinary is that they appear to travel considerable distances on their own, leaving long tracks behind them.

For decades, the origins of this remarkable phenomenon remained a mystery, inspiring all kinds of theories and speculations. It wasn't until fairly recently that scientists were able to unravel the secret behind the sailing stones.

Explore more:

 

 

QUICK FIX

Interview: Christian Vizl - Black and white underwater photographer who tells stories of beauty at depth.

Soundscapes: Relaxing sounds of a rainy morning in Borneo’s rainforest

Good news: How the economy of nature is bringing back life in Patagonia.

Debate: 10 of backcountry paddling’s most controversial topics.

Listen up: Why are there giant megaphones inside this remote Estonian forest?

 

 

THE COMPASS

Where in the world

Photo: Jinyi He

Wanna flex your adventure geography skills? Guess where this pic was snapped!

Stumped? No worries. The answer is at the end of this email.

 

 

QUOTE OF THE WEEK

“In the wild there is an element that cannot be seen, tasted, heard or smelt – it can only be felt, and it is a feeling of enchantment.”

Richard Hall - Dark Forest, Deep Sea

 

 

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Tell us about you. What’s your next trip? What was your favorite one? We can’t wait to hear about your adventures.

Hit reply and tell us your story.

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-Amanda & Antonio

The team behind Adventure Fix

Sailing around the West Indies in the Caribbean.

 

 

 ANSWER: Mount Bogda on the Danxia landform - China