If It Scares You, Do It: Rappelling Is Within Reach

first_imgWhy limit your outdoor experiences to the familiar hiking trails and hanging in a hammock? The stunts you see outdoor pros pull off on TV are within your reach once you make the decision to attack a new experience.For those who want some on the edge fun, nothing quite compares to the experience of making your way down a tall cliff or rock face while depending on the rope, carabiners, and your own inner strength. Rappelling is a rite of passage within the climbing community and is a great way to return to the base of a mountain after a climb or hiking experience that involves a descent elevation gain and can be enjoyed by people of all skill sets.Petit Dru, the peak where rappelling was first attempted.Photo by camptocamp.orgThe creation of the adrenaline filled experience is credited to Jean Estéril Charlet, a French climber based in Chamonix. Rappelling or abseiling (as it is know in the rest of the world), was first practiced while Charles made his descent from the Petit Dru, a sharp peak in the French Alps in 1876. By the turn of the century, rappelling gained in popularity throughout the climbing world. Climbers from all over the world tried taking the idea and developing it even further. Successfully doing so, Otto Herzog, a German climber and inventor first introduced the use of carabiners to the sport in 1911.Since that time, rappelling has transformed the outdoor recreation world with many different variations of knots, harnesses, and techniques tailored for different types of terrain. Three main types of rappelling practiced today are the standard rappel where a person’s back faces the ground with face up while descending a ledge. A free rappel is a technique often practiced by covers where a person’s body is suspended in open space while they slide down the rope to solid ground. Lastly and certainly not least is the Australian rappel that puts a climber to the ultimate test of facing downward while making their descent.Rapelling is now used as a military training technique, a means to rescue people, and amongst many other purposes it is also a recreational pursuit for thrill seekers and those wanting to branch out a bit, putting their fears and limits to the test.Defying your brain’s normalized laws of gravity, rappelling successfully and with much control can involve putting your body at a 90 degree angle and walking down a massive steep rock backwards. Scary as it may seem, many who have tried it can only seen to boast on how exhilarating the adventure is from start to finish. Like many outdoor pursuits, rappelling can happen just about anywhere from the side of a building to a mountaintop. A specific location that is popular in many guided rappelling and climbing adventures is waterfalls both as their waters are rushing in the warmer months and while frozen in the winter.For an immersive adventure on the edge without the costs of buying your own gear, you can give it a try on a guided trip on your next vacation or right near your home within the Blue Ridge Mountains. Many guided trips will assist you in your journey by providing gear, transportation, instruction, guides and sometimes even meals for a pretty fair price. An excursion of climbing and rappelling beginning at 9:30 a.m. and ending at 4 p.m. for an individual who is a beginner and over the age of 10 near Grandfather Mountain in North Carolina goes for $129. When factoring in the thrills with the views you would have combined with the comfort of knowing you are with practiced professionals that will keep you entirely safe, that’s not too bad!The saying goes, “If it scares you, do it.” So maybe this summer is the summer of chasing after a new adventure like rappelling. If there’s one guarantee in going after an experience like it, it’s that you won’t go home unchanged. For some tips and techniques to get started off in the world of rappelling, check out this article from Climbing Magazine and view the video below produced by REI.last_img read more

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Farmers can “Recover, Renew , and Innovate” at the IN Expo

first_imgIndianapolis, IN–The Indiana Farm Equipment and Technology Expo, presented by American Family Insurance, has announced the theme for the show that will take place December 17-19, 2019 at the Indiana State Fairgrounds. “Recover, Renew, and Innovate” will be the focus of the 41st annual show which is expected to draw upwards of 5,000 farmers. “This has been an extremely difficult year for most farmers, and most are looking for things to improve in 2020. We felt that focusing on recovery, renewal, and innovation is the best way to help them get ready to head into a new growing season,” said Gary Truitt, the show’s president.The free, daily, seminar program and the live demonstrations on the exhibit floor are all designed to provide attendees with encouragement, improved management and marketing skills, and innovative ideas and technology to increase and improve production and profitability. The event also provides an opportunity for farmers from across the state to gather, network, share experiences, and encourage each other.American Family Insurance is the presenting sponsor for the event and will have agents from around the state at the show to meet with farmers and help them with a variety of insurance needs. Other features of the show include a workshop on commercial hemp production, a financial management workshop, a grain marketing seminar, a weather and market outlook, certified applicator training, and a roundtable with past and present state and national ag leaders to discuss future policy direction for agriculture.The 140,000 square feet of exhibit space in the West Pavilion of the Indiana State Fairgrounds will be filled with the latest production technology in farming and with many cutting-edge products that are just hitting the market. From Big Iron to innovative algorithms, the 2019 Indiana Farm Equipment and Technology Expo will provide producers with just what they need to recover, renew, and innovate.Admission to the show is free. Pre-registration is recommended and can be done quickly at https://indianafarmexpo.com/. Exhibitors interested in securing space at the show should contact show manager Toni Hodson at  800-876-5133, x280.  The Indiana Farm Equipment and Technology Expo is a joint venture of MidCountry Media and Hoosier Ag Today, two of the leading agricultural media organizations in the state.last_img read more

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Broward School District Clears Parkland Administrators Despite Investigation Noting Failures

first_imgAs questions continue in the aftermath of the Parkland school shooting, the Broward School District recently cleared administrators at the school, even after an outside investigator blamed them for several procedural failures contributing to the 2018 massacre.A committee of district administrators did not find just cause on May 7 to discipline Ty Thompson, who was principal of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School at the time of the shooting, or Assistant Principal Denise Reed. Both individuals were reassigned from the school last year.Jeff Morford, another assistant principal at the school who has retired, was also cleared of most of the allegations against him.However, he was given a letter of reprimand for mishandling a 2016 threat assessment of the student who would kill 17 people and injure another 17 on Feb. 14, 2018.Records obtained by the Sun Sentinel show that attorney Jennifer Ruiz, whose firm was contracted by the district to conduct a review, accused Thompson of failing to adequately supervise school employees.“The evidence shows that Mr. Thompson delegated away many of his own responsibilities or duties to his assistant principals, but failed to implement any type of system to oversee compliance,” she wrote.Ruiz adds that Reed and Morford botched the killer’s threat assessment, and that Morford also ignored various warning signs and provided testimony lacking credibility.A statement from Kathy Koch, the district’s chief communications officer, said Ruiz’s role was to research and present facts, which was was done “comprehensively and thoroughly.”Koch adds that the decision to determine whether there was cause for discipline was up to the committee.“The committee concluded there was not just cause,” the statement goes on to say.Lisa Maxwell, who represents the three administrators as executive director of the Broward Principals and Assistants Association, responds, “The investigator had no idea of how any of the processes actually work. All she did was try to be a rubber stamp for the statewide commission, and she failed miserably.”She described Ruiz as a “lawyer from Miami with no background in investigations, absolutely zero understanding of how schools operate.”Ruiz also completed investigations of Assistant Principal Winfred Porter and Security Specialist Kelvin Greenleaf.In the end, she found no cause to discipline Greenleaf. However, she determined that Porter, who oversaw the school’s security, failed to ensure staff knew how and when to activate emergency Code Red lockdown procedures.The Professional Standards Committee also overturned that recommendation and cleared Porter.The only employees who ended up facing any severe discipline were two security monitors whose contracts were not renewed in June 2018.The full investigation into Ty Thompson is available here. Notes from the Professional Standards Committee can be found here.The investigation of Denise Reed has three parts. Read Part 1, Part 2 or Part 2 supplement. Notes from the Professional Standards Committee can be found here.The investigation of Jeff Morford has three parts. Read Part 1, Part 2 or Part 2 supplement. Notes from the Professional Standards Committee can be found here.The full investigation of Winfred Porter is available here. Notes from the Professional Standards Committee can be found here.The full investigation of Kelvin Greenleaf is available here. Notes from the Professional Standards Committee can be found here.last_img read more

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