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Man pushes peanut up mountain with nose… and he isn’t the first!

Photo: City of Manitou Springs

A wrap of the biggest stories and best writing about the outdoors from New Zealand and around the world.

In an extraordinary feat of patience and physical exertion, a man has managed to scale a 4302m mountain on his hands and knees while pushing a peanut with his nose.

Bob Salem achieved the bizarre accomplishment on Pikes Peak in the Rocky Mountains to celebrate the 150th birthday of Manitou Springs – the city at the foot of the mountain.

Amazingly, he’s the fourth person to do this – the first being Bill Williams in 1929 who won a $500 bet in the process. But Bob broke the record for the quickest time, doing it in just seven days.

He reckons he went through nearly two dozen peanuts on the way up, as some disappeared into cracks in rocks. He also did most of it at night, as there were fewer distractions in terms of heat, views and chatting to people. Read more here

“They’re the biggest avalanches I’ve ever seen at Mt Cook”

The clouds have cleared after the heavy rains at Aoraki/Mt Cook Village to reveal some colossal avalanches.

Tai Naka, a Mountain Safety Council representative told Stuff that these are ‘size four’ avalanches caused by heavy snow followed by heavy rain.

“They’re definitely big enough to destroy buildings and definitely the biggest avalanches I’ve ever seen at Mt Cook, but I’ve only been here six years,” he said.

“I think it’s a historical weather event, and it shows what we know already, that avalanches can come down well below the snowline. A lot of people don’t realise that, and it’s important for them to be aware of it.” Read more at Stuff.

Remembering the Sledge Track “yeti”

The tramping community are sad to lose one of its most committed people. Ian Hector Argyle built the Sledge Track – a popular trail near Palmerston North, which was opened by then Prime Minister Helen Clark in 2003.

And he was also responsible for numerous other trails in the region, including the Burttons Track near Levin (also opened by Clark) and the Makahika Track that connects to it.

Outdoor enthusiasts in the region will always be thankful to Argyle for creating a wilderness playground, and for showing others what can be done with a ‘can do’ attitude. Read more at Stuff.

We recently profiled Ian in the magazine – you can read the article here.

Catlins coast walk isn’t going to happen

That’s the sad realisation for those keen to create (and walk) a long-distance trail along this beautiful stretch of coastline.

It’s not due to a lack of support from the public either, but rather a lack of interest from landowners whose support is essential for any such trail to get off the ground.

The dream to build a track from Papatowai to Kaka Point was first proposed 20 years ago, but research has shown that the hurdles to such a plan are too great.

The focus now is to try and develop shorter guided walk options with interested landowners. Read more at the ODT

Would New Zealand benefit from a ‘quiet trail’?

Taiwan certainly seems to. The Cuifeng Lake Circular Trail is the first in the world to have been given ‘quiet trail’ status. This means those walking it need to shut up!

The concept has been created by the US-based Quiet Place International (QPI), which recognises the importance of preserving tranquillity.

Sound recordist Laila Fan told CNN Travel: “Silence doesn’t mean there is nothing there. On the contrary, there is already something there, but we never pay attention; we never really listen.” She referred to the calling frogs, humming insects and rustling leaves as things people will hear if they talk less and listen more.

In order to meet QPI standards, no more than one human sound should be heard over a 15-minute period. Read more here