Editor's Letter | The Edge Issue - May 2017
This month's issue is all about pushing boundaries
It’s a cliché as old as the hills to say that adventure sports are all about “living on the edge". A cliché so old in fact, that before I even knew what adventure sports were I remember reading it on one of those naff nineties No Fear posters on a friend’s bedroom wall. You know the ones with the disembodied red eyes, a picture of snowboarder, and a slogan saying something like: “If you’re not living on the edge, you’re taking up too much space."
Of course no-one would dream of talking about “living on the edge" these days (although the worrying prevalence of the word “edgy" in wanky brand descriptions is almost as bad) but pushing boundaries is still very much part and parcel of the activities we love.
“Out here on the edge of civilisation even small mistakes can cause big problems," he writes.
This month’s issue includes an interview with Jossi Wells the freeskiing star, who recently found himself way out of his comfort zone when he joined forces with the Flying Frenchies for their latest film. This Gallic collective of base jumpers, slack-liners and wingsuiters quite literally roped him in to help out with several of their crazier stunts, an experience that he told us was enjoyable and scary in equal measure. “People say because I’m a skier and do big jumps I must not be afraid of heights but it’s very different when you’re hanging out there on top of the highline. It was terrifying!"
It’s not just mental boundaries that get pushed by adventurous experiences of course - more often than not it’s geographical boundaries as well. This month’s issue includes the story of an incredible snowboarding mission to the far north of Russia where, in a secret spot beyond the Arctic circle, Jurgen Groenwals rode slopes that had never been touched by skis or snowboards before. His trip, while incredible, also contained its fair share of worrying moments. “Out here on the edge of civilisation even small mistakes can cause big problems," he writes.
Deputy Editor James Renhard meanwhile visited another outlier destination, albeit one that’s marginally less scary and considerably less cold. His journey to Florida Keys revealed a fascinatingly different community living on the southern tip of the United States - one that barely considers itself to be part of the same country.
This month’s issue also includes the incredible story of a motorbike journey through the wilds of northern Myanmar. Exploring the Burmese Himalayas, Andrew Benfield found a people who live on the periphery in every sense of the word, a people who are all too often neglected by both the government in Naypyidaw and the international community.
Elsewhere in our May issue we look at people who are pushing boundaries creatively, interviewing legendary skateboard photographer Mike Blabac about what keeps him coming back to the sport, and profiling artist and travel blogger Paperboyo for our Adventure-gram series.
In fact, although we’d never put it that way, this issue is all about people who could be described as “living on the edge", whether it’s physically, mentally, geographically and artistically. So perhaps the old cliché is true after all. Now where did I put those baggy No Fear jeans…
Enjoy the adventure
- Tristan, Editor-in-Chief