The Cleanest Line

Some stories to get you out there.

Voices for the Ocean
We protect what we love.
5:31
Watch
Vince Anderson Q&A
When Vince Anderson took a break from alpine climbing, his mountaineering attitude manifested itself in a single-speed hardtail, on which he’s won some of the sport’s most grueling races.
When Vince Anderson took a break from alpine climbing, his mountaineering attitude manifested itself in a single-speed hardtail, on which he’s won some of the sport’s most grueling races.
Jesse Selwyn
13 min Read
What the Trees Know: Solving the Mystery of Colorado’s Record Avalanche Season
In 2019, after a record Colorado avalanche season bulldozed millions of trees, a team of avalanche experts rallied to collect as much information as possible from these 300-year-old keepers of time.
In 2019, after a record Colorado avalanche season bulldozed millions of trees, a team of avalanche experts rallied to collect as much information as possible from these 300-year-old keepers of time.
Laura Yale
7 min Read
District 15
Justice for the most polluted neighborhood in Los Angeles.
23:05
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Saving Slickrock
The Slickrock Trail, in Moab, Utah, is one of the most popular mountain bike rides in the world. Now, under a recent BLM decision, it could also be opening to oil and gas drilling.
The Slickrock Trail, in Moab, Utah, is one of the most popular mountain bike rides in the world. Now, under a recent BLM decision, it could also be opening to oil and gas drilling.
Sakeus Bankson
5 min Read
The Song Remains The Same
On a winter’s morning in 1975, Burgie, the Land Cruiser, rumbled up the highway at the bottom of Provo Canyon in Utah’s Wasatch Range. Ice dripped from the steep rock walls and a warm southern wind blew softly. Jim Knight and Mark Ward approached the first pitch, known as the Apron. Dressed in blue jeans…
On a winter’s morning in 1975, Burgie, the Land Cruiser, rumbled up the highway at the bottom of Provo Canyon in Utah’s Wasatch Range. Ice dripped from the steep rock walls and a warm southern wind blew softly. Jim Knight and Mark Ward approached the first pitch, known as the Apron. Dressed in blue jeans…
Andrew Burr
3 min Read
I Found My Calling through Patagonia Action Works
 She was searching for a role with a nonprofit that takes a nontraditional approach to nature conservation. She found it in her inbox.
 She was searching for a role with a nonprofit that takes a nontraditional approach to nature conservation. She found it in her inbox.
Katarina Mulec
6 min Read
On Injustice
In September, millions of young people rocked global news cycles with the largest wave of climate strikes the world has ever seen. From the hills and hollers of Kentucky to the cities of the Rust Belt to the winding streets of San Francisco, young people walked out of class and work to demand bold action…
In September, millions of young people rocked global news cycles with the largest wave of climate strikes the world has ever seen. From the hills and hollers of Kentucky to the cities of the Rust Belt to the winding streets of San Francisco, young people walked out of class and work to demand bold action…
Naomi Hollard
8 min Read
  • Why the Clean Water Act Means So Much

    Prince Shakur / Activism

    Half joking and half serious, she’d say to us while smiling at our laughter, “You go into that water and you come out with another arm!”

    Photo: Peter Essick / Aurora Photos / Alamy
District 15
Justice for the most polluted neighborhood in Los Angeles.
23:05
Watch
I Found My Calling through Patagonia Action Works
 She was searching for a role with a nonprofit that takes a nontraditional approach to nature conservation. She found it in her inbox.
 She was searching for a role with a nonprofit that takes a nontraditional approach to nature conservation. She found it in her inbox.
Katarina Mulec
6 min Read
On Injustice
In September, millions of young people rocked global news cycles with the largest wave of climate strikes the world has ever seen. From the hills and hollers of Kentucky to the cities of the Rust Belt to the winding streets of San Francisco, young people walked out of class and work to demand bold action…
In September, millions of young people rocked global news cycles with the largest wave of climate strikes the world has ever seen. From the hills and hollers of Kentucky to the cities of the Rust Belt to the winding streets of San Francisco, young people walked out of class and work to demand bold action…
Naomi Hollard
8 min Read
Ryland Bell’s Chilkat Hideaway
Predawn on April 4, 2019. There’s hardly any snow in the mountains. Worst year in recent history, the locals are saying. We’re loading boxes of food onto the ferry, preparing to board the Alaska Marine Highway from Juneau to Haines. “It’s southeast Alaska, you never know,” Ryland Bell says. “It might rain for 90 days…
Predawn on April 4, 2019. There’s hardly any snow in the mountains. Worst year in recent history, the locals are saying. We’re loading boxes of food onto the ferry, preparing to board the Alaska Marine Highway from Juneau to Haines. “It’s southeast Alaska, you never know,” Ryland Bell says. “It might rain for 90 days…
Colin Wiseman
10 min Read
Why the Clean Water Act Means So Much
My family arrived in Ohio from Jamaica in the mid-1970s, during a time of environmental turmoil. The previous decade had brought to light significant issues around the treatment of land and water in the United States. The Cuyahoga River, which flows into Lake Erie, caught fire in 1969 due to excessive oil coating its surface.…
My family arrived in Ohio from Jamaica in the mid-1970s, during a time of environmental turmoil. The previous decade had brought to light significant issues around the treatment of land and water in the United States. The Cuyahoga River, which flows into Lake Erie, caught fire in 1969 due to excessive oil coating its surface.…
Prince Shakur
7 min Read
Out with the Old: Thinking about Newness
“To change someone’s behavior, there must be rewards,” says Lizzy Plotkin. Her voice is earthy, grounded, easy and full of conviction. Horns honk, people talk, buses drive and a city thrives in the background, but she doesn’t sound like part of the chaos; she is instead superimposed into the scene. We’ve never met in person,…
“To change someone’s behavior, there must be rewards,” says Lizzy Plotkin. Her voice is earthy, grounded, easy and full of conviction. Horns honk, people talk, buses drive and a city thrives in the background, but she doesn’t sound like part of the chaos; she is instead superimposed into the scene. We’ve never met in person,…
Molly Baker
7 min Read
A Most Endangered Law
A round of applause and a hurrah of thanks for President Donald Trump: he’s finally bringing the Endangered Species Act (ESA) the attention it deserves! Last fall, the president announced a number of administrative “rule changes” to the ESA, changes that may sound trivial, but which attack the intent and letter of the law. Trump,…
A round of applause and a hurrah of thanks for President Donald Trump: he’s finally bringing the Endangered Species Act (ESA) the attention it deserves! Last fall, the president announced a number of administrative “rule changes” to the ESA, changes that may sound trivial, but which attack the intent and letter of the law. Trump,…
Christopher Ketcham
7 min Read
Celebrate Bears Ears
Three years ago, on December 28, 2016, President Obama used his executive power under the Antiquities Act to establish the 1.35 million-acre Bears Ears National Monument. This was the first time that tribal sovereign nations allied to petition the president for a national monument designation. The Hopi Tribe, the Navajo Nation, the Ute Mountain Ute…
Three years ago, on December 28, 2016, President Obama used his executive power under the Antiquities Act to establish the 1.35 million-acre Bears Ears National Monument. This was the first time that tribal sovereign nations allied to petition the president for a national monument designation. The Hopi Tribe, the Navajo Nation, the Ute Mountain Ute…
Cassaundra Pino
8 min Read
  • Jen Shelton's FFFKT (Fastest Fish Fourteener Known Time)

    *Fastest Fish Fourteener Known Time

    Eric Bissell

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Staff Picks

The Climate Crisis Is a Human Issue
Thirty years ago this month, I published my first book, The End of Nature, which was also the first book for a general audience about what we then called the greenhouse effect. And my main worry was about … nature. In 1989, global warming was still a theoretical crisis—we were right at the edge of…
Thirty years ago this month, I published my first book, The End of Nature, which was also the first book for a general audience about what we then called the greenhouse effect. And my main worry was about … nature. In 1989, global warming was still a theoretical crisis—we were right at the edge of…
Bill McKibben
5 min Read
A Conversation with Regenerative Agriculture Pioneer Charles Massy
When he was 22 and away at college, Charles Massy got a fateful shock: His father had suffered a severe heart attack, and while it wasn’t immediately fatal, it was clear his dad could no longer run the family farm back home in the Monaro region of New South Wales, Australia. Within days, Massy had…
When he was 22 and away at college, Charles Massy got a fateful shock: His father had suffered a severe heart attack, and while it wasn’t immediately fatal, it was clear his dad could no longer run the family farm back home in the Monaro region of New South Wales, Australia. Within days, Massy had…
Brad Wieners
12 min Read
Dispatches from the Edge of the World: Making “Takayna” in Tasmania
The wind at the edge of the world comes in clean and cold. Without any significant landmass to temper its force, it rips across the 40th latitude and slams into the prefab houses that straddle the tiny seaside township of Arthur River where we’re staying. It strains against the windows and coats the logs stacked…
The wind at the edge of the world comes in clean and cold. Without any significant landmass to temper its force, it rips across the 40th latitude and slams into the prefab houses that straddle the tiny seaside township of Arthur River where we’re staying. It strains against the windows and coats the logs stacked…
Meaghen Brown
13 min Read
Lessons from Yosemite’s First Climbing Guidebook
Lessons from Yosemite’s first climbing guidebook “I have this idea,” Mikey texted last October. “Let’s climb all of the suggested routes from the Yosemite red-cover guidebook.” I agreed immediately. The tattered copy of A Climber’s Guide to Yosemite Valley arrived in the mail less than a week later. First published in 1964 by the Sierra Club,…
Lessons from Yosemite’s first climbing guidebook “I have this idea,” Mikey texted last October. “Let’s climb all of the suggested routes from the Yosemite red-cover guidebook.” I agreed immediately. The tattered copy of A Climber’s Guide to Yosemite Valley arrived in the mail less than a week later. First published in 1964 by the Sierra Club,…
Timmy O’Neill
5 min Read
Treeline: A Story Written in Rings
Quietly, patiently, trees endure. They are the oldest living beings we come to know during our time on earth, living bridges into our planet’s expansive past. Treeline is a film celebrating the forests on which our species has always depended—and around which some skiers and snowboarders etch their entire lives. Follow a group of snow-seekers,…
Quietly, patiently, trees endure. They are the oldest living beings we come to know during our time on earth, living bridges into our planet’s expansive past. Treeline is a film celebrating the forests on which our species has always depended—and around which some skiers and snowboarders etch their entire lives. Follow a group of snow-seekers,…
Laura Yale
5 min Read
Life of Pie: How Hot Tomato Pizza Unites a Mountain Biking Paradise
Friday night at the Hot Tomato is not for those in a hurry. Hungry customers grip pints of beer and compare notes on the day’s rides in lines that spill into the parking lot. Music pumps and the staff whirls behind the counter, tossing floury dough, yelling requests to the kitchen, giving each other shit.…
Friday night at the Hot Tomato is not for those in a hurry. Hungry customers grip pints of beer and compare notes on the day’s rides in lines that spill into the parking lot. Music pumps and the staff whirls behind the counter, tossing floury dough, yelling requests to the kitchen, giving each other shit.…
Diane French
4 min Read
A Painful Conversation with Skier and Hot Sauce Maker Carston Oliver
As seen in the November 2019 Journal. For the recipe behind Carston’s Spicy Magic Sauce, scroll to the end of the story. Although my tongue felt as if it might melt, Carston Oliver assured me I was not, in fact, going to die. “That’s just the capsaicin,” he told me, as he calmly ordered some…
As seen in the November 2019 Journal. For the recipe behind Carston’s Spicy Magic Sauce, scroll to the end of the story. Although my tongue felt as if it might melt, Carston Oliver assured me I was not, in fact, going to die. “That’s just the capsaicin,” he told me, as he calmly ordered some…
Sakeus Bankson
7 min Read
The Cleanest Line: Read the Story That Inspired the Name of This Blog
We are now third and fourth generation surfers. We have the confidence to leave the stereotypes behind. We have become a tribe that has the ability to be the scroungiest dirtbags one day and then return to the urban environment as activists for change the next. Two time periods epitomize the style and sensibility of…
We are now third and fourth generation surfers. We have the confidence to leave the stereotypes behind. We have become a tribe that has the ability to be the scroungiest dirtbags one day and then return to the urban environment as activists for change the next. Two time periods epitomize the style and sensibility of…
Chris Malloy
3 min Read
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