California Surfing & Climbing In The Fifties



Tom Adler publishes beautiful photography books. I own almost all of them. They are limited edition gems that visually chronicle the culture of surfing through the eyes of a particular photographer like Don James, Jeff Divine, or Ron Church, or though a particular surfer like Miki Dora or Tom Blake. His books are curated like time capsules, and designed to appeal not just to surfers, but anyone who appreciates beautiful books, photography and design.

But Tom Adler also designs and publishes beautiful books on climbing. A couple of years ago, I stumbled upon “The Stone Masters”, a gorgeous coffee table book on the California climbing scene in 70’s, and was surprised to see it was a Tom Adler book. It was typically distinctive in its contrasting juxtaposition of portraits, action, details, landscape and candid snapshots, but I had no idea his passion for the culture, photography and visual history of sport included climbing. This was not his only book I learned on the subject. There was also “Yosemite In The Sixties”, a compilation of magnificent black and white photographs by Glen Denny, capturing the famous climbing scene of Yosemite Valley’s Camp 4 in its heyday. It left me wondering what the connection was for him with these two sports.

Tom Adler has made the connection for us in his newest book, “California Surfing And Climbing In The Fifties”, which brings these two sports together in one photographic tome. I recently had the opportunity to speak with him and asked about the common thread between these sports in that era. “The late 50’s were a pivotal point in both climbing and surfing”, he told me. “Equipment was changing dramatically in both sports, and with that came first ascents in Yosemite, while at the same time, new key breaks, like Pipeline and Waimea, were being surfed in Hawaii.”

There are indeed similarities in the lifestyles of these two sports. As Yvon Chouinard, founder of Patagonia, writes in the foreward, “The fifties were the easy years in California. Gas was a quarter a gallon, used cars could be bought for twenty-five dollars, and you could easily live off the excess fat of society. Those of us in the counter cultures of climbing and surfing were, as climber Pete Sinclair said, the last free Amercians.”

There were maybe a thousand surfers worldwide in the fifties, and equally few climbers — kindred spirits living the same non-conformist lifestyle, some on the rocks of Yosemite, others on the beaches of southern California. Be it surfing or climbing, their bohemian lifestyles created common counter cultures, rich in visual stories that are the perfect material for a Tom Adler artbook.



The Outdoors Inside


Image Map


While winter keeps us indoors and we long for the scents of the outdoors, candles infused with the fragrances of ocean breezes, pine forests, dewy meadows, citrus groves and flower fields transport us back to the warmer days and sultry nights of summer.

ROW 1: LE LABO “PIN 12”. Aromatic pine woods are mixed with musks and amber; RED FLOWER “ITALIAN BLOOD ORANGE”. A bright blend of sweet orange blossoms, tangy juice and sharp spicy rinds; SCENTS OF LAND “NO. 78 CEDAR”. Fragrant cedar, rich in scent like a rainy forest.

ROW 2: LINNEA’S LIGHTS “WOOD”. A sweet and musky sandalwood candle contained in a bark-covered vessel; BONNY & BLITHE “LAVENDER”. Fresh lavender fragrant with the scents of a misty meadow; LAFCO “SEA & DUNE/BEACH HOUSE”. Fresh and airy with summer scents of sea grass and ocean breezes.

ROW 3: TATINE TISANE “FIELD OF GRASS”. Scents of freshly cut grass reminiscent of lazy summer afternoons; MALIN+GOETZ “VETIVER”. A subtle synthesis of fruit and citrus at the top, clove leaf in the middle, cedarwood and vetiver at the bottom; ARCHIPELAGO BOTANICALS “BAMBOO TEAK”. A bamboo garden infused with violet leaf, oak moss, teak wood.

ROW 4: PADDYWAX MASON JAR CANDLE “OCEAN TIDE + SEA SALT. The scents of the sea are poured into this aqua jar; VOTIVO RED CURRANT. One of the most popular candles in the world, exuding the rich fragrance of the red currant berry. DIPTYQUE BAIES. Another all time favorite, with the scents of roses and blackcurrent leaves


Snow Day




Leather and suede, shearling and faux fur lined, with sexy lace ups and wrap around style, our favorite snow boots of the season have that chic apres-ski look. Rugged, waterproof and warm, these furry friends can handle the snowiest conditions and will have your feet wishing that everyday was a snow day.

CLOCKWISE TOP LEFT: THE NORTH FACE KINLEY $120. Cushioned, waterproof, and warm with Heatseeker™ insulation, these furry boots have the protection and traction needed for winter’s toughest conditions; ISABEL MARANT NOWLES $840. Shearling lined with a concealed wedge heel, these chic little snow boots will keep your feet warm with a touch of urban style; MERRELL DECORA PRELUDE $200; Waterproof with lightweight, low bulk insulation, these boots feature a contoured foot frame and air cushioned heel for all-day comfort. Full lace up and faux fur collar add extra style to this tough boot. SOREL JOAN OF ARCTIC $150. These seasonal favorites in chic black leather with faux fur cuff and red lace ups, are seam sealed waterproof and proven warm; SPERRY TOP-SIDER HIGHLAND $150. Duck boot style, these waterproof boots feature Thinsulate™ insulation, a cushioned insole for all-day comfort, and a wraparound lacing system for a secure fit and stylish look.


The Holiday Silver





ROW 1: BOGNER FIRE & ICE LEONY-D DOWN JACKET $569. Both on the slopes and in town, you are guaranteed to turn heads in this chic racer style down jacket. Refined cigarette quilting on the sides makes for a sporty and flattering fit; NIKON 1 AWI $799. When it’s time to move on from the phone, here is a tough, waterproof, shockproof and freeze proof camera designed to capture all your sporty adventures. It boasts the world’s fastest continuous shooting frame rate (approx. 15 fps with AF), Slow View and Live Image Control, and features full HD video, built-in GPS and a Wireless Mobile Adapter to instantly share photos; CASIO BABY-G MINI GLOSS ANA-DIGI WATCH $120. Who doesn’t love a Casio, and this silver sporty classic combines analog and digital displays on a 3D dial that features world time, multiple alarms, 1/100th-second stopwatch, a countdown timer and more.

ROW 2: HERMES BOUCLE SELLIER $3800. Silver chain and buckle design, this chunky Hermes silver bracelet is the ultimate in sporty chicness; REBECCA MINKOFF PETRA JELLY THONG SANDALS $98. Metal details adorn these high gloss rubber sandals.

ROW 3: SAINT LAURENT TOY DUFFEL $1390. This fab little metallic leather duffel style handbag features rolled top handles, embossed logo, an adjustable chainstrap and protective metal feet at base. SPECIALIZED GLOBE ROLL 7 $900. The Roll 7, with its classic Cr-Mo frame and Nexus 7-speed drivetrain, can handle the most competitive urban assaults while maintaining it’s cool and polished style.

ROW 4: ADIDAS ORIGINALS GAZELLE OG now $76. These shiny Gazelle classics feature a metallic upper with snakeskin embossed details on the heel, eye stays and heel tab; BARRACUDA HYDROBAT RACING GOGGLES $17.95. These revolutionary racing goggles feature a Batwing design that covers the eye socket and dramatically reduces drag. The mirrored, anti-fog coated lenses and frame provide a focused visual field plus wide peripheral vision. The frame also uses fluted holes in the lower area to channel water and create a hydrostatic pressure that holds the goggle firmly in place during dives, flip turns and open water swimming.


A Winter’s Run




Got the running bug? No need to let a little cold weather stop you when there are so many great jackets, tights, tops, hats and gloves to keep you warm, happy and running outdoors this winter. With the right gear, winter can be one of the most beautiful times of the year to run. Wind resistant, waterproof, warm, wicking and breathable layers are all you need. Here are some our favorite pieces from top to bottom. All are available for both men and women unless otherwise indicated.



NIKE THERMA-FIT REVERSIBLE RUNNING HAT $22. Total warmth with two looks in one, this reversible hat is made with microfiber fleece that provides maximum insulation with minimal weight and bulk.

SMARTWOOL TRAINING BEANIE $22. This merino wool beanie features a four-panel design and contoured double layer ear band to ensure a snug fit that stays in place during all high-intensity activities.

ICEBREAKER POCKET HAT $26.99. Lightweight and also made from warm merino wool, this stylish little hat is reversible and available in an array of great colors.



PATAGONIA HOUDINI JACKET $99. Paper thin and light as a feather, this little shell offers big protection from the elements. It is made of a highly wind-resistant ripstop nylon with a Deluge® DWR finish, and conveniently packs away into its own palm sized zipper chest pocket.

NIKE ELEMENT SHIELD MAX RUNNING JACKET $250. This slim-fitting jacket offers lightweight wind and water resistance without sacrificing freedom of movement. It features breathable stretch Dri-FIT jersey with strategically placed stretch panels, DWR finish, and an adjustable hood with removable face gaiter for extra warmth and protection.

MOUNTAIN HARDWARE GHOST WHISPERER HOODED JACKET $165. Another featherweight shell weighing in at a mind-bending 2 oz, this jacket is a super wind, water and element resistant outer layer, also packing down to nothing in its own chest pocket. Read More


Olympic Patchwork



The 2014 Winter Olympics are fast approaching and I had an exciting Olympic moment of my own last week getting to try on one of the official US Olympic Team snowboard jackets created by Burton Snowboards. This is the third consecutive Olympics that Burton has partnered with US Ski & Snowboard Association to create the US Snowboard team uniform. They once again looked to American heritage for inspiration, choosing the patchwork quilt and the American flag.

Burton designers found their perfect vintage quilt at an antiques fair and brought it home to Vermont where it was deconstructed and re-constructed by a veteran Vermont quilt maker, who created the design that would be replicated onto the outerwear. The end result is a jacket that looks like it was hand-stitched with patchwork squares and no two jackets are alike. A duplicate of a vintage American flag is proudly featured on the jacket’s sleeve.

With the design inspiration in place, technical performance came next. Burton turned to the US Army RD&E Center to research and develop a new DRYRIDE Vaporshell laminate, which is being showcased for the first time in the Olympic Competition Jackets. Sochi is known for its unpredictable weather, and this waterproof breathable fabric has been created to stand up to anything Mother Nature decides to dole out. The corduroy that was chosen for the pant fabric, another staple of American heritage, has been weatherproofed with the same laminate. Water literally beads and rolls off it.

To round out the look, Burton also designed all items that will be worn under the jacket and pants, including first-layer bottoms and tops, three different beanies, gloves/mitts and a cozy wool/silk blend competition pull-over fleece. All are slightly reminiscent of items you might find in a New England country store. “We’re really proud that the 2014 uniform builds on Burton’s legacy of creating fun, unconventional designs that stray from the formal, traditional look of most uniforms,” said Greg Dacyshyn, Chief Creative Officer at Burton Snowboards. “The vintage quilt and flag print of the jacket combined with the corduroy pants give the uniform a ‘heirloom hippy’ vibe that lines up with snowboarding’s laid-back culture while paying respect to America’s longstanding creative heritage.


The Citi Bike Update


It has been about 6 months since the Citi Bike bicycle sharing program launched in NYC. Despite early glitches, it has caught on with great success. The Department of Transportation released data last week about the program which revealed that New Yorkers are taking 33,000 bike trips daily on a Citi Bike, most frequently for commuting, but also for errands, shopping, sightseeing and exercise. 95,000 had signed up for annual memberships. I wrote about my early experiences with the Citi Bike program at the end of June in a piece called SHARE THE RIDE. As I have since become an official Citi Bike rider, as seen on my keychain above, I thought it would be useful to update the piece with a few new thoughts.

Let me say first of all I think the program is great. What I do and don’t like about the bikes is just my personal experience, but it is fantastic to see so many New Yorkers out there on those blue bikes, adopting the program, and choosing pedal power over other forms of transportation. By and large, I can always get a bike, and equally important, get rid of it at the end of the journey. Only once have I been shut out by no bikes, but it was rush hour on a beautiful day, on a very populated Park Ave South. Only once have I been unable to return a bike because of no open stations at a particular destination or spots nearby. This required waiting for about 10 minutes for someone to take a bike out so I could slot mine in. Others were uncomfortably hovering to do the same. Both experiences made me realize that using the bikes to get someplace on time might not be the most reliable form of transportation. Hence, I don’t ride them that often, maybe a couple times a week.

As I wrote previously the bikes themselves are real clunkers. They are obviously built for durability, and with the kind of beating they take on NYC streets (the cobblestones are particularly brutal), they are proving fairly indestructible, but they are not that fun to ride. Perhaps part of that durability is how upright the frame has to be, but I find myself slipping forward off the seat and wishing that the pedals were more in front of me so I could get more power with the pedal stroke. The bikes only have 3 speeds and are not meant to go fast, but when you find yourself in traffic, needing to pick up speed fast to avert distaster, I find the geometry of the bikes a challenge. Hence I don’t ride the bikes for long trips.

What do I ride the bikes for most regularly is crosstown trips, or to and from destinations where there is no public transportation. For example, it’s the perfect way to get from my office on 29th and Park to the Chelsea art galleries, or from Tribeca to the east side subway. According to the DOT, this is one of the most popular ways the CitiBikes are being used, in tandem with other form of transportation.

So while I don’t love the bikes, I do love the program and the shared bond you feel with your fellow New Yorker on a Citi Bike at a red light. I have found a way to integrate and support the bike sharing program, which I think is important for environmental and health reasons, and it’s kind of cool to have that blue key ready to unlock a bike at any place and any time. While I do still find the bikes quite ugly, they have sort of become an indelible feature of the NYC landscape. As a life long New Yorker, riding the Citi Bikes feels like what real New Yorkers do.


Vested Interest



A few weeks ago, we brought you our 9 FAVORITE PUFFER JACKETS. We are back with our 9 favorite puffer vests. The down, or alternately insulated, vest is the perfect way to get an extra layer of warmth. With so many colors, cuts, fills, weights and quilting to choose from, we thought we’d share 9 of our favorites. So whether you’re looking for a super sporty style or something more refined, we’ve got the vest for you.

ROW 1: ELIZABETH ROBERTS ELIOT VEST $450. With it’s tapered silhouette, cap sleeve and belted waist, this is a most fashionable down vest, but it has host of technical features as well. It is made with a Schoeller® water and stain repellent stretch fabric, has multiple hidden and side seam pockets, including their signature Smartsheild™ protective pocket for your phone. THE NORTH FACE THERMOBALL VEST $149. As an alternative to down, the Thermoball line uses Primaloft insulation constructed to imitate down with low weight high loft clusters. This synthetic insulation achieves the warmth equivalent of 600-fill down and retains heat even when wet. MARMOT JENA VEST $150. Available in 7 colors, this 800 fill goose down vest delivers a whole lot of warmth to the core.

ROW 2: BOGNER FIRE & ICE DOWN VEST CALI-D $449. This feather-light bright neon down vest features a contrast color lining and removable hood, which can be adorned with fur trim Pelz, sold separately. Available in 5 colors. NIKE AEROLOFT RUNNING VEST $180. Insulation meets ventilation with this tech infused lightweight down vest. Zones of perforated ventilation are alternated with zones of lofted insulation to keep heat in and let moisture out. UNIQLO ULTRALIGHT DOWN HOODED VEST $49.90. For the price, this very warm vest with its down-filled hood can not be beat. It’s incredibly light and thin; a high collar protects from cold wind; and it stows easily in its attached pouch.

ROW 3: CANADA GOOSE FREESTYLE VEST $275. Available for both men and women in a plethora of colors, this down vest is durable and well-insulated. Cut longer in the back for greater coverage, and with a wealth of practical storage pockets, this is one warm and functional extra layer. PATAGONIA NANO PUFF VEST $149. The Nano Puff Vest uses PrimaLoft ONE insulation for superb compressibility, featherlight weight and most importantly warmth. The 100% recycled ripstop shell is windproof and water repellent. MONCLER GHANY GILET $539. Warm, chic and sporty, this red shiny vest is a Moncler classic.


Sweat With Style





LEFT COLUMN: THE SOULCYCLE BIKE $2200. Bring the Soul home with the signature yellow spinning bike from SoulCycle, the hot boutique spin studio, now with locations from coast to coast. BROOKS PURE FLOW 2 $70. From the Brooks Pure Project natural running line, the Pure Flow 2 is distinctive for the plush cushioning it offers in a such a lightweight construction. Ideal for all around training in addition to running, the shoe is designed to promote an efficient, aligned stride by encouraging a more forward foot strike and a natural feel. An asymmetrical lace system is contoured to the anatomy of the foot. POWERPLATE MY3 $2599. Vibration training is one of the hottest fitness trends, as well as an integral part of athletic training for improving range of motion, muscle tone, flexibility and core strength. Power Plate is the premiere brand, and the MY3 is the most compact and economical model available for home use. BKR WATER BOTTLE $28. These modern glass water bottles, available with a wide array of brightly colored silicone sleeves to protect from breakage, are as much a design statement as an eco-friendly way to take your hydration to go.

CENTER COLUMN: NIKE AEROLOFT METALLIC RUNNING VEST $240. Insulation meets ventilation with this tech infused lightweight down vest. Zones of perforated ventilation are alternated with zones of lofted insulation to keep heat in, while letting moisture out. TRIGGER POINT THE GRID 2.0 $64.99. The evolution of the foam roller is The Grid 2.0, designed on a grid system of varying widths and densities to better work out muscle tension and trigger points on all areas of the body. ATHLETA COPPERFIELD SWEATSHIRT $79. This warm and cozy slouchy neck sweatshirt is perfect for going to and from the gym or just relaxing at home. Collar functions as hood as well. NIKE+ FUELBAND SE ROSE GOLD $169. Track your fitness in style with the limited rose gold edition of the Nike + Fuelband SE. Polished metallic accents add extra flair and durability too. SPEEDO HYDROSPEX CLASSIC GOGGLE $15.99. A perfect stocking stuffer, this is Speedo’s top selling recreational goggle, with its soft outer eye fit, flexible one-piece frame for comfort, UV protection and anti fog lens.

RIGHT COLUMN: Y-3 FS BACKPACK $154. First introduced for Y-3’s 10th anniversary, the distinctive X-strap design of the Future Sport Backpack remains a popular and enduring style. This bag combines sporty, technically-inspired styling with a functional design great for the gym and other daily destinations. ADIDAS SUPERNOVA LONG SLEEVE TEE $45.00. Supersoft and stretchy, body skimming and breathable, this has to be one of the most comfortable running and training shirts around. PRANA ROXANNE PRINTED LEGGING $65. Add a bit a excitement to your yoga and gymwear with these fun patterned leggings. Water Resistant, moisture stays on the fabric’s surface to keep you dry and comfortable through all your fitness activities. GO LITE ELIXER LEATHER SLIP-ON $89. For easy slip-on and off at the yoga, pilates or spinning studio, these cute and comfortable shoes provide great stability and traction en route. Memory foam creates a custom fit while lightweight breathable mesh keeps the feet cool in warmer temperatures.


Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow





Clockwise top left: KASK SKI HELMET. The Elite Man shown above is one of 4 gorgeous Kask ski helmets that feature an integrated anti-fog and anti-scratch visor goggle that hinges up for convenience with style. $499.95

THE NORTH FACE WOMENS VILLAGE NUPSTE VEST. From the official Villagewear Collection to be worn by the US Freeskiing Team this February at the Winter Olympics, is this star studded warm, lightweight, and highly compressible 700-fill goose down vest. Support Team USA and check out all the other great red, white, blue, stars and stripes in this limited edition collection. $160

BURTON SNOWBOARDS LIP-STICK RESTRICTED. “Push It Real Good” on this Salt-n-Pepa adorned snowboard designed to have you dancin’ on the slopes. Frostbite Edges grip the iciest of ice, and a scoop nose and tail keeps it free flowin’ in the soft stuff. $479.95

SWEATY BETTY ALBERS SEEMLESS LEGGINGS. You’ll be eager to strip down by the fire and reveal these work-of-art base layer leggings with their Bauhaus-inspired design. Seamlessly engineered in soft sweat-wicking fabric, they are double cable-knitted for better opacity and feature a waistband that can be folded over or worn high for added warmth. $95 Read More


All Fun and Games





Clockwise from top left: GARMIN APPROACH S4. The ultimate accessory for your golf lover is this touchscreen GPS golf watch from Garmin. It is preloaded with more than 30,000 international courses; measures precise distance to the front, back and middle of greens; gives detailed stat tracking, and even receives email, texts and alerts. $349.99

JACQUES HENRI LARTIGUE: A SPORTING LIFE. 20th century photographer great, Jacques Henri Lartigue, was inspired by sport and created some of the most captivating and recognized images in the genre. This elegant photography album displays his passion for sports like auto racing, skiing, tennis, gymnastics and hang gliding, as well as the dynamism of the human body in motion. $75

RESTORATION HARDWARE VINTAGE LEATHER PUNCHING BAG. Crafted in classic Restoration Hardware style is this rugged vintage punching bag, made from burnished leather, that is tanned, distressed and stitched by hand. $495

ARBOR SKATEBOARDS TIMELESS. The Arbor Timeless is aptly named. It is a classic pintail longboard carver designed for smooth pavement cruising. 46″ in length, it features a wide concave platform and hefty wheelbase for maximum push and speed stability. $99.95

CB2 FLECHETTE DARTBOARD & DARTS SET. This fun retro dartboard and darts set, created exclusively for CB2 by design duo Robert and Cortney Novogratz, was designed as much to be a graphic work of art as an object of play. It is just one piece in the Novogratz Holiday Collection at CB2 and showcases their distinctive flair for combining bold modern style with flea market chic. $79.95   Read More