Tag Archives: Travel

Man Skills: Start a Fire with Your Car Battery

24 Feb

The latest issue of Men’s Journal Magazine (the one with a sick green Triumph Scrambler motorcycle on the cover) has a segment called “Survival Skills with Bear Grylls” in which they ask him a series of questions about adventuring, survival, manliness and his active life.  One of the questions they asked?  What is one skill that every man should have? Bear’s answer?  The ability to start a fire with your car battery. “I’ve had to do this a lot while camping with my family when I didn’t have matches or a lighter.”


Step 1: run your fingers through the grass.  The dead stuff will come off in your hands.

Step 2: Create a little bird’s nest with this dry grass.  Then run your jumper cables to it and ignite it.

Step 3: Add the ignited grass to a big pile of kindling, and you’ll have your fire.


Perfect Weekend: Scuba Diving Middle America

26 May

Having recently completed a scuba diving class only to take on a completely underwhelming dive on my honeymoon, I completely understand wanting to take more exciting and breathtaking dives.  Believe me.  This is why I am thankful for Men’s Journal.  In the June/July 2010 issue (Lance Armstrong’s 8th cover appearance), they highlight the perfect weekend: scuba diving middle america in an abandoned mine which has turned into an underwater ghost town.

Six hundred miles from the nearest ocean, eastern Missouri isn’t an obvious choice for scuba diving.  But the rural hamlet of Bonne Terre offers world-class diving just the same – in a former lead mine 60 miles due south of St. Louis.  From the 1860’s until 1961, the Bonne Terre Mine became the largest lead mine in the world, yielding millions of tons of lead ore.  After it shuttered, a billion gallons of groundwater flooded the 80-square-mile labyrinth, creating the world’s largest man-made underground lake and turning the former mine into the ultimate underwater playground – a cross between cavern and wreck diving, with eerie tunnels crusty with antiquated equipment hidden in the shadows.

More than 50 chartered trails are in the mine, threading narrow tunnels littered with old magazines, rock drills, and half-filled ore carts that still sit where miners dropped them 50 years ago, like the last vestiges of a working man’s Atlantis.  The most popular paths are overhung with stadium lighting, which illuminates the water’s 150 feet of visibility.  Wetsuits are highly recommended – the water stays a brisk 60 degrees year-round.  To avoid getting lost in the industrial-sized ant farm, certified divers must go in the water with guides from the on-site dive center, which is open on weekends and provides gear and scuba classes, as well as accommodations in a historic railroad depot restored as a bed-and-breakfast (packages from $210; 2dive.com).

A Portable Bar Worth Buying

10 Sep

0208bc0769mj200909septp11jpgw300There was an article on the best train rides money could buy in the September issue of Men’s Journal magazine.  While I was interested int he train rides, the corner insert caught my eye more quickly than anything.  The magazine highlighted the Manhattan from Picnic Time, a company that makes pretty much anything you could want for a picnic. The Manhattan (pictured below) has everything you need but the stuff that you need to be 21 to by: shaker, glasses, strainer, shoy measure, stirring stick, drink markets, corkscrew and even two pocket-square-looking coasters.  Fashion and function meet here for the man on a picnic…or on a train.


Travel Comfortably, Uniquely and in a Timely Fashion

10 Sep

Mens_journalIn the October 2009 issue of Men’s Journal, one of the “What’s New:October 2009” items is a book called Off the Tourist Trail. The book provides readers with a thousand scenic yet non-crowded tourist attractions that are just as good as the crowded tourist destinations.  These sites, however, let you see them quickly and with fewer people around, and you can be more worldly at the same time!  Thank’s Men’s Journal!  Side note – how is the October issue out already?  I digress…

tourist trail