Wilderness Crunch: Northern States Feel it Most

We love the outdoors at Mountainfilm in Telluride, but a new study, “Outdoor Recreation in the Northern United States," shows that America's growing population and increasing interest in the outdoors is straining state and federal recreation areas, particularly in the northern states. The research, commissioned by the U.S. Forest Service, looks at 20 states in the north — extending from Maine to Minnesota and from Missouri to Maryland — and concludes that while the area’s population growth was less than the rest of the country, there will still be a conflict for land and water resources, especially when it comes to outdoor activities.

In this northern region, approximately 90 to 94 million people age 16 and older engage in outdoor recreation that ranges from hunting and fishing to orienteering, kayaking and mountain biking. The most popular activities are pretty tame: walking for pleasure, family gatherings outdoors, viewing/ photographing natural scenery, visiting outdoor nature centers,gardening or landscaping, and picnicking.

It’s All about the Bike: A Dispatch from Brazil

Sao Paulo, Brazil is a recent addition to Mountainfilm on Tour. Under Tour Director Henry Lystad, the world tour’s calendar and reach is expanding. He recently sent Mountainfilm in Telluride festival director David Holbrooke to Brazil for the second year of Mountainfilm in Sao Paulo. Here’s Holbrooke’s dispatch:

2012 USA Pro Cycling Challenge: Stage 1 Ends in Telluride

Telluride, Colorado, is no stranger to hosting sporting competitions. In 1910, Jack Dempsey reportedly sparred here, and the region’s high-alpine terrain has attracted world-class athletes to ski, mountain bike, run and compete in numerous elite competitions since. This Monday, August 20, however, brings a new event to town: the 2012 USA Pro Cycling Challenge.

Riders with Olympic, National Championships and Tour de France experience will race through the Rocky Mountains from August 20-26, climbing more passes than any other bike race in North America. Telluride hosts the finish line for the first day of the event, Stage 1, in which 135 riders will start in Durango to end on Telluride’s main street at an elevation of 8,750 feet. 

One Less Car: Cash for You

Federal tax credits for electric cars are nothing new, but the Senate Finance Committee recently approved a10 percent tax credit, worth up to $2,500, for e-bike and e-motorcycle purchases.

Senator Ron Wyden proposed the amendment to reinstate a previous tax break from 2009 that was part of the $800 billion stimulus package, which expired at the beginning of 2012. Wyden’s hope is that the proposed measure will help create jobs in the U.S. and encourage the electric bicycle industry to grow. Currently, that market is biggest overseas; approximately 25 million e-bikes were sold in China last year (compared to fewer than 100,000 in the States). In addition to its economic-boosting intent, we like this tax credit if it entices Americans to drive conventional vehicles less.

As with any bill, this one has still got to make it through the Senate, the House and meet the president’s approval. But if you’re feeling optimistic, you could get cracking on your shopping research for an e-bike or e-motorcycle now. Don’t look into getting an electric golf cart, though, tax credits for those will end if this bill passes. 

Slaves to Our Cars: Americans Work Two Hours a Day to Own a Car

Spring is in the air, and unmet New Year’s resolutions are nagging in the back of many of our minds. What better time to walk more? We’re not just talking about walking for the sake of exercise. No, we mean actually walking to get somewhere. It’s antiquated. It’s charming. Thankfully, it’s also the new black.

Many cities are battling sprawl with new urban design that promotes walking. Denver, Colorado, was recently recognized for making progress on this front in The New York Times. In 2010, the Huffington Post selected its picks for the most walkable cities in the world, which, incidentally, didn’t include Denver.

To Watch: Danny Macaskill's "Industrial Revolutions"

Mountainfilm screened Danny Macaskill's Way Back Home in 2011. Now, he has another amazing bike film worth watching called Industrial Revolutions.

Industrial Revolutions is the amazing new film from street trials riding star Danny Macaskill. Filmed and edited for Channel 4 's documentary Concrete Circus.

Bike For The Planet: GOOD Magazine Offers Up The Two Mile Challenge

In the U.S. 40 percent of all urban trips are less than two miles, but 90 percent of those trips are made by car. GOOD Magazine, along with CLIF Bar, has introduced the Two Mile Challenge to try and get more people to make those short trips on their bicycle. To further that effort, the magazine has offered up the GOOD Guide to Biking for the Planet, which has a lot of helpful information on biking.

From GOOD:

"Don't just run your errands—bike them! If you consider that each mile you travel by bike instead of car prevents one pound of carbon dioxide emissions from entering the atmosphere, the benefit of bike riding becomes clear."
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Getting a Ticket For Not Biking in the Bike Lane

As a cyclist, do you have to bike in the bike lane? In New York City, a cyclist was recently ticketed for not doing so, and as any good citizen journalist, he made a video about it.

The video has been making its way around the web over the last few weeks; a humorous watch for anyone in the cycling community who knows fully well the obstacles that often find their way into bike lanes.

Taking Action With Bicycles: Q&A With Dan Austin of 88Bikes

Bikes are big right now, both at home and abroad, and if we're certain of one thing it's that riding a bike makes people happy. One of our favorite organizations working with bicycles is 88Bikes. Co-founded by this Mountainfilm 2011 special guest Dan Austin, 88Bikes endows orphanages, ashrams, schools and villages throughout the developing world with bikes for every child, sponsored one-to-one by individuals. We caught up with Austin to learn more about the organization, how bikes are changing the world and who inspires him.

What inspired you to launch 88 Bikes?