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Around the World in 7KGS

KMD HK JAA5019 RT

Kathmandu gave us one day to test their new summer gear. But they never said we had to stay in New Zealand.

Dan Cullen, Summit Club Member since 2011

We enlisted athletes Dan Cullen and Kate Baxter to test out our new hiking, active, trail running and travel gear for summer. They decided to give it the ultimate road test. They packed a bag for an epic summer experience.

5:00AM IN HONG KONG.

Trail running.

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Dan and Kate trail running on Lion Rock, HK

Dan and Kate are up before sunrise. They’ve packed a carry on bag each and the only rest between now and the end of the day will be on a plane.

They're picked up in a taxi and double-check the directions, before arriving at the trailhead car park of Hong Kong's Lion Rock. The average hiker would take about 90 minutes to reach the peak and panoramic view, but the guys decide to run it - and they do it in 25 minutes. After some quick snaps at the top, Dan and Kate are back down in no time. They grab some dumplings and head to the airport. A quick change of clothes later, they’re headed for Canada.

11:45AM IN VANCOUVER.

Mountain biking.

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Dan mountain biking in Vancouver

After plenty of water, a few half decent movies and a little bit of sleep, Dan and Kate are forced to adjust to their new time zone immediately. There’s no choice when you’re about to hop into a combi to hit North America’s most popular mountain biking trails.

Within an hour they have organised a couple of bikes and arrive at Vancouver’s Lynn Valley. After loads of tough manoeuvres, a couple of tight squeezes and one big stack it’s back into the van.

1:30PM IN VANCOUVER.

Grouse Grind.

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Dan and Kate take on the Grouse Grind

Dan and Kate’s drive to their next activity is a quick one – giving them a handful of minutes to refuel and change into some fresh gear. Almost as fast as they finish their muesli bars, Dan and Kate are out of the van and ready to storm through Vancouver’s adventure playground – Grouse Mountain.

Swerving through tourists seeking the perfect vista and Instagram pic, the guys power up the mountain only stopping a couple of times to catch their breath. Once at the top, it’s right onto the gondola to head back down – Dan and Kate are southbound.

6:00PM IN SEATTLE.

Kayaking.

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Kate and Dan kayaking across Seattle's Lake Union

Crossing the border and heading into sunny Washington State, Dan and Kate opted for something a bit different – the perfect combination of kayaks and tacos. Just off Seattle’s Lake Union, Dan and Kate find the Agua Verde Café and Paddle Club, where they quickly grab some paddles and cruise through Portage Bay and out amongst the seaplanes. After paddling back through Lake Union and dropping off their kayaks, there’s just enough time to fill their stomachs with a few tacos and head for the Seattle-Tacoma airport.

11:00PM IN ALASKA.

Hiking.

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Kate sets up camp in Alaska

With a good three and a half hour rest on the plane, Dan and Kate hit the ground running on America’s final frontier. There’s over two hours of daylight left, the guys decide to hightail it out of Fairbanks and reach the edge of the Denali National Park.

Dan and Kate know they have enough time for a short hike before setting up their tent. As beautiful as the sunset looks, it’s as though someone has simply turned on the world’s biggest dimmer switch – a surreal ending to an epic day of following the light around the world. A few tacos and head for the Seattle-Tacoma airport.

Adventure athletes Dan Cullen and Kate Baxter gave our new hiking, active, trail running and travel gear the ultimate road test.


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