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Posted by on Aug 23, 2016 in Uncategorized |

How To Choose The Right ATV

All-terrain vehicles are used for a variety of reasons. Many people purchase an ATV for pleasure: riding around the yard, taking on camping trips, or enjoying some time exploring areas off the beaten path. ATVs are also very useful for farming, hunting, and for use on the job if you work outdoors. Whether you are choosing your first ATV or you are purchasing a new one to replace an ATV you already have, it is important to do the appropriate research before you make a purchase. Several factors should go into your purchasing decision to make sure you get the right ATV at a price you can afford. This will ensure many safe and fun excursions. Use the following guide to help you choose your ATV.


Size is one very important factor to consider when purchasing an ATV. An ATV that is too big or too small can be dangerous, and can leave you vulnerable to injury when riding. Before you purchase one, go visit several showrooms to test out available sizes and models. You may get a better deal at an online retailer or by buying your new ATV second hand from a private seller. However, going to a showroom to try out ATVs before you buy will give you an idea of what make, model, and size fits you best. 

Safety Ratings

The safety rating is the most important factor to consider when purchasing an ATV. Read online reviews, both from the manufacturers’ websites, ATV dealers’ websites, and independent parties that review ATVs. Remember that some reviews may not be impartial, and you should get a variety of reviews from several types of sources before you make a decision. Once you have gathered information, choose an ATV with a high safety rating and consistently high reviews from multiple sources.


Price is a major concern for many ATV buyers. However, don’t let this one purchasing factor guide your buying decision. Narrow your list of possibilities down to a few ATVs in your budget, then narrow them down based on the other criteria. You don’t have to sacrifice safety and an appropriate fit to be able to find an ATV in your price range.

After you purchase your ATV, your research doesn’t end. Purchase the appropriate safety gear, to include goggles or safety glasses, boots, gloves and a helmet. Even the safest ATV can’t protect you from injury without the proper personal protective gear when you ride. For assistance, talk to a professional like Carl’s Cycle Sales.

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Posted by on Aug 17, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Make Sure To Buy These Safety-Related Items When You Buy Your Own Raft

If you’ve tried white water rafting on a few occasions at an outdoors center and have discovered your new passion, you may wish to eventually invest in a small raft — perhaps with a few of your friends — and focus on the sport together. If so, you’ll have a long list of gear to buy, from the raft to the paddles to your flotation device and helmet. It’s also important, however, to think about the safety gear you’ll need for a day out on the water. You may not have used these items at the outdoors center, and thus not been aware of them, but they’re vital to carry. Here are some worthwhile items to pick up.


Everyone in your rafting group should carry a whistle attached to the front of their flotation device. Whistles are an effective way to communicate with each other in the event of one person ending up in the river. While the person will be able to safely float because of his or her vest, it may be difficult for the others in the boat to spot the person — and the roar of the water can drown out any shouts. With a few blasts of the whistle, the person’s location will be evident to those in the boat.

Flare Gun

Every raft should have a flare gun tied down to it. You’ll ideally never need to use this item, but it will be vitally important if you ever get lost or stuck in a precarious spot on the river and require assistance. Instead of shouting for help, which is likely to be unheard, you can send off a flare or two. They’ll be seen from a significant distance, which should ideally alert others in the area to your location and predicament, allowing them to summon whatever rescue personnel are necessary.

Strobe Lights

Just as whistles are ideal to affix to each rafter’s vest, personal strobe lights are also necessary. These small devices can be turned on at dusk when the lighting is poor and can give the other rafters a clear idea of the location of someone who has fallen out of the boat during a rough patch of rapids. A strobe light can be not only ideal as a backup to the whistle, but it is also especially useful because the other rafters will be able to pinpoint the location because of the brightness of the light.

For more information, contact a company like Redwoods and Rivers.

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Posted by on Jul 7, 2016 in Uncategorized |

4 Bucket List Items That Are Easy To Check Off

Bucket lists are becoming more and more prevalent these days. There are websites devoted to storing them and thousands of published articles about what to include on your list. Bucket lists even have their own acronym: YOLO, or you only live once. If you have a bucket list a mile long and want to check a few things off, here are a few seemingly crazy items that are fairly easy to accomplish.

1. Run a Marathon: Are you a die-hard couch potato looking to get fit enough to run a marathon? Does it seem impossible? While it does require you to get up off that couch, learning to run is not impossible. In fact, there is a free program developed by a runner just for you called Couch to 5K, or C25K for short. In just 8 short weeks, it takes you from sedentary to running a 5K. There are additional programs that can boost you up to those 26 miles, but a 5K has you moving in the right direction. 

2. Learn to Skydive: Jumping out of an airplane and enjoying the view while plummeting to earth is on many bucket lists. In the past, the only way to cross it off was to join the military. However, there are skydiving classes popping up all over the country where you can learn the skills needed to not only survive, but enjoy the jump.

3. Spend New Year’s Eve in Times Square: Each year, millions of people watch the infamous ball drop in Times Square from the comfort of their own living room. They may mumble something about how it would be fun to see live, but they never act on that thought. If this one is on your bucket list, it’s easy to fulfill. Call and make a hotel reservation. Period. Once again, the only thing required for success is action. You have to plan ahead; don’t expect to get a hotel reservation in mid-December for New Year’s Eve. In fact, call on January 2nd and then save your pennies the rest of the year for some spending money while you are there. 

4. Crash a Wedding: While no one here is recommending you do this, many people think the idea of crashing someone else’s wedding would be a fun, bucket list item. The only real required skill is guts. Dress up, head to an area hotel known for their beautiful banquet center, and crash away. You could rent the movie, Wedding Crashers, with Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson if you want to pick up a few tips. 

If you have other items on your personal list, try breaking them down into manageable tasks so you can cross them off. YOLO, right?

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Posted by on Jun 6, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Hot Mix By The Humpbacks: Why Ancient Whale Songs Have Scientists Hooked

If humans could hear with the naked ear all of the racket and singing going on under the surface of the sea, they would be amazed. Whales, dolphins and seals are some of the ocean creatures that use other-worldly vocalizations, calls, moans and clicks to communicate and find food.

Ocean researchers and marine biologists have recently taken a strong interest in the science of whale sounds. All along Earth’s coastlines, whale calls and songs are being studied for several important reasons:

Elusive whales can be counted

Whale populations are always on the move finding places to eat and mate, and whales are constantly being monitored around the world using tags, visual census-taking and sonar tools. These monitoring efforts make it easier for countries and agencies to set harvesting limits and make ocean-friendly policies. Experts use the data to pinpoint where whales migrate, feed and raise their calves in order to better protect sensitive areas.

Over the years, researchers have learned to distinguish the various cries and songs of specific whale species. By setting hydrophones (microphones that pick up underwater sounds) in busy undersea areas, scientists can now hear the cries of certain types of whales that are very difficult to see.

Recently in Monterey Bay, California, a hydrophone picked up the call of the shy and rarely seen beaked whale. The beaked whale’s song is as timid as its creator, since the notes can’t be picked up by the human ear even with the hydrophone’s help. However, all sounds recorded by the submerged microphone are turned into graphs called spectograms, and with these visual records, biologists are able to discover the presence of whales they might otherwise miss.

Noise pollution can be tamed

Scientists also want to understand how human activity impacts whales’ ability to communicate. Researchers don’t really understand all of the meanings behind whale songs, but they do suspect that interference from outboard motors, boat propellers and industrial noise pollution can disorient whales and cause them more stress.

Some biologists speculate that over time, whales may raise the pitch of their songs in order to compensate for increased auditory stimuli in our oceans. Since some whales live hundreds of years, researchers can study the songs of individual whales over many years to determine if this is true.

By comparing whale sound patterns in areas where there is little human noise to sounds from areas with a lot of human activity, researchers may be able to discover how to best help whales deal with excess racket in the underwater environment. This will hopefully lead to happier and healthier whale populations.

If you want to hear a live performance of whale music and chatter, join a whale watching tour that has an on-board hydrophone. Many whale sightseeing boats have such devices and will place them in the water when the watercraft is close to a pod of whales, so you can hear the whales “talk” to one another.

There are also personal hydrophone devices you can purchase that include earphones, a rubber-sealed hydrophone “disc,” and a long cable. You simply drop the hydrophone off the side of the boat or pier and adjust the controls to listen to undersea sounds. Contact a company like Orca Enterprises LLC for more information.  

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Posted by on May 10, 2016 in Uncategorized |

How You And Your Gunsmith Can Keep Your Family Safe From Accidental Shootings

There’s nothing wrong with owning guns and raising children, as long as you’re safe with them. Unfortunately, it’s possible for children to get a hold of guns and accidentally shoot somebody. However, if you’re willing to work with your local gunsmith, you can teach your children to respect guns and to keep their hands off. This is a vital way to keep your family safe from these dangers.

Accidental Shootings By Children Are Up

One of the saddest statistics to emerge in 2016 is the number of people that have been shot by toddlers. As of May 3, 2016, 23 people were reported as being shot by toddlers. This is up from 18 people at the same time last year. The worst cases were probably those in which the children accidentally shot themselves, though a two-year old in Wisconsin accidentally shot his mother.

Incidents like this always have many people clamoring for tighter gun control laws. Without getting into the political or sociological implications of these laws, it’s clear that parents need to treat their guns with respect and teach their children the same level of respect.

Gunsmith Tips On Keeping Kids Away From Guns

Online gunsmiths and gun experts understand gun safety and how to keep your children from getting their hands on guns. Here are a few of their suggestions:

  • Avoid hiding guns, as this can turn it into a game of hide and seek. Instead, put them in a gun cabinet and keep the cabinet locked at all times.
  • Never keep pistols and other self-defense weapons out in the open, such as located under your pillow while you sleep at night.
  • Sit down and talk to your children in an open and honest way about the dangers of guns. Simply flatly demanding that they never touch guns will only inspire curiosity. Most children will understand these rules.
  • Always store your guns unloaded. This fact might seem obvious, but accidental shootings by children usually occur when the child is handling a loaded gun.

You might also want to talk to a gunsmith in your area and see if they can’t install some kind of safety device on your gun, such as a trigger lock. Contact a company like Lock’s Philadelphia Gun Exchange for more specific info.

Teaching Children To Respect Guns

If your children are still fascinated by your guns, it’s worth taking them to a gunsmith and having them give a short discussion on gun safety and the dangers of mishandling guns. Your child will be engaged by the trip to the shop and will be likely to listen to what the gunsmith has to say. This is especially true if they are willing to discuss the ways that guns can hurt people.

However, the buck ultimately stops with you. Teach your children how to properly behave around guns, including stopping when they see a gun, avoiding touching it, and running away to find an adult. Teach it to them using phrases like “Stop! Don’t touch! Find an adult!” as children often respond well to these memory devices.

By following this advice, you can keep your guns out of your children’s hand, teach them how to respect the power of a gun, and prepare them for a lifetime of safe gun handling when they get older.

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Posted by on Apr 6, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Three Eco-Friendly Boat Cleaning Tips

As an environmentally conscious boat owner, you may be understandably concerned about the effect your hobby is having on the environment. You want to participate in nature and continue to enjoy it for decades, not destroy it. And how you clean your boat can make a difference in what type of influence you are on the marine ecosystems you frequent. One of the big things that can have a negative effect on your favorite waterways is developing bad boat cleaning habits. Combating any tendency toward negative cleaning habits can be a big step in the right direction. Here are three practical tips that you can incorporate into your boating habits to ensure that you are as Earth-friendly as possible.

1. Wash early and often

First of all, the frequency and timing of your boat cleaning can have an enormous impact. If you don’t wash your boat often and correctly, you could unknowingly carry invasive species that will invade the next body of water your boat encounters. For this reason, it’s recommended that you wash your boat thoroughly with water after each excursion. You also need to empty out any water that you may have in containers on board and wash the buckets out, because these can also carry aquatic life.

2. Maximize elbow grease

When washing your boat, it’s occasionally necessary to use a cleaning product to remove grime. When you do use cleaning products, be sure to use gentle ones designed to clean boats without harming nearby marine habitats. However, you can reduce how often you need to use cleaner by washing the boat as thoroughly as possible with elbow grease and water. Instead of doing the bare minimum just to remove any species of aquatic life that may be hitching a ride, you can take the opportunity to scrub the boat until it shines. This will both keep your boat looking great every day and will prevent the buildup of grime, reducing the need to use cleaning products.

3. Be mindful of runoff

One of the reasons it’s important to do your boat cleaning right after an excursion rather than right before the next outing is so you can allow the boat to dry in the sun (ideally for several days), further reducing the chances of stowaways. Another reason is if you clean the boat near the next waterway, runoff could allow the hitchhikers you’re washing off to safely reach the new body of water and contaminate it. So when you wash your boat, be careful of where the runoff is going. And when you do decide to use cleaning products, try to make sure the boat is far away from any bodies of water to reduce the chances of chemical pollution in the aquatic ecosystem.

These three actionable tips will help you plan your boat cleaning habits in order to maximize their eco-friendliness. Remember, you should also incorporate other eco-friendly habits into your routine, such as keeping everything on your deck secured so that trash won’t blow away and litter the area but instead can be packed out and disposed of in a trash can. Contact a trusted boating company, like Boater’s Landing or a similar location, for more tips and info.

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