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Backcountry Skiing: 5 Tips for a More Fun Ride

skiing

skiingWithout a doubt, a ski trip is one of the most interesting activities to do. Especially this holiday season, the snow-capped mountains and snug cabins are a sight to behold. Of course, the health benefits of skiing are part of the list.

Given how packed ski resorts get this time of the year, ski trips have truly become a tradition among Americans. But the trip doesn’t always have to be one where the entire family enjoys the day out and gathers around the fireplace afterwards. There’s always a way to turn up the fun in this activity – and that is through backcountry skiing. Should you feel the need to experience this thrill, follow these tips to make your ride more exciting:

Bring a Transceiver

Many skiers ignore this, but an avalanche transceiver is highly important for self-explanatory reasons. Never head off to the slopes without one – ever.

Find Versatile Skis

The secret to a great backcountry skiing experience rests on the skis you use, say the pros at American Ski Exchange. True enough, it’s a lot easier to navigate through powder when you have versatile skis that can adjust depending on the landscape. For backcountry skiing, your best choice would be wide, light skis.

Organize Your Pack

Choose the items you’ll bring to the slopes. A waterproof bag is normally enough to hold everything you need, such as a spare set of clothes, a pair of gloves, and some food. Avoid bringing stuff you don’t need or won’t use, such as tripods, tablets, cameras, and whatever gadget you think of bringing other than an avalanche transceiver and a phone.

Use Straight Poles

You might feel like the racer poles would work well, but you’re better off with the straight ones. It’s easier to complete all those pole-outs with a pair of straight, adjustable poles than those built with races in mind.

Wear Comfortable Boots

Boots that don’t fit will ruin your experience. Worse, these could expose you to injuries. As such, you have to find footwear that fits you perfectly. Only with comfortable boots can you conquer the backcountry without enduring aching feet afterwards.

Backcountry skiing might be tricky, but it’s one of the best ways to enjoy a ski trip. Follow these tips and surely you’ll conquer the off-piste slopes in no time.

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3 Causes of Car Accidents and Ways to Prevent Them

Causes of Car Accidents

Causes of Car AccidentsFast transportation is essential in a variety of applications, whether for personal or business matters. Manufacturers designed vehicles to make life more convenient. Still, this technology did not entirely turn out as how it should be.

As of December 2014, there are a total of 174 fatalities and 264 critical injuries reported in Western Australia alone. These numbers are quite alarming, given that it increased from the data tallied just last year. Knowing the common causes of car accidents can lessen and prevent its occurrence.

Distractions and Multi-tasking

The most common reason drivers get into accidents, according to reports, is because they are distracted or are multi-tasking. Drivers should fully focus on the road because accidents happen in a snap. If you’re too busy texting, putting on makeup, or eating, then stop the car or you’ll probably commit an offence.

Feeling Sleepy Due to Fatigue

Another reason drivers can’t focus on the road is because of fatigue. Driving while you’re sleepy causes accidents because you have less control of the car’s direction and speed. As much as possible, don’t drive if you’re drowsy. If you feel sleepy in the middle of the trip, stop to a nearby place and take a nap.

Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol

Drunk driving is much like being distracted and sleepy at the same time. The effect of alcohol in your body is not good for the road. You’re not yourself when you’re intoxicated. If you just got out of a party and you feel tipsy or drunk, it’s best that you drink coffee and rest before hitting the road.

Make sure you’re good condition when driving your vehicle or when you hire a car in Perth, WA, as you’ll either be fined or disqualified if you commit a traffic offence. The law provides a minimum amount for fines and a minimum period for disqualification. Only the court decides the exact figure.

When you’re on the road, you must always think about the other motorists. It is your duty to ensure safety.

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Different Types of Student Accommodation in London

Apartment

Are you planning to move and stApartmentudy in London? Then you’ve made a good choice. London is the home of the most prominent universities not only in the UK, but around the world. Top Universities, a site for university rankings, events, and guides worldwide, mentions that in the latest edition of the QS Best Student Cities, London ranked second as the best student city.

London has it all, but finding an ideal place to stay might be difficult. Apart from the high rental fees, the competition is tough because many others are searching and waiting for accommodation opportunities. Here are some types of cheap London student accommodations at lhalondon.com and other related sites to help you find yours:

Student Hall

The setting and environment of this accommodation aim to satisfy the needs of every student. It usually has common rooms where you can study and socialise with other students. It has two types:
– University Student Halls – These are within or near the school grounds, so you don’t have to worry about being late in the morning. It’s convenient, but you have to make a reservation as early as possible because slots are limited.

– Private Student Halls – These privately managed halls are more costly, but offer better facilities for students. In addition, students from different schools live in these halls, so you can make friends and broaden your connections.

Shared Houses or Flats

Renting a room in houses or flats is among the most common types of accommodation for both students and workers. Room prices differ depending on the location and living conditions. It’s best to find someone you know whom you can share rooms with, to cut rental costs and avoid disputes. Many problems take place when occupants don’t get along with each other.

Living and studying in a remarkable city like London is advantageous. Make sure that the student accommodation you choose will be comfortable enough to enjoy your stay.

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What to Do with the Stump in Your Yard

stump tree

stump treeIf you have recently felled a tree, or a storm did it for you, then you probably have a stump taking up space somewhere in your yard. Leaving it alone is out of the question, since it’s an eyesore in your property. The question is what exactly should you do with it?

Option 1: Remove it

Chances are, your first thought will be to get rid of it. This is perfectly understandable, but you should know what you’re getting into first. Although removing a stump is far easier than an entire tree, it is still no mean feat.

If the stump is quite small and shallow rooted, you might be able to just dig it up with enough effort. Grab a shovel, an axe, and something to saw the roots off with. Dig to expose the roots, and then start hacking away.

When the stump is fairly large, you will need to rent a stump grinder to do the hard work for you. Classic Hire recommends using a Toro grinder for most projects, and you will usually be done in just a few hours or less. Make sure to wear protective gear and learn how to use it properly first.

Some use fire to get rid of stumps, but that’s not always legal in some areas. The safety risks are big, too, since there is a ton of flammable material in your yard. It’s best to just steer clear of setting fire to anything near your home.

Option 2: Hide or use it

Don’t want to go through the effort of removal? Instead of treating the stump as a nuisance, why not make it a part of your outdoor decoration?

Get some free outdoor furniture by transforming it into a chair or table, and have guests marvel at your creativity and resourcefulness. Or try landscaping around it, adding a bit more authenticity and a natural, rustic feel to your yard. Maybe you can even place a birdbath on it to complete the illusion. The possibilities are almost endless.

Of course, this will only work if your stump is level and reasonably healthy looking. If it’s rotting heavily, then you have no real choice but to get rid of it.

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Why Some People are Lactose Intolerant

lactose intolerance

lactose intoleranceLactose intolerance is one of the most puzzling conditions that scientists have ever had to face for two important reasons. First, because the inability to process milk is actually the normal state of digestion. Digestive bacteria can’t break down the dairy and just try to shoot it out of the system as soon as possible. Second, the ability for adults to process milk is under the strongest selection in the human genome.

The human body can’t seem to make up its mind – or stomach. Ask any emergency dentist in Manchester from cheadlehulmedental.com or even an experienced physician, and they may tell you that milk is beneficial in many ways. The ability to digest milk is a genetically favourable trait, but the stomach can’t stand the stuff without constant exposure to it. How is this even possible?

The answer to all of these questions may lie in the diet of ancient people and how they approached drinking milk. Usually, anthropologists calculated the state of dairying in an ancient location on a few indirect lines of evidence.

These factors infer different levels of dairy consumption, but offer none of the certainty of physical evidence. Such factors include the frequency of adult females in domesticated animal herds, and milk lipids present in pots and jars.

Fortunately, scientists found something in ancient skeleton that may provide a better gauge on when people started drinking milk, and how much of it they consumed. The answer was something known as human dental calculus – a mineralised form of plaque stuck between a skeleton’s teeth. Apart from proving ancient people had poor dental hygiene, scientists can scan the plaque to detect the protein beta-lactaglobulin.

This discovery dates the earliest consumption of milk to around five thousand years ago, which is in line with the general timeline provided by the lipids on the pots. What people can get out of this is that humanity is in an evolutionary transition point when it comes to milk. The more specific timelines will allow scientists to compare the levels of milk consumption between ancient societies, and determine who drank more milk where.

This will them explain why some people are still lactose intolerant, whilst others have a genetic disposition that favours older milk.

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The Great Outdoors: Enjoying the Patio All-year Round

The Great Outdoors

The Great OutdoorsThe patio isn’t only a paved area where you can enjoy outdoor dining. It’s an extension of the living area, giving your home easy access to the outdoors. It’s a good place to let children play, host a private party, grow herbs and vegetables in small containers, or simply relax after a tiring day.

Even without going outside, saltlakewindowcompany.com explains that the patio door could still give you a view of the outdoors. All you need is to choose the right materials. Here are some ways you can enjoy the outdoors all-year round:

Winter

Don’t let the cold temperature stop you from going out. Build a fireplace or install a small fire pit to keep everybody warm. It’s a perfect place for barbecues even during this season. Add thick fabric to the furniture, so you’ll feel cozy while sitting on the sofa or at the dining table.

Spring

As the temperature becomes tolerable, you can spend more time relaxing outdoors without using the fireplace or fire pit. Springtime is when you can witness the garden or your small potted plants bloom. You can start inviting people over for a light snack or even a party.

Summer

Look for patio designs from home improvement sites like Better House and Gardens and HGTV to find inspiration. Summer is also a good time to host parties. If you have a swimming pool, you can enjoy it even more because you’ll have a resting place.

Fall

Like spring, fall is a good season to witness the changing colors of your garden. It’ll start to get chilly at night, so you can start lighting up the fire pit and gather round. It’s an ideal time to eat S’mores, too. If the patio is near the kitchen, getting more sweet treats would be easier.

Regardless of the season, you can do many things on the patio. All you need is to think of activities you can enjoy in the outdoors.

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5 Ways Businesses Cut Power Costs

energy costElectricity becomes more expensive as time passes. As far as the experts see it, Australia is yet to see an end (or at least a sign of it) to the continually increasing power costs. Of course, this is a challenge, especially for businesses that have to keep their operation-related expenses to a minimum.

On a brighter note, it is possible for startups and corporations to address this problem. Through these five ways, businesses can surely see a significant drop in their monthly bills:

Benchmark

The electronics in the office may not be the best in its field in terms of energy efficiency. As such, it is important for businesses to benchmark their electronic fixtures – from the light bulbs to the air conditioning units.

Insulate

Despite the many tips from experts, some businesses still fail to properly insulate their premises. As a result, the air conditioning works a lot harder than usual to compensate the temperature loss. This leads to higher power costs over time.

So to cut down on consumption, business owners should insulate the roof, seal the windows, and include indoor plants to better regulate the office temperature.

Maintain

An overused appliance draws more power to fulfil its task. In the office, the heating and cooling system is where this applies best. Although all electronics tend to be less energy-efficient over time, the jump in consumption of HVAC units tends to be greater than usual. For this reason, commercial heating and air conditioning experts always recommend regular maintenance work on these machines.

Monitor

It is also helpful to know when an office consumes the most electricity. Monitoring the power usage provides business owners a baseline on their power consumption. This makes it easier to adjust the office’s practices accordingly for better overall energy efficiency.

Power Down

This may sound cliché, but shutting down the AC and the computers is still one of the best practices to cut down on power consumption. A simple policy of shutting down all computers after the work day can already warrant hundreds of dollars in savings every month.

Businesses can cope with the rising power costs. With these techniques, surely any enterprise will have a more energy efficient daily operation.

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3 Reasons to Use a Custom Challenge Coin in Place of a Business Card

Coins

You have to admit that the oCoinsld-fashioned and boring business cards are already dated. Whether you are a business owner or a professional, you need something a little fresher and more modern, as well as something that will make you stand out from the crowd.

Maybe it’s time to take it up a notch. Instead of handing out a flimsy piece of paper listed with your name, address, and contact details, why not hand out a fancy coin that has everything on it? Here are some reasons you should replace the paper with the more elaborate business card coin:

Easy to Turn Into a Business Card

Customized coins are easy to turn into a business card. They are versatile; sites like Personalizedcoins.com can even create it in such a way that mimics a business card. The coins, although a little bit smaller than the traditional card, can carry all the important information about you. Coins can be single or double sided, which gives you ample space to include all the details, such as your name, the name of your business, your contact number, e-mail address, and website link.

This modern business card will give you plenty of opportunity to reach out to many people in a very memorable way, too.

Great and Memorable First Impression

Can you imagine digging inside your bag for a sturdy coin instead of a flimsy piece of paper known as a business card? The look on the person’s face you are giving it to will be enough to know that you made a good first impression. This is great especially for start-ups and small businesses.

Customized coins are simply a great, memorable way to get your name out there. New customers, vendors, and investors won’t surely forget your business “card” stored safely somewhere in their wallets.

Makes Your Brand or Image Unique

Commonly used as a marketing tool or promotional tool for events, customized coins are also great for branding. It’s easy to include the logo and even the motto of your brand in the design. Your mission statements can be there, too, if you want to make and include an insert card with the coin.

If you really want to take your brand to the next level and get the word about it, throw away the old-fashioned paper and go with the coins instead.

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Investing Overseas: The 3 Must-Try Business Opportunities in Rural America

Rural America

Rural AmericaSeasoned investors believe that business knows no borders. Investing in rural areas of the United States is different from having a business in the big cities. This year, more and more foreign investors focus on the stronger economic outlook of rural small businesses. Contrary to popular belief, a direct investment in rural enterprise to become a green card holder actually looks promising.

Some foreign investors grab the opportunities and potential of Detroit, once America’s richest city. It is slowly reviving due to foreign investments through EB-5. City governor Rick Synder once said he hopes to boost the city’s economy with the help of people who have the means to invest in an existing business.

If you are considering the profitable path to permanent residency, you need to do an extensive research and identify a strong investment project that will meet the standards of the EB-5 visa. Though you control your investment funds, being an EB-5 immigrant investor comes with great responsibility.

Here are some business ideas for small towns and rural areas this year:

Production of Organic Produce

Selling chemical-free fruits and vegetables is now in high demand. As more and more people turn to healthy options, the business can be lucrative. You can invest in a local farming business that follows strictly organic methods to cultivate vegetables, fruits, and local delicacies.

Construction

Another rural business idea to try is carpentry and woodwork. Some farmers and homeowners in rural areas do not have the right know-how and skills needed to put up structures, such as barns and chicken habitats. This is the reason investing in a small construction company can be the ideal business option, as it can provide you strong income and loyal customers.

Community Banks

The challenges of stiff outside competition are no longer a big problem, although they will not go away. Business experts claim they are seeing a strong interest into locally-owned community banks. Industry watchers, on the other hand, note that many businesses are turning to alternative financing methods. This means rural banks have become a viable option for foreign investors.

Investing in a business in rural areas surely has its upsides. You and those small town businesses have many things to look forward to, especially in 2015.

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4 Key Challenges To Better Waste Management

Waste Management

Waste ManagementWaste collection in Western Australia has continued its steady increase over the past few years. Despite this trend, the state still ranks behind other major states in waste collection. This highlights the need to implement changes if state authorities want things to improve by 2015.

In order to achieve the waste collection target, authorities need to address the key challenges preventing them from matching the waste collection performance of neighbouring states.

Challenges to Planning

One of the keys to a successful waste collection and management strategy is strategic planning. Authorities need to make sure that Western Australia does not run out of waste processing facilities. The State sees continuing economic and years, which means it needs to prepare to accommodate the need for more waste processing infrastructures, especially in the metropolitan regions.

Challenges to Communication and Awareness

The State has spent more than a decade of behaviour change to come up with a more sustainable approach to waste management. It has continually campaigned for reduced waste generation, increased waste recovery and reduced number of landfills. Data from 2008 to 2009 reveal that Western Australia topped the country in waste generation with 2.6 tonnes per capita. KwikSkips.com.au, a skip bin rental servicing, says this needs to improve in order to reduce the amount of waste dumped in landfills. The State needs to consistently communicate its plans to ensure all sectors – from the government, communities and industries – are aware of their roles.

Challenges to Regulations

Western Australia imposed the landfill licensing and classification system back in 1995 to improve waste management in the region. The system is responsible for ensuring that landfills consistently comply with the acceptance criteria. Right now, the regulatory framework for landfill operation needs to be reviewed to assess its new role – which is the implementation of the landfill levy.

Challenges to the Economy

Optimised and properly managed landfills perform the important role of collecting waste that cannot be recycled. Landfill operations are relatively cheaper compared to recycling plant operations, which mean they hinder the market growth of recycling facilities. In order to create a fair market competition, the cost of landfills would have to rise significantly.

Western Australia’s waste management efforts continue to receive significant support from individuals and organisations across the state, much of which are not reflected on official records and statistics. The State believes that giving these contributors the spotlight can help send a message to other concerned sectors to take part in the drive for better waste management in the future.

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