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Trend Picks of the Year: Mountain

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+ We could say 2007 was big for high-altitude exploits, but that would be understating one Himalaya of a year. Irishman Ian McKeever started '07 with a bang, knocking off the Seven Summits in a record 156 days

+ Shortly thereafter Apa Sherpa padded his peerless Everest résumé with his 17th ascent, and American Sean Burch bagged 63 Tibetan summits in 23 days.

+ With relative peace descending upon Nepal for the first time since 1996, the growth rate of expedition permits rose like the North Face, to record highs.

+ Big-rig 29-inch (74-centimeter) mountain bikes (with wheels three inches [eight centimeters] larger than standard 26ers) plowed their way into the lines of a few mainstream manufacturers, while interest in paragliding—the leap-of-faith sport of, um, flings—spiked when German sky flier Ewa Wisnierska was caught in a sudden storm and updrafted to 32,612 feet (9,940 meters). She passed out and awoke coated in ice. Somehow she lived.

+ And Wyoming native Jay Petervary closed out the year in high gear, dusting the field in the Great Divide Mountain Bike Race by pedaling the entire 2,490-mile (4,007-kilometer) route in 15 days. An average of 166 brutal off-road miles (267 kilometers) a day? That, folks, is huge.

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