FrontRunner: Into Thin Air

<< Back to Robb Report, February 2006
  • Nancy Wong Bryan

To prepare his body for the stress of ascending Mexico’s Orizaba (18,700 feet) and Iztaccihuatl (17,340 feet) volcanoes in a five-day span last year, Explorers Club president Richard Wiese simply showed up for work. There, in his office at the Manhattan-based adventure and research society, Wiese confined himself to a 9-by-7-by-7-foot aluminum and vinyl altitude simulator from Hypoxico (888.666.6521, www.hypoxico.com) for several hours each day for three weeks. “The first few hours were very uncomfortable,” he says about his time in the low-oxygen chamber, which he set initially to approximate 10,000 feet. “But after about a week and a half, I felt I could sit there all day and not notice it.”

Hypoxico has been building altitude simulators since 1995, but its project with Wiese marked the first time the New York company had installed one of its units in an office. The simulator, which Hypoxico set up to envelop Wiese’s desk, enabled the outdoorsman to acclimatize for his Mexico ascents while going about his everyday business. In addition to the unit used by Wiese (beginning at $15,000), Hypoxico produces a smaller, tentlike system (from $4,000) that can be installed over a bed so users can acclimatize in their sleep.

From Around the Web...
You might have noticed that vinyl is cool again, but you’ve never seen turntables quite like these…
guide to the most exquisite quality that personal audio has to offer…
The revolutionary Sensory Gateway manipulates all five human senses to create true virtual reality…
The architect-designed Zemi Aria from Francesco Pellisari is a sensation for the eyes and ears.
If you aren’t seeing the game on one of these 4K TVs, you still have time to run out and get one…
From a 1,000 hp electric supercar to viable virtual reality, these boundary-pushing innovations...
Photo by Cordero Studios/corderostudios.com
At less than 1 nanometer, the diaphragm of the HiFiMan HE1000 planar magnetic headphones (hifiman....
For this gift, Robb Report has assembled a Bang & Olufsen entertainment system (about $129,000...
Photo by Cordero Studios/corderostudios.com
The HiFiMan HE1000s and other high-quality headphones cannot perform at their intended levels when...