Category archives for Adventurers of the Year

See our favorite classic, emerging, and secret ski towns. On March 1, the very first day of 38-year-old ski mountaineer Greg Hill’s own version March Madness—to climb and ski 100,000 vertical meters (300,000+ feet) in just 31 days—he took his two kids, ages 7 and 8, to their first summit on British Columbia’s 8,086-foot Mount Mackenzie.…

Austrian climber David Lama was transformed by his experience on Cerro Torre. As he said in his Adventurer of the Year profile, “Cerro Torre will always be a special mountain to me. It changed me from a sport climber into an alpinist.” After five expeditions to the region in order to complete the first free ascent…

Shannon Galpin was honored as a National Geographic Adventurer of the Year in 2013 for her work in Afghanistan. She will be returning to Afghanistan on Monday to distribute 50 bikes, cycling clothing, and gear to the Afghan Women’s National Cycling Team and to set up the country’s first mountain bike team. Follow her adventures on Twitter…

See more about Everest. The 2014 Everest climbing season is upon us and teams have already begun their treks to base camp. Each season has its own surprises and headlines, with last year’s “Everest fight” stirring a media blitz. The 2014 season will see some  changes, with new regulations in place to attempt to reduce…

Even after all the magazine covers and films, Alex Honnold still lives in his van—though now it’s hooked up with solar power. And last week Alex and fellow climber Cedar Wright departed on a solar-focused adventure for Sufferfest 2—a month of biking, camping, and climbing through the Southwest that will culminate in bringing solar power to Navajo…

The first night of the 22nd Piolets d’Or, Kazakh climber Denis Urubko summed it up: Mountains (and oceans) are the last wild places on Earth. We go to these places to remember we are humans in nature, to seek lessons from the wild, and to get away from the trappings of human civilization. But as humans…

Cerro Torre is such a difficult climb that only the climbers themselves can document the upper reaches. “The more remote my expeditions became, the more important it was for  me to document them myself,” says 23-year-old Austrian climber David Lama. See what went into filming the Adventurer of the Year‘s historic first free ascent of Patagonia’s…

Climber Matt Moniz, with his dad Mike, climbed to all the highest points in the 50 states in 43 days, a feat which made him one of our Adventurers of the Year—and our youngest honored Adventurer ever. On April 3 I’m off to Nepal to begin an expedition I’ve been dreaming about most of my…

Temperatures suddenly drop and clouds dominate the skyline. Light rain morphs to flurries. The wind gains strength driving snow sideways through the canyon we’ve called home for the last week. Some hoods go up, but other than that no one seems to notice. It’s business as usual on the last day of the 2nd Annual…

Diana Nyad was recently named an Adventurer of the Year for becoming the first person to swim from Cuba to Florida. She is currently making turns on the television show Dancing With the Stars. We hope you will vote for her! The common question these days is “How does the Cuba Swim compare to Dancing With the…

Climbing in Patagonia can be a weather waiting game. But when the conditions are unsuitable on the peaks, adventures abound in the climbing gateway town of El Chaltén, Argentina. Here we see David Lama, one of our 2013 Adventurers of the Year, enjoying a little R+R before making his historic first free ascent of Cerro…

In webisode #2 from the film Cerro Torre: A Snowball’s Chance in Hell, Austrian climber David Lama, one of our Adventurers of the Year, explains the history of the Compressor Route and the difference between aid climbing and free climbing. Be sure to click on “CC” in the video player on the lower right to get…

Austrian climber David Lama‘s incredible natural abilities to ascend things showed at an early age. After mastering sport climbing, David, now 23 years old, shifted his focus and aspirations to free climbing and alpinism, eventually to claim one of the greatest free ascents in history—the first free ascent of the Southeast Ridge on Patagonia’s Cerro…

Adventure educators Amy and Dave Freeman have built their lives around using technology to bring outdoor adventure into the classroom through their organization Wilderness Classroom. The Minnesotan couple, two of our Adventurers of the Year, just completed their three-year, nearly 12,000-mile North American Odyssey, which engaged more than 85,000 schoolkids. Here, learn more about their story and how they…

Alex Honnold just did his first climb in Patagonia. And it was pretty spectacular. He teamed up with Tommy Caldwell to make the first ascent of the Fitz Traverse, which involved climbing seven peaks in five days along the Cerro Fitz Roy ridge line. Honnold and Caldwell waited for their weather window, then covered three miles…

We just heard back from Alex Honnold, who has been busy in Patagonia pulling off an epic feat of alpinism with Tommy Caldwell—a complete traverse of the Fitzroy Massif in five days. The Internet connection in Patagonia is so slow that Alex has not actually seen the video everyone is talking about of his ropeless…

We take our selection of the Adventurers of the Year very seriously. We want to find just the right mix of people who are pushing the boundaries of what’s possible in the world of adventure, whether that’s through feats of elite outdoor athleticism and exploration or giving back to the community in authentic ways. We…

A few days ago snowboarder Kevin Pearce, one of our Adventurers of the Year honorees, arrived in Russia to help carry the torch to the Sochi Olympics. This is his first Winter Games. Kevin was destined for Olympic podium glory until a crash on the half pipe left him with a traumatic brain injury—just before…

These videos both involve a balloon rising to the edge of space with cameras pointing back at Earth. One project was very high budget. The other decidedly low. Yet they each provide a new perspective. First, we have a deeper look at the “space dive” by People’s Choice Adventurer of the Year Felix Baumgartner—who was…

Thanks for voting for the People’s Choice Adventurer of the Year every day through January 31. A very special live web event is happening today—and you can be part of it. Five inspiring people are coming together to be part of our Adventurers of the Year Google+ Hangout at 1 pm EST. Follow the event…

The multifaceted Renan Ozturk, one of our previous Adventurers of the Year, has many stories to share—even more than we realized. We first came to know Renan years ago when he was a new North Face-sponsored climber who liked to paint and animate mountainscapes while on expeditions. That love of visuals and storytelling led him to…

Last night ABC News’s Nightline featured the story of Sano Babu Sunuwar and Lakpa Tsheri Sherpa, our 2012 People’s Choice Adventurers of the Year.  The two Nepali friends completed The Ultimate Descent by climbing Everest, paragliding down, and kayaking to the Indian Ocean. It was a source-to-sea expedition beyond compare. And they did it without…

What does it take to ride the world’s most daunting and dangerous waves? Or walk from Siberia to Australia—completely alone? Our 2014 Adventurers of the Year have pushed boundaries, gone to the extremes, and broken world records. What would you ask them, if you had the chance? Get ready, here’s your opportunity. We will host our…

We recently launched a new weekly video series called Zero to 60, a 60-second edit of cinematic adventure video released every Tuesday in partnership with our friends at Camp 4 Collective. This week’s video features climber Alex Honnold deep-water soloing in Oman, which is the subject of a feature story in the January 2014 issue…

In the modern era of adventure sports and exploration it should be no surprise that one of the world’s leading freeride snowboarders would seek out the most extreme alpine lines on the planet. In 2012, when champion slope shredder Xavier De Le Rue set his sights on the continent of Antarctica, he was looking for…