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When you grow up on Baffin Island, Canada, with the Arctic Ocean as your backyard and world-renowned polar explorers for parents, dreaming up expeditions just becomes the norm. Sarah McNair-Landry and her brother Eric have spent their entire lives exploring untracked corners of their Arctic home. The duo received a National Geographic Young Explorers Grant…

When I was 11, my family bought a rattletrap cabin and 2.5 areas in the woods of Pennsylvania — at auction, for just $3,300. The price should give you a clue how much work was involved making the place even remotely livable, and most of the pictures we have of that era show my dad…

See more gear reviews in our Elements Gear Guide >> Upon seeing the Barebones Canyon Lantern for the first time, music fans of a certain age might find themselves singing a Cowboy Junkies lyric: “We are miners, hard rock miners … .” In fact, they might find themselves having a hard time not singing it: The…

“‘Cold’ is a word that holds no meaning in a blizzard in the Antarctic Ocean. It was very difficult to breathe. I was gasping for air. I kept telling myself to keep calm. I’ve never experienced anything like it, ” says extreme swimmer Lewis Pugh of his record-setting swim. Pughs hands were warmer when they were stroking through minus-one-degree…

Fifty years ago, on March 7, 1965, 600 marchers protesting for voting equality left the Brown Chapel A.M.E. Church in Selma headed for the state capitol in Montgomery. Before they had even left town, the peaceful marchers were met at the Edmund Pettus Bridge with police beatings and tear gas. That violence, which was televised across…

“Climbing for me is more than a sport,” writes mountaineering legend Reinhold Messner in his latest book, My Life at the Limit. “Climbing is all about freedom, the freedom to go beyond all the rules and take a chance, to experience something new, to gain insight into human nature… For me, imagination is more important…

See more gear reviews in our Elements Gear Guide >> The modern obsession with sneakers eluded me until I started paying closer attention to New Balance. Granted, the Massachusetts company has been making shoes for more than 100 years, but for at least the last decade and a half it’s been designing shoes that seem to…

Millions of years ago, layers of sand were deposited by rivers, which turned into sandstone. Glaciers later transformed the sandstone into several miles of dramatic cliffs and caves along Lake Superior’s southern shore. Superior’s wind, waves, and ice continue to sculpt the sandstone caves of the Apostle Island National Lakeshore in Wisconsin. In the summer,…

Whatever public profile Tommy Caldwell and Kevin Jorgeson had before they free climbed the Dawn Wall of El Capitan, it certainly got a lift once they reached the top. One of their first encounters with an adoring fan took place directly in the aftermath of their ascent, in the Yosemite Lodge cafeteria where the two climbers…

See more products in our Spring Essentials gear guide. The Adidas Ultra Boost road running shoe is among the best of spring’s new models—an extremely comfortable, extremely nuanced runner so perfectly engineered and built that you can pull it out of the box, slip it on, and bang off ten miles of training without an…