The educator? The astronaut? The scientist? The ultra runners? The veteran? The surfer? The filmmaker? Or perhaps the road trippers? Who will become National Geographic Adventure‘s first-ever Readers’ Choice Adventurer of the Year?
The magazine has already named eleven “Adventurers of the Year” for 2009, people who “dreamed big, pushed their limits, and made our year.” The impressive list includes the likes of
Louie Psihoyos, a photographer and former National Geographic staffer (for 17 years) who assembled a team to infiltrate a closely guarded little bay near Taiji on Japan’s Honshu Island. For years, fishermen had gathered there each fall to corral and slaughter dolphins. Louie’s film The Cove exposed the clandestine carnage and put an end to it.
NatGeo Emerging Explorer Katey Walter Anthony, adrift at sea for days in a storm-tossed boat with a failed engine during an expedition to the Siberian Arctic. Both she and her data were ultimately rescued, but what she discovered about the volume of methane trapped in thawing lakes has profound implications for global climate. (Read about another of Katey’s projects here.)
Mark Hoffmeister, severely injured in Iraq when his U.S. Army Humvee was blown to shreds by an insurgent’s bomb. He gathered a team of other disabled veterans and, with his wife Gayle, they climbed Alaska’s Denali together.
Emerging Explorer Albert Yu-Min Lin, traversing northern Mongolia’s “Forbidden Zone” on horseback, then sifting billions of pixels of satellite imagery of the region for the long-lost tomb of Genghis Khan.