You think today’s explorers are tough? How do you think they compare to some of the toughest in history? All things considered, modern gear, satellite communications, and better training have all helped to give today’s adventurers a leg up on those from the past.
But lets face it, some of the pioneers of exploration were incredibly resilient, resourceful, and darned near impossible to kill. You’ll find a lot of men who resemble that description on Popular Mechanics’ list of the 10 toughest old school explorer and adventurers, including a number of figures that we have written about on occasion on this blog.
I won’t spoil the whole list for you, but to give you an idea of the type of man we’re talking about here, Ernest Shackleton rightly earns a spot amongst this pantheon of incredibly tough men, as does Douglas Mawson, both of whom are polar explorers of course.
Others making the list include Tenzing Norgay, who was with Edmund Hillary when they both were the first to summit Everest, and Hugh Glass, who is the subject of the new movie The Revenant starring Leonardo DiCaprio. Glass is best known for surviving bear attack while exploring the American west, only to drag himself 200 miles over open country after he was left for dead by his companions.
Of course, there are other great examples of explorers and adventurers surviving incredibly wild experiences to come back and tell their tales. This list has six others that are certainly worthy of mentioning as well. The article is worth reading just to here a brief synopsis of each of their stories, but you’ll probably eventually want to just find out more about each of them when you can.
And who did they leave off the list? As one commenter says, what about Roald Amundsen whose polar journeys are the stuff of legend. Or Thor Heyerdahl who sailed across the South Pacific on a tiny boat called Kon-Tiki? Who got snubbed, and probably should have made the cut?
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