Meet the 2016 Nat Geo Adventurers of the Year

In what has become a bit of an annual tradition, National Geographic has revealed its selections for the 2016 Adventurers of the Year. As usual, the list consists of a group of people who have mad unique contributions in the area of exploration, conservation, and pushing the boundaries of human endurance. On top of that, these men and women just happen to be downright awesome. This year, ten individuals – and an entire ship’s crew – were honored with this distinction.

Some of the people who made the list include climber Colin Haley, who put up some of the most demanding and impressive climbs of the entire year, paraglider Antoine Girard, who wowed us with his high altitude flight from Broad Peak, and cave diver Krzysztof Starnawski, who spent 20 years exploring a submerge cave only to discover it is the deepest on the planet. They’re joined on the list by the crew of the Hōkūle‘a, a Polynesian voyaging canoe that is sailing around the world using only the starts for navigation.

As usual, I won’t spoil the entire list, because part of the fun is learning who made the cut and earned the title of “Adventurer of the Year.” Needless to say however, the group is made of individuals who are all deserving of that honor, as each has done some amazing things throughout 2016.&

Of course, there is still the matter of determining the “People’s Choice Adventurer of the Year” as well. This is determined by online vote, with the polls closing on December 16 and the official winner being announced in January of next year. Choosing which of these individuals is most worthy of that honor is tough too, but thankfully we can all vote once a day through the deadline next month, so we can spread our support around some. To place your vote, click here and scroll to the bottom of the page.

I am fortunate enough to get the chance to nominate some adventurers for this award each year, and it is always fulfilling to see some of the ones that I selected get the nod when the final choices are announced. I want to congratulate everyone who made the list. You are an inspiration to us all.

Kraig Becker