The 25 Most Adventurous Men of the Past 25 Years

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Doug Tompkins (1943–2015)
Jorge Uzon10/25

Doug Tompkins (1943–2015)

Kris Tompkins, on her husband, the legendary North Face founder and environmentalist:

"Doug climbed and skied and kayaked all over the world, but his greatest adventures came later, when he devoted himself to saving wild land in South America. Doug was a great bush pilot who spent thousands of hours in his single-engine Husky, looking for places to protect. He saw a beautiful landscape as a masterpiece, so he protected natural habitat the way you would protect a Picasso — by putting it in a museum. Over the years, we set aside more than 2 million acres in Chile and Argentina, in what will eventually become 10 national parks. We lived in a lot of these places while we worked on them, so daily life was an adventure by itself. But Doug kept doing adventures of his own — like the trip with Yvon Chouinard and Rick Ridgeway on Lago General Carrera in Chile in 2015. His kayak capsized, and he died of hypothermia. But Doug's death has only made me more fierce in pursuing our conservation dreams. We lived like gypsies down here together, going from project to project, but I can't imagine doing anything else."

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