It would be easy to imagine that after centuries of traverses, treks, and summits there would be no firsts left. For explorers, finding new ground to cross is almost as difficult as the actual crossing. But that's not stopping anyone: Only a month in, this already looks to be a banner year for elite adventurers, who plan to walk the length of a great river, motorcycle in a very large circle, and summit one of the most dangerous mountains on Earth. Here are the expeditions we'll be watching.
John Cantor and Evan Howard's winter Brooks Range crossing
After successfully crossing Alaska's Brooks Range in 2012, Aussie John Cantor decided the journey wasn't hard enough for his liking. Now he's doing it again, in winter. If that doesn't sound like a substantially different expedition, keep in mind that temperatures are likely to drop to around 150 degrees below zero with wind chill. Joined by adventurer pal Evan Howard, Cantor expects to finish the nearly 1,000-mile traverse in about two months, dragging more than 100 pounds over the jagged mountains. Cantor suffers from anxiety and is using the hike to raise money for mental health nonprofit Beyond Blue. The duo departed on January 7, when the area was enjoying five hours of sunlight a day.
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