National Geographic together with The North Face are on an expedition to find the highest peak in southeast Asia. A group of six seasoned adventurers are traveling primarily on foot with some boat and motorcycle assistance deep into the jungle on a trip that will require two weeks of unsupported hiking and travel in each direction. The group is so off the grid they are carrying their own stash of anti venom to treat a possible, or even likely, poisonous snake bite by any one of a kaleidoscope of colorful and lethal vipers, cobras and kraits. Mark Jenkins, a seasoned writer of adventure non-fiction is documenting the group’s trip with regular posts at adventureblog.nationalgeographic.com
This expedition has all the hallmarks of real exploration and is reminiscent of expeditions of the 19th and early 20th centuries. The objective is vague, the route is potentially deadly and what the outcome will be is far from clear.
Below is a link to the first post, including a very closeup picture of Trimeresurus albolabris, the lethal white lipped pit viper, which expedition member Hilaree O’Neill nearly stepped on.
Myanmar Climb: Welcome to the Jungle – Dispatch #1 – Beyond the Edge.
Walking around the world I would say is the ultimate way to use one’s feet. Walk through desert. Walk over mountain ranges. Walk through war zones. Walk through history, geography, geopolitics, anthropology, sociology. Walk through humankind.
Paul Salopek, a Pulitzer Prize winning journalist has begun his trek Out of Eden, the name of his project by walking from his starting part along the great rift valley in Ethiopa. He is headed across Africa, the Middle East, Asia, across the Bearing Strait into Alaska and down the west coast of the United States to his ultimate destination, the southern tip of Chile. But Mr. Salopek’s destination is not ultimately one of mileage. Rather it is one of understanding human history, as it was and as it is today.
Salopek is posting a ‘milestone’ on-line every 100 miles which consists of photos of the ground, sky and people and an audio recording of where he stands along with a blog post. His seven year journey will cover about 21,000 miles on this journey sponsored in part by National Geographic as well as news organizations including The Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting and the Nieman Foundation at Harvard.
The journalist adventurer can be followed by reading blog and twitter posts, receiving emails or visiting the Outofedenwalk.com web site. On a recent twitter post Mr. Salopek wrote: “On walking and concentration: We were not meant to sit still.”