VOICES Ideas and Insight From Explorers
It’s not often you see “shipwreck hunter” listed on someone’s business card or résumé, but that is indeed National Geographic grantee David Mearns’s career choice. For him, unearthing lost history and recovering centuries-old treasures is just another day at the office—or ocean, rather.
We know that leopard seals are large, formidable predators, but exactly what they’re doing below the waterline has long remained a mystery. But now, thanks to National Geographic grantee Douglas Krause, we’re getting an underwater glimpse into leopard seals’ carnivorous lives—and the seal-on-seal battles are a sight to behold.
Sơn Đoòng Cave—the largest in the world—wasn’t discovered until 2009. Now, National Geographic grantee and photojournalist Martin Edström, takes us deep inside Sơn Đoòng, as he tries to capture its overwhelming size and beauty in 360 degrees.
What’s it like to submarine dive a thousand feet underwater to an unexplored region of the Galápagos Islands? Marine conservationist and National Geographic Emerging Explorer Jessica Cramp takes us on a journey to find out.
As part of an effort to climb 45 iconic rock towers, world-renowned climbers Cedar Wright and Alex Honnold attempt to bike across the desert. They do not come out unscathed.
Geologist and National Geographic grantee Nicolas Barth was studying active faults on New Zealand’s South Island when he decided to climb down some cliffs and go for a swim. That’s when he discovered the longest sea cave in the world.
The world has had a love affair with penguins for some time now. Their tuxedo-colored feathers, waddling walk, and awkward mannerisms make them easy to adore. But get too close to penguins—chinstrap penguins in particular—and your endearing perception of these birds may be tested, given their penchant for projectile pooping and beating each other up.
After 500 years lost at sea, Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama’s Esmeralda shipwreck has been discovered, and National Geographic grantee David Mearns is recovering the infamous ship’s remarkable treasures.
“For me, it’s definitely worthwhile to live shorter, but intense,” says Vincent Colliard, a young explorer joining renowned polar explorer Børge Ousland in an endeavor to cross the world’s 20 largest glaciers. The ambitious 10-year journey is part of an effort to document climate change, an important mission for sure but one that regularly places the explorers in the path of danger.
Thousands of beluga whales congregate in Canada’s Cunningham Inlet each summer for what National Geographic Young Explorer and nature photographer Nansen Weber calls “a big beluga party.” Using a drone, Weber captures the breathtaking view from above.
What’s it like to live among modern Mongolian nomads? From throwing himself into traditional wrestling matches where he faces certain crushing defeats to riding galloping horses across the Mongolian steppe, National Geographic grantee Chris Bashinelli tries to find out.
National Geographic grantee Eduardo Cartaya and his team descend into a volcano’s toxic ice caves on a mission to protect climbers and learn about microbial life in this eerie, otherworldly environment.
National Geographic filmmaker Bob Poole encounters a giant bull elephant at the worst possible time … mating season. During this time male elephants are known for their aggressive and territorial nature, and Poole may be too close for comfort.
Climbers Alex Honnold and Cedar Wright set out to climb 45 of the most iconic towers in the American Southwest, including spires over 1,000 feet tall. But the climbs were made all the more risky when the duo was blasted by sandstorms for three weeks straight.