Adventure is what spurs us on as humans.
Since the dawn of time, we have had the yearning and need to explore the world and make sense of our surroundings. It is the thrill and anticipation of discovering new things and encountering extraordinary experiences that drives that remarkable sense of exploration.
Life after lockdown has definitely got us all thinking about our own personal adventures and aspirations, with the added emphasis of what is it to be completely ‘away from it all’ whilst creating lifelong memories.
At the Future Mapping Company we share this love of exploration, not only via developing our unique printed maps but by also following the endeavors of some of the UK’s most intrepid modern day explorers.
These incredible individuals continue to inspire and motivate millions of all ages, from all around the globe - including us!
Here are our selection of modern day explorers who we think truly deserve their place in history.
ON THE WATER
Known for being the first human ever to walk the entire length of the Amazon River. Former Cub and Scout, Ed Stafford graduated from Newcastle University with a BSC in Geography. Stafford went on to spend three years in the Devon and Dorset Regiment as rank of Captain before leaving the Army in 2002.
On 9th August 2010 he broke the Guinness World Record for his incredible and courageous achievement of walking the length of the Amazon. Undertaking the challenge on behalf of several charities it took 859 days for Ed to walk more than 4,000 miles. This accomplishment has been described by Sir Ranulph Fiennes as being “truly extraordinary...in the top league of expeditions past and present”.
Mollie first fell in love with mountains aged just 17 when she joined a school expedition to climb Mount Kenya. Since that moment she spent every moment working and saving to plan her next climbing expedition.
On Tuesday 16th May 2017 Mollie broke the world record for being the youngest woman in the world, and the first British woman to successfully summit both the north and south sides of Mount Everest; the world’s highest mountain. Less than three years later Mollie achieved her second world record on 10th January 2020 becoming the youngest woman in the world to ski solo from the coast of Antarctica to the South Pole.
Her achievements definitely haven't gone unrecognised with Scouts Scotland appointing Mollie Hughes as its first female president. A feat which she describes as a “total honour”.
Inspired by the adventures of Captain Robert Falcon Scott, Tom Avery knew that he wanted to travel to Antarctica and ultimately the South Pole from the early age of 7 years old. Tom is an incredible British explorer, author and motivational speaker and is best known for smashing world records in completing the Polar trilogy - the South Pole, North Pole and Greenland Crossing.
On 28th December 2002 aged 27 Tom broke the world record by becoming the youngest Brit to complete a intrepid journey to the South Pole. He broke another world record in April 2005 leading the fastest team in history to reach the North Pole. If that wasn’t enough, in 2015 Tom completed the Greenland Crossing, travelling 350 miles in a time of 9 days, 19 hours and 40 minutes.
At 10 years of age, Travis Ludlow dreamt about being the youngest pilot to fly around the world. Aged just 18 years and 149 days, Travis’ dream came true, setting a new Guinness World Record, with his 25,000 mile solo flight taking just 44 days to complete.
Flying has always been a passion of Travis who has been flying since he was 12 years old, at the age of 14 he became the UK’s youngest glider pilot. His magnificent achievement took him across Europe, through Russia and America, then Canada, Greenland and Iceland. His planned trip took him to around 60 stops across 9 countries. During his trip he ran into some serious weather at times mentioning that he had problems with ice and turbulence particularly over the Rocky Mountains “I dropped 2,000ft in 30 seconds, very scary!” he told the UK press.