Posted by: Omar C. Garcia | September 1, 2014

The Adventure Addict

Swiss explorer Mike Horn may very well be the most interesting man in the world. Unlike Jonathan Goldsmith, the debonair actor who plays the Most Interesting Man in the World in the Dos Equis beer commercials, Horn has an impressive resumé of accomplishments. The 48 year-old adventure addict has climbed the world’s tallest mountains, swam the length of the Amazon solo and unsupported, circumnavigated the earth at the Equator, walked to the North Pole in winter, and more. Horn thrives on tough challenges.

Mike Horn
Horn’s next big adventure begins this month. He will embark on a circumnavigation of the planet via the prime meridian and international date line — a 25,000-mile trek that will take him across both poles. He plans to travel all 360 degrees in 360 days. How will he do it?

Horn will sail a 105-foot ketch, the Pangaea, from Monaco to South Africa where he will pick up a four-man crew to accompany him to Antarctica. Once he reaches Antarctica, Horn will set off on skis, dragging a 450-pound supply laden sledge 3,600 miles across the frozen continent. On the opposite side of Antarctica, Horn will meet Pangaea and sail north through Alaska’s Bering Strait. He will then jump ship and begin another grueling walk across the frozen north. Horn will drag a modified sea kayak over pressure ridges and melting sea ice all the way to Greenland where he will board Pangaea and sail back to his starting point.

I have no doubt that, barring something beyond his control that might stop him, Horn will accomplish his goal. In many ways, he has prepared a lifetime for this challenge. Every previous adventure, every summit, every swim stroke down the Amazon, and every hard-won mile have all contributed to preparing him to circumnavigate the planet via the North and South poles. The risk of failure will stalk him every mile of his journey but so will the hope and possibility of success. One thing is certain, it would take a lot to stop a determined man like Horn.

I enjoy reading and following the adventures of guys like Horn. They remind me that we are capable of doing so much more than we think possible. And, they challenge me to have bigger and bolder dreams. Horn admits, “My dreams still scare me. If they don’t they’re not big enough.” He’s right. There is something good about being scared and attempting a task that has a high risk of failure. I hope that Horn accomplishes his goal. But, if not, I will still admire him for dreaming big and attempting something epic.

We don’t have to swim the length of a river or climb a mountain, but we should endeavor to go beyond the usual stuff of our lives. Each of us should consider how we can push ourselves to attempt something that will take us a little farther than we’ve ever been. That may mean loving a little more, forgiving someone when it’s hard to do so, or actually taking on some physical challenge that will cause your muscles to ache. Whatever it is, trust God to help you do something that will scare you and take you farther than you ever thought possible.

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