American mountaineer Scott Fischer was known for scaling the highest peaks of the world, including Mt. Everest and K2, without using oxygen cans. He later became a mountain guide and co-launched his own adventure travel company Mountain Madness. He died in a blizzard while guiding a group of clients to Mt. Everest.
Best known for his bestselling novels such as Into the Wild, Jon Krakauer is not just an author who writes about the outdoors but is also a mountaineer himself. He was part of the 1996 expedition to Mt. Everest which witnessed 4 of the team members dying in a storm.
Known as the ultimate American mountain man, Jim Bridger is remembered for his exploration of the Western United States. It is believed, the illiterate fur trader was the first white man to explore the Great Salt Lake and one of the first to visit Yellowstone. He also worked as a forest guide.
Yvon Chouinard is an American environmentalist, rock climber, outdoor industry businessman, and philanthropist. He is credited with founding Patagonia, Inc., a company which aims at protecting the environment. An adventurer, Yvon Chouinard is also fond of tenkara fly-fishing, surfing, and kayaking.
Francys Arsentiev was an American mountaineer. In 1998, she became the first American woman to reach the peak of Mount Everest sans the aid of bottled oxygen. Unfortunately, she died during the descent. Prior to her ascent of the Everest, Francys Arsentiev had climbed many Russian Peaks along with her husband Sergei Arsentiev.
A passionate mountaineer and rock climber, Conrad Anker led The North Face for 26 years. He almost died of a heart attack while climbing the Lunag Ri on the borders of the Nepalese Himalayas. He is now also associated with various charitable trusts, such as the Rowell Fund for Tibet.
Dean Potter was an American alpinist, free climber, highliner, and BASE jumper. He completed many free solo ascents, hard first ascents, enchainments, and speed ascents in Patagonia and Yosemite National Park. Dean Potter died in Yosemite National Park in a wingsuit flying accident in 2015 at the age of 43.
Jimmy Chin is an American photographer, mountain athlete, author, and filmmaker. He has been a professional climber for over 20 years, during which he has taken part in expeditions around the world. His book of photography There and Back, featuring his career in the mountains, was a New York Times Best Seller. Chin is also known for his documentary, Meru.
Alex Lowe was an American mountaineer who was admired and respected by his peers for doing exceptionally well in every aspect of mountaineering. He was associated with the North Face climbing team for nearly 10 years and is credited with inspiring an entire generation of climbers. In 1995, Lowe was honored by the American Alpine Club with the Underhill Award.
At 13, Jordan Romero became the youngest person to scale the Mt. Everest and had to opt for the Tibetan side, as he wasn’t old enough to get a permit in Nepal. At 15, he became the youngest to scale the Seven Summits. He has also penned a book on his experiences.
Ed Viesturs is an American high-altitude mountaineer, author, and corporate speaker. He is the only mountaineer from the USA to have climbed all 14 eight-thousander mountain peaks in the world. In 1992, Viesturs was honored by the American Alpine Club with the David A. Sowles Memorial Award. In 2005, Ed Viesturs was adjudged National Geographic's Adventurer of the Year.
Born to a white man and a mulatto slave woman, Jim Beckwourth was practically born into slavery. While he looked like an American Indian, he was known as a “free Negro” after being released. Known as Bloody Arm, he is credited with exploring the Beckwourth Pass.
Chris Sharma is an American rock climber. He is widely regarded as one of the most influential and greatest climbers of all time. He is credited with mastering some of the most difficult routes in the history of rock climbing. Chris Sharma is also credited with shaping modern rock climbing.
Dan Osman was an American rock climber and extreme sport practitioner. He is credited with popularizing the dangerous sport of free-soloing. Dan Osman also played an important role in the development of Tahoe's Cave Rock climbing area. Osman died at the age of 35 in Yosemite National Park while performing a free-fall jump.
Richard Bass was an American mountaineer, rancher, and businessman. He was the first person to successfully climb the 'Seven Summits'. In 1985, Bass reached the peak of Mount Everest, becoming the oldest person to do so at the age of 55. A renowned businessman, Richard Bass owned Snowbird Ski Resort in Utah.
David Breashears is an American filmmaker, mountaineer, motivational speaker, and author. In 1985, Breashears became the first person from the US to summit Mount Everest more than once. David Breashears is best known for directing the 1998 documentary film, Everest.
Nick Piantanida was an American parachute jumper. In 1966, he created a record by reaching 123,500 feet with his Strato Jump II balloon, a record that stood until 2012, when it was broken by Felix Baumgartner. Nick Piantanida's life and career inspired the 2015 film Angry Sky, which was premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival.
Warren Harding was an American rock climber who is regarded as one of the most influential and accomplished rock climbers of the '50s, '60s, and '70s. In 1958, he led the first team that successfully reached the summit of El Capitan in Yosemite Valley. Warren Harding also wrote an influential book titled Downward Bound.
Pete Schoening was an American mountaineer best remembered for his participation in the 1953 American Karakoram expedition, where he prevented the loss of the entire expedition single-handedly. In 1966, Pete Schoening became one of the first mountaineers to reach the peak of Mount Vinson in Antarctica.
Jim Whittaker was a US mountaineer and mountain guide who is known for his legendary 1963 Mount Everest expedition, which was led by Norman Dyhrenfurth. He scripted history as the first American to reach the Mount Everest summit. He was later bestowed with the Hubbard Medal by John F. Kennedy.
Galen Rowell was an American adventure photojournalist, wilderness photographer, and mountaineer. He had many mountaineering achievements under his belt. At the age of 57, Rowell became the oldest person to climb El Capitan in one day. In 1977, Galen Rowell was honored with the Francis P. Farquhar Mountaineering Award by the Sierra Club.
US geologist, mining engineer, and mountaineer Clarence King was the 1st director of the US Geological Survey. While preparing his report, Systematic Geology, he found the first US glaciers. Mostly known for his exploration of the Sierra Nevada mountain range, he penned the iconic work Mountaineering in the Sierra Nevada.
US mountaineer, photographer, and cartographer Bradford Washburn was the founder-director of the Boston Museum of Science. A pioneer of aerial photography, he also created maps for ranges such as Mt. Everest. Some of his cameras, which he had dumped on a glacier due to bad weather, were recovered 85 years later, in 2022.
Barry Bishop was an American scientist, mountaineer, scholar, and photographer. In 1963, Bishop became one of the first Americans to summit Mount Everest along with Tom Hornbein, Willi Unsoeld, Lute Jerstad, and Jim Whittaker. Bishop is best remembered for his association with the National Geographic Society, where he spent most of his career working as a photographer, scientist, and writer.
US mountain man William Thomas Hamilton, also known as Wildcat Bill, trapped and hunted in the American West. He also became an Indian fighter and then worked as a scout and a sheriff, too. He is, perhaps, best remembered for his iconic memoir, My Sixty Years on the Plains.