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All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.

- JRR Tolkien


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Adventurers & Explorers

May 01, 2018

5 French Founders Visit Greenland to Traverse the World’s Largest Island

The Outdoor Journal has been updating our readers as to the progress of Engages, which you can read here.

WRITTEN BY

Davey Braun

During May, five French entrepreneurs will team up to cross the toughest terrain of the world’s largest island when they visit Greenland – a total of 700km in 30 days. We’ll track their progress with updates they send us during their expedition.

The strong bond of entrepreneurship unites us. We know the sacrifices and commitment that it takes to found a company: knowing how to push the limits with both team spirit and great humility.

“That which does not kill us, makes us stronger.” — Friedrich Nietzsche

Our ambition is to draw a parallel between life in extreme conditions with great physical exertion and the entrepreneurial experience. Our ambition is to show that five individuals who are bound by the passion of entrepreneurship are able to accomplish the wildest challenges. Our ambition is to show that as a team we go further than going it alone, and also that we can always push a bit further.

The Challenge

➔ 1 guide.
➔ 5 entrepreneurs.
➔ 30 days.
➔ 67th parallel north along the Arctic Circle.
➔ 80 kg per person.
➔ 700 km of cross-country skiing.
➔ -40 ° C average temperature.
➔ 30th April to 30 May.
➔ Kangerlussuaq to Isortoq

The Team

Maxime LAINÉ – 27
Founder of Weesurf in 2015, an app that allows each surfer, whatever his level, to find the best place and the best time to go surfing. When he has a goal in mind, even the most unreachable, he always finds ways to make it happen. Amateur gliding, surfing, skiing and skateboarding since childhood, he swaps the beaches and waves for the polar cold.

Thomas TIRTIAUX – 25
Co-founder of Solen, a technology that measures sunlight from a simple picture taken with a smartphone which is used in real estate to indicate the brightness and sunshine of a property. Super creative, always full of ideas to share, for example, the expedition!

Lucas SERVANT – 27
Co-founder of Ignition Program, an HR lab that selects candidates with high potential for startup roles, and accompanies them along their career paths. As an inveterate adventurer, Lucas also follows along the Tour de France by hitchhiking.

Valentin DROUILLARD – 25
Co-founder of Wape, management tool that strengthens employee engagement for remote offices. A Reserve Lieutenant in the Army, Valentin is thirsty for human challenges in a team.

Antoine NOEL – 27
Co-founder of Japet Medical Devices, which develops medical device robotics for rehabilitation, including the first exoskeleton to relieve patients with chronic back pain and accompany in the recovery of activity. Driven by the challenges and passion of technology, Antoine sailed across the Atlantic after completing his studies at MIT.

The Guide

Bernard MULLER
An ultra-experienced French explorer, Bernard Muller first summited Nanga Parbat summit (8,125 m) in 1979. Soon after, he summited the southern pillar of the Dhaulagiri (8167 m) in 1980 and, in 1981, the western face of Manaslu (8,163 m). Two major successes. During the following years, Bernard topped the southern face of Aconcagua (highest peak in Latin America 6,962 m) in alpine technique and the first without oxygen in the corridor southeast of Kangchenjunga (8,505 m). He led participants several times to the summits of the Gasherbrum II (8,035 m), Everest (8,848 m), Cho Oyu (8,201 m) and Shishapangma (8,027 m). Bernard turned his focus to the polar lands and successfully crossed Greenland three times (1997, 1998 and 2017), Iceland (1999) and Baffin Island (2000).

Traversing the World’s Largest Island

Greenland is an autonomous province of the Kingdom of Denmark. It is also geographically linked to the North American continent. When you visit Greenland, you are visiting the largest island of the planet, with an area of some 2.2 million square kilometers, of which only 410,000 square kilometers are not covered by the ice sheet. Its most northerly tip is just 740 kilometers from the North Pole. At this time of the year, the temperature can vary from 0 ° C to -40 ° C and daylight shines almost continuously, as there are only 4 hours of darkness per day.

Inspiration

The team is inspired to visit Greenland by intrepid explorer Mike Horn, and his thoughts, “we dream too often with our eyes closed, we have to dream with our eyes open.”

Read Next On The Outdoor Journal: Taming the Munga-Thirri Desert with Mike Horn.

Your Own Trip to Greenland

Discovering Ice Sheets in Greenland
Greenland, the land of the midnight sun, has one the world’s most expansive ice sheets, second in size only to Antarctica. Here, in the last frontier for many experienced travelers, lie the uninhabited and lonely stretches of nature at its most magnificent. The world has long glamorized Greenland for being destitute; remember Walter Mitty’s famous landing in a crumbling Nuuk? In reality, the country offers up a mix of mystery, history, scenery and wildlife—redefining Arctic cool. Book now on The Outdoor Voyage.

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Adventure Travel

Jul 31, 2018

Kayaking’s Elite Return to India at the Malabar River Festival

During the week of July 18th to 22nd, the Malabar River Festival returned to Kerala, India with one of the biggest cash prizes in whitewater kayaking in the world.

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WRITTEN BY

Brooke Hess

A $20,000 purse attracted some of the world’s best kayakers to the region for an epic week battling it out on some of India’s best whitewater.

The kayaking events at Malabar River Festival were held on the Kuttiyadi River, Chalippuzha River, and the Iruvajippuzha River, in South India on the Malabar Coast. The festival was founded and organized by Manik Taneja and Jacopo Nordera of GoodWave Adventures, the first whitewater kayaking school in South India.

Photo: Akash Sharma

“Look out for these guys in the future because there are some future stars there”

One of the goals of the festival is to promote whitewater kayaking in the state of Kerala and encourage locals to get into the sport. One of the event organizers, Vaijayanthi Bhat, feels that the festival plays a large part in promoting the sport within the community.  “The kayak community is building up through the Malabar Festival. Quite a few people are picking up kayaking… It starts with people watching the event and getting curious.  GoodWave Adventures are teaching the locals.”

Photo: Akash Sharma

Vaijayanthi is not lying when she says the kayak community is starting to build up.  In addition to the pro category, this year’s Malabar Festival hosted an intermediate competition specifically designed for local kayakers. The intermediate competition saw a huge turnout of 22 competitors in the men’s category and 9 competitors in the women’s category. Even the professional kayakers who traveled across the world to compete at the festival were impressed with the talent shown by the local kayakers. Mike Dawson of New Zealand, and the winner of the men’s pro competition had nothing but good things to say about the local kayakers. “I have so much respect for the local kayakers. I was stoked to see huge improvements from these guys since I met them in 2015. It was cool to see them ripping up the rivers and also just trying to hang out and ask as many questions about how to improve their paddling. It was awesome to watch them racing and making it through the rounds. Look out for these guys in the future because there are some future stars there.”

Photo: Akash Sharma

 

“It was awesome because you had such a great field of racers so you had to push it and be on your game without making a mistake”

Vaijayanthi says the festival has future goals of being named a world championship.  In order to do this, they have to attract world class kayakers to the event.  With names like Dane Jackson, Nouria Newman, Nicole Mansfield, Mike Dawson, and Gerd Serrasolses coming out for the pro competition, it already seems like they are doing a good job of working toward that goal! The pro competition was composed of four different kayaking events- boatercross, freestyle, slalom, and a superfinal race down a technical rapid. “The Finals of the extreme racing held on the Malabar Express was the favourite event for me. It was an epic rapid to race down. 90 seconds of continuous whitewater with a decent flow. It was awesome because you had such a great field of racers so you had to push it and be on your game without making a mistake.” says Dawson.

Photo: Akash Sharma

The impressive amount of prize money wasn’t the only thing that lured these big name kayakers to Kerala for the festival. Many of the kayakers have stayed in South India after the event ended to explore the rivers in the region. With numerous unexplored jungle rivers, the possibilities for exploratory kayaking are seemingly endless. Dawson knows the exploratory nature of the region well.  “I’ve been to the Malabar River Fest in 2015. I loved it then, and that’s why I’ve been so keen to come back. Kerala is an amazing region for kayaking. In the rainy season there is so much water, and because the state has tons of mountains close to the sea it means that there’s a lot of exploring and sections that are around. It’s a unique kind of paddling, with the rivers taking you through some really jungly inaccessible terrain. Looking forward to coming back to Kerala and also exploring the other regions of India in the future.”

 

For more information on the festival, visit: http://www.malabarfest.com/

Subscribe here: https://www.outdoorjournal.com/in/subscribe/

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