Ellsworth and Emery Kolb and Jimmy Chin

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Adrenalin and extreme adventure go hand in hand. Some might toss a bit of insanity into  the mix as well. Add a camera, and you have some of the most exhilarating photography ever seen. In their effort to showcase expeditions and exploration, National Geographic editors featured adventure photography from the early days of publications, including work by the Kolb Brothers.

Early practitioners of extreme adventure photography, Emery and Ellsworth Kolb scaled every inch of the Grand Canyon that they could reach starting in 1901. Dangling from a single rope 300 feet above ground to make an aerial photograph of the canyon was all in a day’s work for the fearless brothers. The two continued taking risks and photographing the canyon for the next 70 plus years.

Today, Jimmy Chin continues the tradition of adrenalin-fueled adventure photography. And he does so with stunning results. Mountaineer and filmmaker, Chin takes extreme physical risks to reach unbounded heights for the sheer joy of it all.  He thrives on the exhilaration of the physical and mental challenge—and this shows in his photographs. He and Alex Honnold, considered the most daring climber in the world, frequently climb together. It is Chin with his camera who documents Honnold’s record-breaking feats, sharing image after image of breathtaking adventures. As Honnold achieved his free solo climb of Yosemite’s El Capitan, Chin was there by his side, filming the mind-blowing event.