Twenty of the world's top athletes and explorers share their wildest dream trips—a dazzling list of never attempted feats daunting to even these world-class competitors. For the rest of us, consider their must-do adventures—and start planning. —Kate Siber

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Photo: Andrew Skurka climbing boulders along the Arrigetch Creek
Adventurers Andrew Skurka (left) and Roman Dial hike over the Arrigetch Peaks in Alaska.

Photograph by Michael Christopher Brown, National Geographic

Andrew Skurka

Long-Distance Hiker

After logging his 4,679th mile of a 176-day odyssey across Alaska and the Yukon, one might think Andrew Skurka would call it good. But despite the fact that he had never felt so exposed or scared in his life, he’d set off again without hesitation.

“The trip I’d like to do again is a traverse of the Canadian and Alaskan Arctic across the Yukon and northern Alaska,” says Skurka. The difference this time, he says, would be adding more of the wild and remote Brooks Range. “That runs about 1,500 miles and you’d cross one road and you’d go probably never see people unless you were in towns. It’s such an amazing trip.”

Of course, the objective hazards are numerous: wild storms, falling rocks, grizzly bears, river crossings, and hair-raisingly steep slopes, to name a few. Skurka, evidently, takes it all in stride.

Next: See Andrew Skurka's Must-Do Trip: Hike the Pacific Northwest Trail

See the Ultimate Adventure Bucket List 2011

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Explorer Bio

Photo: Self portrait of Andrew Skurka
Andrew Skurka

Long-Distance Hiker

Hiker Andrew Skurka has hiked, skied, and pack-rafted 30,000+ miles at record speeds from the Appalachian Trail to Alaska. In 2005, he completed a 7,778-mile coast-to-coast trek from Quebec to Washington, and in 2010, he finished a 4,679-mile overland route through Alaska and the Yukon in 176 days, hitting several mountain ranges and eight national parks along the way.