Eddie Bauer Kayak Athlete
Eddie Bauer Kayak Athlete
EXPEDITION INSTIGATOR WITH MORE THAN 132 FIRST DESCENTS OF RIVERS IN 36 COUNTRIES
When Ben Stookesberry calls with a plan, a select few pick up the phone. The reason is that Stookesberry has been the expedition instigator for more than 132 first descents on sections of Class V or Class VI rivers in 36 countries. His wingman is usually Eddie Bauer teammate Chris Korbulic, with whom he has survived complicated epics on ridiculous missions, from Central Africa and Pakistan to Patagonia and Bhutan, as well as a recent run of the cave-fed rivers of the Iso Gorge in Papua New Guinea and a cold trip to the remote river stretches in the Svalbard Archipelago of northern Norway, where Stookesberry ran a 65-foot glacial waterfall into the Arctic Ocean.
A talented filmmaker and visual storyteller, Stookesberry won a Best Adventure Film award at the Banff Film Festival for his 2011 film Kadoma and received critical acclaim for Walled In, which chronicled his first descent of the Marble Fork. His films have appeared at Mountainfilm in Telluride and Teva Mountain Games in Vail. His next project revolves around a 2014 trip, during which he partnered with Chris Korbulic and three other kayakers to paddle nearly 700 miles in white-water longboats through Northern Labrador’s Torngat Wilderness to complete the first no-portage descent of the 18 waterfalls of the Nachvak River.
For more than one hundred episodes, Stookesberry has filmed, produced, and starred in the Brazilian reality TV show Kaiak with Korbulic and Pedro Oliva, generating massive national interest in the sport of white-water kayaking. He was named adventurer of the year by National Geographic in 2007 and 2015, was named by Men's Journal one of the 25 Most Adventurous Men of the last 25 years, is featured regularly in Outside Magazine, and has appeared in countless media outlets, including the Wall Street Journal, NBC’s Today show, the Daily Mail, and the BBC. Closer to (Chico omission because my new home is Missoula, MT) home, he has logged the first single-day descent of the Middle Kings and Kings Canyon in CA, and reportedly poached the first descent of Falls Creek into the Hetch Hetchy reservoir. He has recently been inducted into the Kayaking Hall of Fame and is a closet fan of Hall & Oates.
• 2x National Geographic Adventurer of the Year (2007, 2015)
• Winner of Best Adventure Film award at the Banff Film Festival for Kadoma (2011)
• 132 first descents of Class V and VI white water in 36 countries
• Inducted into the Kayaking Hall of Fame (2010)