Polar fleece, titanium, and GPS have forever changed the face of exploration. Today an explorer can make a phone call from the top of Mount Everest and geo-locate himself in the thickest rain forest or the widest desert. Yet despite these advances, few modern adventures get close to the charm and romance of dispatches from the Society's earliest explorers. In those bygone days, the pages of National Geographic were as close as most people could get to high adventure and faraway landsand here's a chance to recapture them.
Introduced by brief essays that provide context and perspective, these engaging, engrossing selections speak for themselvesand trace the National Geographic Society's growth as it explored the unknown and brought it to readers eager for knowledge of ''the world and all that is in it.''
Alongside noteworthy names like Robert Peary, Amelia Earhart, and Teddy Roosevelt, other less famous travelers take us on long-forgotten trips to places few Americans had gone. We follow as ''An American Girl Cycles Across Transylvania,'' trek ''A Thousand Miles Along the Great Wall of China,'' and glide ''By Felucca Down the Nile.'' Escape into ''The Desert Road to Turkestan'', ''Mysterious Temples of the Jungle'', and ''Airplanes Come to the Isles of Spice.''