- Victor Vescovo
- / first
- United States ()
The first man – as well as the first person overall – to reach extremes on land, sea and air is Victor Vescovo (USA), who summitted Mount Everest (the highest point on Earth) on 24 May 2010, dived to the Challenger Deep (the deepest point on Earth) on 28 April 2019, and ventured to space (crossing the 100-km-high Kármán Line) as part of the Blue Origin NS-21 mission on 4 June 2022.
Vescovo completed the trio of extreme journeys in 12 years 11 days.
Situated in the Himalayas between Nepal and Tibet, China, Mount Everest is the highest point on Earth, rising to 8,848.8 m (29,031 ft) above sea level. The Challenger Deep is located 10,934 m (35,872 ft) below sea level at the bottom of the Mariana Trench in the Pacific Ocean, south-west of Guam. The Kármán Line is generally accepted as the starting point of space, 100 km (62 mi) above Earth's surface.
The retired naval officer-turned explorer became the first person to descend to the deepest point of each of Earth's five oceans, as part of his Five Deeps Expedition between 19 December 2018 and 24 August 2019. Repeated dives of the Challenger Deep by Vescovo in his deep-sea submersible Limiting Factor has allowed reams of new data to be gathered and the precise depth of the ocean trench to be recalculated. One of those descents, on 5 March 2021, entailed Vescovo spending 4 hours 15 minutes on the seabed and covering 4.634 km (2.88 mi) – along with fellow adventurer Hamish Harding (UK) – which represents both the longest duration and longest distance traversed at full ocean depth.
On 4 June 2022, Vescovo joined the crew of Blue Origin mission NS-21, along with Victor Correa Hespanha, Katya Echazarreta, Jaison Robinson, Hamish Harding (who previously accompanied Vescovo to the Challenger Deep) and Evan Dick. Taking off from Texas, USA, at 13:25 UTC in a New Shepard rocket, the crew capsule reached an apogee of 351,185 ft (107 km) above mean sea level. The total flight lasted just over 10 minutes.