Past, Present & Future
The many stories within the Adventure Collection story
Every Adventure Collection trip is the legacy of a company with a rich and unique traveling heritage. One of our companies pioneered tourism and trekking in Tibet. Another created the absolute finest ski experience on earth. Yet another's inventively designed boats bridged the gap between naturalists and nature lovers.
We're proud of our travel innovations all over this bounteous world. And while Adventure Collection's story is new, the stories of the passionate men and women who created it are travel industry legends.
A brief history of Adventure Collection
|1959||Austrian immigrant Hans Gmoser forms a sprightly little company called Canadian Mountain Holidays (CMH) and in 1965 invents Heli-Skiing, one of the world's iconic backcountry adventures. (in 1978 Hans comes up with another stupendous idea, Heli-Hiking.)|
|1965||Legendary mountaineer Paul Petzoldt creates the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) as a way to inspire and train outdoor leaders in mountaineering, rock climbing, whitewater expeditions, wilderness horse packing, skiing, and backpacking.|
|1966||After a decade of viewing wildlife roaming their farmlands on the outskirts of Nairobi, Jane and Felix Pinto create Micato Safaris to provide travelers to their beloved East African homeland with authentic, thoughtful, and life-enriching African safari experiences.|
|1969||George Wendt, forms O.A.R.S. (Outdoor Adventure River Specialists), the first oar-powered commercial rafting company to guide trips on the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon. (Branching out energetically, O.A.R.S. now offers first-class rafting, sea kayaking and multi-sport adventures throughout the North American West and internationally.)|
|1979||Tom Hale founds Backroads, offering imaginative, active, expertly guided vacations for all types of travelers including couples, families and solo travelers to destinations around the globe.|
|1979||Following in the footsteps of his legendary father Lars-Eric, Sven Lindblad creates Lindblad Expeditions, whose small, beautifully designed expedition ships explore the "international capitals of wildness."|
|1981||The first American trip to the Tibetan backcountry, led by a hard-charging young woman named Jo Sanders, leads to the creation of Geographic Expeditions, now innovatively operating on all seven continents.|
|1985||Fired by a love for adventurous travel to the world's remote places, Ben Bressler creates Natural Habitat Adventures, specializing in small, naturalist-led journeys for travelers with "a thirst for encounters with nature."|
|1986||Their deep sense of place in the American West inspired Bill and Pam Bryan to form Off the Beaten Path and help travelers discover new ways of looking at their homeland. From Alaska to the southern tip of the Americas, and most countries in between, OBP offers travelers multi-activity adventure, history, and culture experiences.|
|1992||Smitten by the vast landscapes and African experiences, David and Carolyn Tett create Bushtracks Expeditions, now operating an industry-leading roster of Private Air Safaris around the world.|
|2000||Adventure Collection, an alliance of best-in-class adventure travel companies, is founded.|
Learn more about the histories of each of our companies in the Member Companies section of the site.