Pangaea Expedition: 250 young explorers committed to saving the planet

In 2008, Mike Horn met with Paul Petzl to discuss an entirely different type of project than his prior adventures. He presented the idea of bringing youth from all nationalities with him across the planet to discover the beauty and fragility of our natural environment.

Pangaea - Young explorers © Erwan Le Lann - Petzl

A different type of project, but just as ambitious. During all the years of solo exploration, Mike Horn gained a unique understanding of our planet across all latitudes. He witnessed scenes of excessive pollution, climate change, and lack of respect for our natural biosphere, but also saw the symbiosis that still exists between flora and fauna in areas far beyond the world’s cities.


Mike Horn: explorer and expedition leader

mike horn - pangaea

The idea came to him to share his years of experience with future generations; they will have to shoulder and manage the environmental problems that we are starting to see today. By pointing out the damage created by our current behavior and the potential solutions identified through "Pangaea", Mike Horn would like to plant the environmental seed in the hope that these young explorers will come up with a sustainable approach to living on this planet. The project, called "Pangaea", brought together more than 200 young explorers from around the world, all between the ages of 15 to 20. The program ran for three years straight with twelve expeditions to the most remote and extraordinary places on the planet.


Petzl, official technical partner of the "Pangaea" program

Convinced by the merit of this unique project, Petzl signed on as an official "Pangaea" partner. As a manufacturer of safety equipment, the partnership consisted of helping Mike Horn, Team Petzl member:

  • to organize certain stages of the expeditions via our international network,
  • to ensure safety when the young explorers were moving through and over terrain familiar to Petzl, by providing equipment and training from high-mountain guide, Erwan Lelann, Petzl’s International Events & Sponsorship manager.


Today, the outcome has been more than positive

250 youth from 110 countries brought together through an incredibly close-knit network called, "Pangaea". These young explorers, having gone through such an incredibly enriching experience, are now putting their ideas together. They are working on projects as a group, planning actions, and responding to requests for additional projects… This "Pangaea" network is becoming increasingly active as the weeks and months go by. If, during the first few years, imagining some form of outcome was difficult, today there is an army of youth filled with hope and working hard to make a better life for themselves and the entire planet.

November 2008, “Pangaea” lifts anchor

pangaea expedition - mike horn

Base camp was aboard an incredible 105-foot (35 meters) long aluminum sailboat called the "Pangaea", specifically designed and fabricated for this program. It is capable of navigating across the world’s seas through any weather, of carrying 25 people aboard, of transforming into a media center, of breaking through ice and of being grounded at low tide...

December 2012, return to port

pangaea expedition finale © Dmitry Sharomov / Mike Horn

"Pangaea" returned to its starting point, the port in Monaco, three years after leaving in order to celebrate this long adventure. The expeditions took place one after the other, starting with Antarctica, then New Zealand, the island of Borneo, the east coast of India, Pakistan, Mongolia, Kamchatka, the North Pole, Baffin Island, the southeast coast of the USA, the Amazon River, and South Africa.


Full expedition list: Young Explorer Program


August 2011

pangaea canada © d-sharomovmike-horn.jpg

November 2011

pangaea usa © d-sharomov-mike-horn.jpg

April 2012

pangaea amazonia ©d-haromov-mike-horn.jpg

July 2012

pangaea africa © d-sharomovmike-horn.jpg



View all photos...


From "Pangaea" to "Panthalassa," the adventure continues

The first part of project "Pangaea" has come to an end. However, a broader network, and an even more ambitious project, called "Panthalassa," will now take over where the first left off. Mike Horn’s goal today is to establish one "Pangaea" center per continent, each focused on a specific topic such as water, social issues, coral…
"Panthalassa" will also be a new 70-meter catamaran type boat, pulled by kites and wingmasts, capable of carrying up to 100 people and allowing all types of research on the seas and oceans of the world..


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