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When you grow up with renowned Arctic guides for parents, with all of Baffin Island, Canada, as your playground, a team of sled dogs at your disposal, and a tangle of snow kites in the garage, you are bound for big things. So when Sarah McNair-Landry and her brother, Eric, along with their friend Curtis Jones, decided to snow-kite some 1,500 miles across the Greenland ice sheet—that's like going from Boston to Miami on an uninterrupted sea of ice—no one was surprised. In awe? Now that's another matter.
To most, such a remarkable journey would be a means to equally remarkable ends, a "first" of sorts. But Sarah and Eric claim not to be motivated by records. (Though, incidentally, they did grab two: They're the first brother-sister team to cross the ice sheet, and Sarah is the youngest to do a south-to-north traverse.) Instead, Sarah insists, the goal was to inspire the next generation of explorers.
When she is not in the cold, McNair-Landry spends her time working in film. After taking digital filmmaking courses at the New York Film Academy, she has documented all of her expeditions. She recently directed a documentary on waste management issues in northern Canada that was produced by the National Film Board of Canada.
Along with her brother Eric, she was nominated for National Geographic's prestigious Adventurer of the Year 2007 Award and received the Outdoor Idol Award in 2007.