Earlier this year when Tommy Caldwell and Kevin Jorgeson conquered the first free ascent of El Capitan in Yosemite National Park (California), extreme sports and the thirst for adventure took center stage in hearts and minds around the world. From BASE jumpers and street lugers to skydivers and cliff divers, there are some serious risk-takers out there.

For those of us who are more spectators than athletes, we can vicariously participate through live feeds and online video as well as programming on specialized cable channels dedicated to sports which feature speed, heights, danger and adrenaline.

And then there are ways to combine travel and extreme sports, as this article from the New York Times points out, writing about competitions such the All Nations Indian Relay Championship in which riders jump from one horse to another while galloping at high speeds.

Or perhaps partake in one of the “Top 10 Dives” in the world, as ranked by Scuba Travel.

Challenges, thrills and adventure! Why and how do we seek it? While many think of the typical niche athlete as a male, 20s to early 40s, check out these female adventurers with awesome track records on ESPN’s “Top 50 Female Athletes in Action Sports”.

And just to note that the only women-only off-road rally in the world, the 2015 Rallye Aicha des Gazelles du Maroc is underway as we write.

The rally website describes the concept in part as: “Every Gazelle, both amateur and professional alike, leaves this adventure forever changed after pushing herself to the limit, facing herself in an environment that is a far reach from her challenging daily life as a woman, and sharing a sense of solidarity with her teammate and the other Gazelles.

“You need talent, determination, courage, solidarity and a sense of sharing to take part in our event. If this describes you, then you are ready to live up to our motto, ‘Sharing true values’. “

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