This photo is featured in the Buyer’s Guide 2013 issue of Canoe & Kayak Magazine which can be purchased here.

Photo: Charlie Munsey

Willie and Johnnie Kern

Willie and Johnnie Kern in Senchen La Pass, Tibet.

In the first two weeks of February 2002, seven of the world's best and boldest paddlers completed the first descent of Tibet's Upper Tsangpo Gorge. The team stopped at a place where, as expedition photographer Charlie Munsey recalls, "the river literally drops off the edge of the earth." Here, Willie and Johnnie Kern take the only way out, an arduous 5,000-foot ascent from the canyon floor to a mountain pass called Senchen La. The expedition, led by Scott Lindgren, was the defining accomplishment of a group of paddlers, and an era, that could be described as whitewater's Greatest Generation. Read more about this storied expedition in Canoe & Kayak's March 2013 40th Anniversary Issue.