Travel Writer?

OK. I’m sorry, I don’t have many facts.

I remember, vaguely, a story from my french teacher from several years back. It was about a rather prolific British travel writer or explorer (he had a significantly thick book of his compiled writings on him), who wrote first about mountain climbing (mostly India, I think) and then about ocean voyages. Apparently, on his last voyage, he was on the ocean with some friends who awoke one morning to find him comletely disappeared. The teacher said that, apparently, he realized that he was gettting pretty old, and so he decided to die at sea, or somesuch. Rather poetic, I guess.

I’m not desperate, or anything, but if anyone could tell me who this is, I’d appreciate it. Thanks.

P.S. Mods, this is cross posted in GQ. I’m sorry if that’s against the rules, but, really, my question’s pretty mundane.