Forcing Your Hand…

Frostbitten Hands

The phrase ‘The day we stop learning is the day we die’, may be old, but it’s true. I thought after 17 years I had learned all there was to know about my frostbite injuries, but I was wrong. Though the amputations were very visible, regular treatment kept my skin grafts in good condition, and all was well with the world. The last few months however, have taught me a hard lesson in reality.

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Speaking from Sea Level…


“You’re doing what..? Speaking on a cruise ship..? Why..?” These were only some of the barrage of questions I fielded when I announced that I was going to speak on the Cunard Liner Queen Victoria. “You’re a Mountaineer and boats are at sea level..!” I certainly hope they are as I’ve never seen a liner fly, but let’s get past the obvious shock. Besides being a mountaineer, I’m also a speaker.

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TEDx Derby 2015 – Remade


After speaking at TEDx Derby in 2014, I was approached by organiser Christine Cawthorne to mentor the speakers for the 2015 event.  I was honoured to take up the challenge… Continue reading “TEDx Derby 2015 – Remade”

Wearing a Smile…


When I was a child, I watched the Saturday morning TV programme TISWAS.  It stood for ‘Today is Saturday, Watch and Smile’, but should we restrict smiling to just one day..?  I can’t remember how many countries I’ve traveled to, how many cultures I’ve encountered, or how many people I’ve met, but one thing is for sure – a smile goes a long way…

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On the Edge – July 2014


The Kendal Mountain festival has traditionally been held in November, when nights are dark and the weather (usually) wet.  Things are changing, and a new festival ‘Kendal Mountain Festival On the Edge‘ has been launched for the weekend of July 25 – 27th 2014.

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Language is full of sayings and quotes about time. ‘Time is of the essence, ‘Time is money’, ‘Time marches on’ etc.  This unending continuum drives many people’s lives at a relentless pace and without respite.  For some, it rules their lives, but should it..?

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Is modern communication destroying adventure..?

Here’s the TEDx Derby presentation I gave asking the question “Is modern communication is destroying adventure..?”  Whats do you think..?

Seven Peaks – Seven Islands part VII – Madagascar


Here’s the seventh and final miniblog about my Seven peaks – Seven Islands challenge…

From the islands capital – Antananarivo (known locally as Tana), you fly north to the coastal town of Diego Suarez to begin the trip.  Diego is one of the world’s largest natural harbours and is a quiet town, full of crumbling French colonialism, 2CV’s and graced with wonderful sunsets.  Here you depart by 4 x 4 as far as the road will go (weather and mud permitting), before the trek begins.

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Seven Peaks – Seven Islands part VI – Iran Jaya


Here’s the sixth miniblog about my Seven peaks – Seven Islands challenge…

Carstensz Pyramid (4884m-16023ft) is a classic in the mountaineering world.  First sited in 1623 by Dutch explorer Jan Carstensz, it is the highest island peak in the world.

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Seven Peaks – Seven Islands part V – Sumatra


Here’s the fifth miniblog about my Seven peaks – Seven Islands challenge…

Climbing Gunung Kerinci is one thing, but just getting there is another.  The bus journey from Padang can be anything between six and nine hours, and crosses the spine of Sumatra.  Be prepared for an arduous, but hilarious time!  You usually arrive in the village of Kersik Tua after dark, but the dawn brings extensive views of well manicured tea plantations and the peak itself – cloud permitting.  Rain and hailstorms are not uncommon here as you are already at 1500m.

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Is modern communication destroying adventure..?


Technology has entered our modern lives with a vengeance.  Whether we like it or not, the digital age has crossed the globe and there seems little escaping it.  I recently spoke at TEDx Derby, and challenged an audience of creative and technology driven people to think differently about the umbilical cord of the mobile phone, wi-fi and worldwide web…

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Things don’t always go to plan…


I wonder how many times you have made plans, only to find them falling apart around your ears..?  As Robert Burns once wrote “The best-laid schemes o’ mice an’ men, Gang aft agley”.

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Seven Peaks – Seven Islands


The Seven peaks – Seven Islands challenge encompasses freezing Polar ice to burning tropical savannah, ski touring to scrambling, volcanoes to glaciers and everything in-between.  It may not have the altitude of the Seven Continents climbs, but brings huge challenges and rewards for those will to take up the baton.

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Turn your ideas into reality..!

One of my top five tips for life, business and education…

I’ve spoken to literally thousands of people in my career and hopefully I’ve inspired many of them.  I’ve heard fantastic ideas come from people after my keynotes, but the question is – Will you turn your ideas into reality..?  Its all well having ideas on paper, but do something about them..!

Here’s my thoughts…

Love life like a child, just don’t behave like one…


Many people know me because of my mountaineering expeditions, but in parallel to my adventures, I’ve had a long career in Electrical Engineering.  Over my 27 years of nationalisation’s, takeovers and mergers I’ve seen may things, but one of the most startling is the ability to act like a child.  Let me explain…

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A South African Saga part II – Standing together…


After our drenching in the Drakensburgs, Sibu and I set off NW towards a place that has gone down in British colonial history – Rorke’s Drift.

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Toeless on Telemarks – The First Frostbite Report


Once again, it was time to join the ATSA in the small Austrian resort of Rauris for a few days Telemark Skiing.  This was my 4th year with the team and it has almost become a tradition in my calendar.

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Reviewing 2012…


Where do I start?  So much has happened during the past year, and I don’t want to miss anything.  Good job I’m an avid diary writer…

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