2016 – A Year For Time, Travel and Tingling Fingers…

I’m not a man to sit about, so during 2016 I travelled to South Africa, Greenland, Iceland, Italy, Denmark, Germany, Greece and Spain.  I took part in the ICEMAN Polar Race, walked the Otter Trail, spoke on two cruises and held down a full-time job.  Phew..!  I’m sure I slept at some point…

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2015 – A Year for Europe…

Lyngen-2015

The finale of 2014 was, for me a difficult  time.  I was exhausted, both physically and mentally to a level where I felt truly lost.  I had recently been reported missing in the avalanches of Annapurna, but as with  most major disasters, I coped well enough.  It was the pace of my day-to-day life which had ground me down.  2015 had to be better… Continue reading “2015 – A Year for Europe…”

Leo Houlding, Mountain Heritage and Facial Hair…

MHT-Crowd

The first time I heard Leo Houlding speak was on a dark, rainy night at the Buxton Opera House.  He had quite literary just returned from free climbing The Prophet in Yosemite and the excitement showed.  He danced on the stage like a marionette, (reminding me of my childhood TV favourite Thunderbirds) which made for a strangely unnerving evening.  Though we should bring emotion into our speaking, there is a time, a place and then a need for some control. Continue reading “Leo Houlding, Mountain Heritage and Facial Hair…”

Camping Wild on the Cumbria Way…

Cumbria-Way

After a week of scorching July sunshine, I hoped for something a little cooler to wild camp the Cumbria Way.  Working with facial skin grafts in the blazing sun is always a challenge…

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Volunteering

Heage-Windmill

Giving some of your time for free is a wonderfully rewarding experience. The world doesn’t have to be all money driven, and I regularly find that people are more committed to a cause when they work for the love of it. Many charities run on volunteers because of their dedication and generosity. If only all things in life could be worked purely for passion… Continue reading “Volunteering”

KMF 2014 – A Post Avalanche Special…

KMF-2014

I’d only been home from my latest Himalayan expedition a few days, before another adventure began.  The Kendal Mountain Festival might only last a few days in the eyes of the public, but to the organisers, planning a trip to the moon would be easier.  The tsunami of e-mails that my inbox sank under took some sorting, but by the Thursday morning of the festival, I was ready to go.

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Where Conflict and Cold Collide…

Compass

100 Years ago the ‘War to end all Wars‘ began. Across Europe (and later the world), nations faced each other in what became the bloodiest conflict known at the time.  Millions of men, some regular soldiers, but many fresh troops, defined the phrase ‘Trench Warfare‘. For centuries, the cavalry charge had been the dashing face of warfare, but suddenly heavy artillery and deep mud ground the advances to a halt.  Many simply drowned in the mud, rather than by falling to the enemy.

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Back from the Edge…

Ravens-Pit

The Kendal Mountain Festival has been a stalwart of the adventure calendar for many years. It takes place late in November, when dark and cloudy skies usually cover Britain. So it was quite a change to see ’KMF On The Edge’ launched for the middle of summer. The event took place in the beautiful surroundings of Langdale in the Lake District under (mainly) sunlit skies…

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The Kendal Mountain Festival – backflips, books, slacklines and grand prizes…

Well it was that time of year again.  Time to head to Kendal for the Mountain Festival and volunteer as a presenter.  Volunteer you say???  Well, I may be a professional speaker, but there are times when the outdoor community comes together and works together.  We all give our time for free for the good of the community, and work harder than any professionally paid staff.  Working in engineering, I hear a great deal that ‘Money is the greatest motivator’.  If only these people knew how wrong they were.  Passion drives people, love drives people, people drive people.  And it’s the people I meet at the festival who drive me…

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