Qualifications

  • International Mountain Leader
  • Summer Mountain Leader
  • Rock Climbing Instructor
  • DofE Assessor
  • First Aid Instructor
  • Mental Health Instructor
  • Field Trainer for Ambulance Service

How did your career in the Outdoors start?

I've been a climber since my teens - competing, travelling to climb, simply hanging out at the crag. Gradually the journey became a bigger and more important part of trips. Eventually we moved to Cumbria to start our own business - but mainly so we could climb and paint (my wife is an artist). Then a decade ago the appeal of the outdoors proved too much and we sold the business and I became a freelance instructor. A decade later I'm the current President of the British Association of International Mountain Leaders and I spend roughly 3-4 months a year travelling as work. I feel blessed most days.


What's been your most memorable outdoor experience?

So many! - My first climbing trip to Buoux, snowshoeing the Continental Divide in the Rockies, just surviving my 4th ascent of Mont Blanc....But to date probably flying out to the Virgin Islands in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma to train Red Cross Disaster Relief Teams. The scale of the destruction, seeing the power of nature's fury but also leaving life saving skills behind for people so far from help - certainly the most challenging thing I've used my qualifications for to date.


What's your one piece of can't do without kit?

Well I'm going to be controversial - but it's my mobile (or on occasion satellite) phone.

I'm old enough to remember having to try and find a red phone box, carrying a photo of my wife in my wallet. Now - to be able to stay in touch from nearly anywhere on the planet, to take and share photos - well it's incredible. And on more remote trips I've found pictures of loved ones - and puppies - are great icebreakers!

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