I am 39 years old and live near Warsash, Hampshire with my wife and two young children aged 3 and 6. I have been fishing from a kayak for about 5 years now and only over the last few years became more interested in the paddling. Having completed a few 30 mile trips in both sit-on and sit-in sea kayaks and being of an adventurous nature I feel this challenge would be the next step. I like to push the boundaries which I feel this will do whilst trying to support two very worthwhile charities.
I am 44 years old and married with 3 young children – I started late !!I have lived around Poole all my life. I’m Ex Forces – spent nearly a decade in and currently work as a Commercial Manager for heating company. My hobbies include paddling, fishing, hill walking and keeping fit.
I am a 58 year old sea dog. I live in Bournemouth with my partner and have two grown up sons.
I started out as a Boat Builder, but during the ‘80s recession, my life-long hobby of Martial Arts took over as my main vocation and continues to this day. I am now also owner/partner in ‘Surfski kayak’ as a dealer for Epic Kayaks including training people to help them get the best out of paddle sports. Plus, I am about to go into production of my own open cockpit Sea Kayak designs!
I have been fortunate that my career has allowed me more time than most to follow my passion for the sea. I have always enjoyed sea kayaking and diving. Many years ago, I combined my knowledge and experience of kayaking, diving and boat building to design my own unique kayak that would allow me to explore and dive in remote locations in a fast open cockpit sea kayak. This first boat is the prototype for my current design.
I have been Sea kayaking for 38 years. I am mostly self-taught as there was not the accessibility to courses when I began. Despite my years of experience; I decided to officially train to BCU 4 star level. I have paddled solo on numerous long trips and circumnavigations in the UK and abroad. Examples are solo crossings to the Scilly Isles and Lundy, Western Isles of Scotland, Hawaii, Vancouver Island, Brittany etc. I have always preferred to explore the coast in a more intimate way. Despite enjoying performance paddling, I find it hard to just blast from A to B as I am drawn by the “Sirens” to explore every cove and cave!
I have lost a few close people to cancer including my father. I see this as a great opportunity to use my skills to help others in a very real way through two noble charities.
Mike is a Hospital Consultant in Southampton who has had a longstanding interest in exploration and physical challenges. His previous ventures to raise money for charity have included the first unsupported crossing of Antarctica on foot which he undertook with Sir Ranulph Fiennes, and he and Sir Ranulph also ran seven marathons, on seven continents in seven days. Mike has also appeared frequently on television, most notably as the doctor and endurance expert in all three series of the BBC’s ‘SAS – Are You Tough Enough?’ set in Scotland, the jungles of Borneo and the Deserts of Namibia, and as the presenter of the BBC series – ‘The Challenge’. However, he has only very recently taken to the sea.
Whilst down in Antarctica in early 2013, setting up the first ever attempt to cross the South Pole in winter, Mike met a sea kayaker from Scotland. This led to a 3 day kayaking trip off the Isle of Skye, which convinced him that this was a sport he had to take up. Since then, he has paddled off the south coast as often as he could but he still views himself as very much a keen beginner. Joining the trip to Alderney is therefore a very big challenge.
Mike has published two books ‘Shadows on the Wasteland’ on the crossing of Antarctica and ‘Survival of the Fittest’ covering all his extensive outdoor adventures set in the context of improving understanding of nutrition, health and optimal human performance.