Inspiring People

The Happiness Trick:

I am indebted for this to Randi Skaug the first Norwegian woman to climb Everest. First thing in the morning, clasp one hand over the other then raise your hands above your head – and smile. It is just about automatic. Hold for a few seconds to a minute – at least until you have …

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Life in the Wild

‘When Miriam Lancewood and her partner Peter set off to live alone deep in the New Zealand wilderness, they told their families they’d be back in a year. But the couple came to enjoy their nomadic, off-grid lifestyle — foraging for edible plants and killing their own animals — so much that they’re still living …

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Alex Honnold Free Solo Climbing Capitan

Just about impossible to watch – but then I’m not good with heights, or watching people die…The good news is he doesn’t. See video here: or here:  

Riding on the Sheeps’s Back

Or vice versa. Patagonia’s Woolyester Fleece (US$139 – Oct 2018) might  be a great mid-layer addition to your other wool clothing, your Kathmandu/Columbia thermal for example, and your Kathmandu or Columbia wool shirt. I rarely get cold enough (even in winter) when I am walking to need such a layer. I have probably put one …

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A Sand County Almanac

“We reached the old wolf in time to watch a fierce green fire dying in her eyes. I realized then, and have known ever since, that there was something new to me in those eyes—something known only to her and to the mountain. I was young then, and full of trigger-itch; I thought that because …

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NZ’s South Coast Track: Westies Hut to Cromarty:

After you have completed the wonderful journey on the South Coast Track from the Rarakau Car Park to the magical Westies Hut it is possible to continue the journey all the way to Puysegur Point Lighthouse, the Te Oneroa shelter and the ruins of the old mining town of Cromarty way out at Preservation Inlet …

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Amazing Lives: Jim Corbett and the Man-Eaters

For those of you who came in late Jim Corbett’s life and stories will still be an eye opener. During his ‘holidays’ he used to stalk and kill man-eaters. Some of them had killed and eaten thousands of people! Really! So this was tremendously dangerous ‘work’. As a youngster these ‘ultimate’ hunting stories completely thrilled …

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How to Travel Around the World With Just a 20lb Backpack:

People carry too much gear. We are planning a trip to Scotland this year so we are working on how to fit everything we need into a couple of sub 500 gram backpacks such as these . For about a month away we will want to be carrying sub 20 lb  (<10 kg) on our backs …

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Thrilling Tales: 37 Days of Peril

You can survive: Truly alone in the wilderness: Lost in Yellowstone for 37 days pretty much without equipment, food, clothing or shelter. ‘After wandering away from the rest of the expedition on September 9, 1870, Everts managed to lose the pack horse which was carrying most of his supplies. He ate a songbird and minnows …

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The Twelve Woodlores: Ray Mears.

Some sound advice from the introduction of Ray’s excellent ‘The Survival Manual’. If you have not caught up yet with Ray, you should. He is the original of those poor copies such as Bear Grylls having trained the SAS and others for many years in survival skills. You can get a taste of his style …

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Thrilling tales: Erin McKittrick:

This young lady (accompanied by her husband, Hig) is amongst the greatest living explorers. Their 4,000 mile trek along the US Pacific Coast related in her book ‘A Long Trek Home’ is astonishing – but it proved to be only the beginning of her adventures. Connect with her here: http://www.groundtruthtrekking.org/blog/

Lost at Fromelles:

Just like thousands of other Australians I lost a relative at Fromelles a hundred years ago today. Private Joseph Leslie (Roy) Martin Number 1584, 30th battalion AIF, an ex cadet, single labourer from Grenfell NSW, an uncle who would never be – disappeared that day aged just 20 – and has never been found since. …

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Archaeology is exciting.

There is so much more to learn. Its secrets should never be locked away from us (eg by spurious claims of respect for remote ‘ancestors’). I have enormous respect for these ancient ‘Spaniards’ who were the first people into America more than 20,000 years ago – not to mention their wonderful cave art eg Cave …

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Thrilling Tales: The DIY Motorcycle:

Emile Leray built a working motorbike from a broken down car to escape the African desert: ‘A Frenchman has found fame over 20 years later after pulling off a remarkable escape from the Moroccan desert – by building a motorbike just using parts from his crashed car. His amazing escape from the barren terrain saw Mr …

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Go Land Rover:

‘In 2013, three friends set off on a journey that they had been told was impossible: the north-south crossing of the Congo River Basin, from Kinshasa, in the Democratic Republic of Congo, to Juba, in South Sudan. Traversing two and a half thousand miles of the toughest terrain on the planet in a twenty-five year …

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This Book May Save Your Life:

At very least it will make it enormously better. Enough that you can look forward to enjoying hiking in your 70s, 80s and 90s (coming up sooner than you think!) It will totally CURE Type 2 Diabetes in 8 weeks! Get a copy now: ‘The 8-week Blood Sugar Diet’ Michael Mosley: http://www.amazon.com/8-Week-Blood-Sugar-Diet-Reprogramme/dp/1780722400 US$7.13 or : …

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Thrilling Tales: Daniel Boone:

If Boone could do it, I can: ‘According to one story, in 1810 (at age 79) or later, Boone went with a group on a long hunt as far west as the Yellowstone River, a remarkable journey (from Missouri to Montana) at his age, if true. In 1816, a United States officer at Fort Osage, …

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Hannibal Lektor’s hand:

So far (I think) it has not crept out at night to do mayhem on the innocent – but it’s sure looking impressive. I am now an amalgam of machine parts: you might like to tell anyone you know whose fingers are crippled with arthritis: there is a better way. Don’t wait too long. The …

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Thrilling Tales: ‘The Road to Endor’

By E.H Jones is simply the most amazing true escape story, ever. I have been recommending it to people for fifty years but it has largely been out of print. I have not owned a copy myself for most of that time – the dangers of lending books to ‘friends’! Now once more I can: …

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Thrilling Tales: Lewis & Clark

A Film by Ken Burns 1997. About the first crossing of the American continent (by Europeans) in 1804-6. We have spent the last two nights simply mesmerised by this amazing documentary. Ken Burns is always such a treat! (You probably remember his grand documentary about The Civil War). The scenery and photography were superb. It …

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