Our test team and staff are the finest. Many World, Olympic and National Champions in all disciplines choose to use our products. We are also proud to be official partners with Plas Y Brenin Mountain Training Centre and Glenmore Lodge Mountain Centre.
Home: GOC (also known as Yorkshire)
Living now: Cairngorms
Discipline(s): White Water, Sea Kayak, Open Canoe, occasional crimes against Freestyle, SUP and Marathon.
I really got into paddling at uni (after deciding that white water was more interesting than Physics; an opinion I still hold). With the benefit of hindsight our skills were awful, our decision making was really shonky… but we had some great times, a load of epics and a great crash and burn introduction to paddling.
Coming up on 20 years ago I decided that I’d had enough of being an proper adult, and quit my job as a weather forecaster to work as a trainee at an outdoor centre in North Wales. Even on the coldest, windiest Scottish paddling day, that still feels like it was a great decision.
My hobby is going boating, learning new stuff and experiencing new moves. It doesn’t really matter what craft, but on my perfect day, the plan is optimistic and the conditions are marginal. We spend some time at the edge of in and out of control, and finish the day warm and dry, sharing ever more exaggerated stories. I love expeditions and the kind of people they attract. Favourite sea trips include not-quite-circumnavigations of Orkney, Shetland, the Hebrides, Lofoten and the Faroes. Favourite river trips include the Thule Beri, Humla Karnali for feeling out there, and the Colorado for the surroundings.
For my work I try to help recreational paddlers find more fun in their paddling. Sometimes that involves trying to help them paddle better or harder, sometimes it’s getting them to appreciate what they’ve already got, other times it’s parking the metaphysical navel-gazing and just getting out boating. I also spent a few years pretending to be an academic, trying to understand what coaching paddling is all about (or at least finding some convenient stories that I can believe in).
Favourite food: Cheese – ideally matured in a dry bag for a couple of weeks.
Favourite drink: The first Everest Beer at the end of a trip
Favourite music: Whatever matches the mood. That’s hardly ever overamplified bhangra played through tinny bus speakers.
Ultimate paddling destination: Nepal
Motto: Don’t take it too seriously…except when it gets serious.
Advice to newcomers: Find the thing that makes you smile.
Favourite Peak UK kit:
Ocean Bothy (on the sea and when coaching), Semi ST short for freestyle and WW on sunny days, Explorer Salopettes for Sea Kayaking and Open Boating with a dry crotch