Madagascar’s ‘Silk’ Route

I’ve been visiting Madagascar for over 20 years: in fact I’ve returned each year since 1991. Back then it captivated me like no place had done before, or since, and my enthusiasm has yet to diminish. Since my first visit in 1998, one place on the island has been my favourite – Marojejy National Park in the far north east. It is one of Madagascar’s wildest places.

I initially visited the park with just one aim – to get photos of the incredibly rare silky sifaka (Propithecus candidus). Continue reading

Searching for Snow Leopards

The snow leopard is the epitome of remote, rugged wilderness and has for so long been regarded as a mythical ghost of the mountains: a creature that lives unseen amongst the snow-capped peaks of the Himalayas and Central Asia. Continue reading

The Mother of all Mountains

I made the decision to climb Everest back in 2014. I’d already reached the summit of Manaslu, the world’s 8th highest mountain, in September 2013. Before that I’d said no to Everest swayed by the negative journalism, the commercialism, the ‘buy your way onto the mountain’ attitude – but, probably, most of all because I did not think I was capable. Continue reading

Páramo confirmed 2017 Official Kit Partner for British Exploring

Páramo is supporting British Exploring during their 2017 expeditionary year as official kit partner. British Exploring CEO Honor Wilson-Fletcher commented: ”British Exploring is working to raise awareness of environmental issues through our programmes, and to ensure that we leave no trace behind us when we visit wild, remote and fragile environments. It’s a particular pleasure for us to work with an organisation whose brand is about both technical excellence, always a priority, and ethical manufacturing.”

British Exploring will stage 7 expedition programmes in 2017 for young people, visiting the Amazon, Himalayas, Yukon, Spanish Badlands and Iceland – as part of their work as a Youth Development Charity.

Simon White, Chief Leader Expeditionary Year Iceland 2017 gives his perspective on the work of British Exploring and the Páramo partnership… Continue reading

“You never climb the same mountain twice”

“You never climb the same mountain twice, not even in memory. Memory rebuilds the mountain, changes the weather, retells the jokes, remakes all the moves.”

Flores’s beautiful quote always captured my imagination and it also fits well with the stance long maintained by the Directing Staff that no two Fan Dances are ever the same, especially when quizzed on the fastest winter and summer times recorded in the events history. Continue reading

Maisie’s story – told by the Flight of the Swans team

Bewick's Swans arriving in the UK

As winter closes over the Arctic tundra and the temperatures drop to well below freezing, a swan takes flight. Maisie is leaving her summer breeding ground late this year but with the cold now gently nudging her on her way she has no choice but to begin her long migration. Continue reading

Reindeer, Mountain Char & Super Noodles: ‘Gröna Bandet’ Stage 2

High summer days

 Mark Waring continues his 1,000 miles on foot across Sweden

The small village of Duved nestles amidst the mountains of Jämtland, in the summer it’s quiet as any ‘out-of-season’ ski resort. A few shops and bars lie below ski runs and lifts, with a sense of everything waiting for the return of snow. For me, it’s my first ‘town stop’. A chance for a ‘rest day’, an opportunity to eat properly, wash clothes and, importantly, to resupply for the next leg of my journey, another ten days through Sweden’s forests and mountains. Continue reading

A monkey puzzle mission

Huerquehue National Park, Chile

Although my day to day work with Trees for Life is focused on the restoration of the Caledonian Forest in the Highlands of Scotland, I have a strong interest in trees and forests elsewhere in the world as well. One of my particular favourites is the forest of araucaria (or monkey puzzle) trees in the southern Andes of Chile and Argentina, which I’ve been visiting since 1977. Continue reading