My sea legs have finally gone - I now look like I have had five pints and I can just about walk past a cake without having to eat it all. That is what trying to row across the Atlantic Ocean does to you!
On January 31st , 27 days and over 2000 nautical miles into the crossing, our ocean rowing boat capsized without warning and my six man team were left clinging to the upturned hull. It was a cruel end to the expedition and we were very lucky to survive.
On March 11th I am returning to The Lemon Tree. I have very fond memories of my last visit to Aberdeen a few years ago, when there was a packed house. This time there is even more adventure to talk about from my first round the World cycle, to the recent dip in the Atlantic!
Last summer was spent on expedition and filming in the Canadian Arctic. The documentary ‘Rowing the Arctic’ was recently shown on BBC1 Scotland and highlighted the fast changing world we live in. My team, lead by Scots adventurer Jock Wishart were able to row through the archipelago and sea ice of the Nunavut territory in the far north east of Canada. It’s a journey that would have been impossible until the last few years. The photos and film clips that I will show certainly paint a very different picture of the high Arctic than what I expected to find.
Since I cycled around the world five years ago to set a new World Record there has been an explosion in the number of people taking on this ultimate cycling challenge. In February this year nine riders set out from London to try and once again beat the World Record. This a fantastic British obsession, which few other countries seem interested in!
My Americas expedition was not about breaking records; it was a nine-month journey down the mountainous spine from Alaska to Tierra del Fuego, stopping off to climb the great peaks of Denali and Aconcagua en route. With far more time to stop and explore, there is still a lot of unseen photography and footage from this journey.
Returning to the Lemon Tree will be my first public event since returning from the Atlantic – maybe it will prove to be good therapy to talk through what actually happened!
I hope to see you there.