The Intrepid Explorer
Taking life by the scruff of the neck...
The other day I was asked by a dear friend how things were going on the work front, and I replied honestly that things were tough. I’ve just taken on three more massive magazine projects and there simply doesn’t seem to be enough time in the day to juggle all the different balls I now find myself holding.
His reply was a quote from a chap called Pierre Wildman, who wisely stated: “If it was easy, everyone would be doing it!” This resonated with me and I immediately felt a lot better. Of course, he was right. I shouldn’t have needed the reminder, as we also have a big sign on our wall at the office that reads: “Good things come to those who wait”, which has been crossed out, and below which has been written: “Good things come to those people who work their asses off and never give up!”
Both these quotes apply perfectly to the intrepid explorers we feature in this magazine. There’s nothing remotely easy about tackling the seven summits and ski hauling to both the North and South Poles as our cover personalities, Vaughan de la Harpe and Sean Disney, have done (see page 10).
There’s a huge amount of personal sacrifice, training, expense, commitment and heart required to complete a marathon in Antarctica, especially when you’re blind (Hein Wagner – page 62) or brave the freezing waters in the same location, swimming a mile (Ryan Stramrood – page 22).
Imagine the effort, stamina and courage it requires to drive a motorbike – lying down, without the use of your legs – from Botswana to Cape Town as Dale Collett has done (page 46) or run for 42 hours straight as Ryan Sandes has just accomplished on the Drakensberg Grand Traverse (page 88).
I’ve realised this is why I love publishing The Intrepid Explorer because when the people you meet and cover in the magazine are taking life by the scruff of the neck, it enables you to push your own limited boundaries. While I’ll never throw myself off the highest commercial bungee jump in the world – as my wife recently did at Bloukrans Bridge – I do take risks and take plunges in many other ways.
So I hope the incredible people and their amazing feats in this edition of The Intrepid Explorer also inspire you; to borrow from the words of Chris Bertish, who has become a regular contributor and who recently set three stand-up paddleboarding world records in five months (page 74): “Dream it, See it, Believe it, Achieve it!”
Until next time, live the life of adventure!