Dan has over twenty years of experience working in the outdoor and adventure industry, a background that began as a child with mountaineering parents. His grounding came in the late 90’s through Outward Bound in the Scottish Highlands. Since then he has worked on a variety of courses from hard skills training and assessment courses, outdoor education programmes and numerous overseas expeditions. This includes delivering hard skills courses for the national centre, Glenmore Lodge, as an associate instructor.
In recent years, his love of Africa has been a huge factor in basing himself in Kenya, East Africa, working on a variety of projects with Rift Valley Adventures and always up for discovering and sharing!
How did you end up in Kenya with Rift Valley Adventures?
I got a call from the Director while skiing in the Alps and in my rush to answer the phone, my phone slipped out of my icy gloved hand and slid off and into a crevasse. I then had to rush back down to the valley to make a call from the public phone at the railway station and before I knew it, I was on a flight to Kenya!
Whats your favourite things about the work you do?
For me its being able to share wild places with people and to deliver experiences and skills which I have picked up along the way. I also love developing activities and exploring new places which Kenya has a lifetime of new and exciting places to visit and explore. But certainly sitting round the fire in the bush after a long day of adventure with a group is one of the great highlights of what I do.
Have you got a favourite adventure moment?
Definitely a stand out moment with RVA was going on a recce to Ololokwe very early on when I began working in Kenya. It had a very wild feeling and finding ourselves alone on the top really felt like we were on a journey of discovery which is becoming harder and harder in this day and age.
Whats your favourite meal at camp?
Any meal on the mountain or out in the bush. There is something special about eating in the wild at the end of a long day of activity. The food is great but all sitting down having shared a day of adventure together makes the meal seem more meaningful. Any meal that the RVA kitchen puts out though is a good one and you also know its made on the day with fresh produce.
What do you think makes the camps so special?
I think the main thing that makes the Camps special is that they have been built by the team and so you can see a bit of everyone in the camp from the vegetable patch and tree nursery to the knot board and bike skills course or delicious meals. Its a combination of many peoples efforts to create it. The locations are amazing with all the adventure on the doorstep at Forest Camp and the perfect African safari style in Ol Pejeta they are very unique camps.
If you could do any adventure what would it be?
I think there are too many to mention and especially in Kenya where I think the surface has only been scratched in terms of things to do. The highest on my wishlist would be a mountain and HUGE rock dome called ‘Poi’ in the Ndoto mountain’s. Ndoto is the Swahili word for dream so which mountaineer wouldn’t be enticed by a visit to the dream mountains.
How are you keeping busy during this lockdown?
Its certainly been a testing time for the industry and also for many people who are used to travel and adventure. I have been keeping busy on the bike trying to put some miles in and at least keep fit. Beyond that its been a good chance to finally sort out images and relive some old adventures and most importantly plan the next one!