“A lot of my earliest memories are of the mountains, usually perched on my Dad’s back. That was his church, he believed there was something powerful about the mountains. He passed away 15 years ago, I was 17 at the time. It felt like a storm ripping through my life, tearing away all familiarity leaving me lost and afraid. He had a heart attack in his sleep, I tried to give him CPR but it was too late. For years I felt so much guilt, that I hadn’t done enough to save him but I know now there was nothing I could have done. What wore heavy on me was the fact that he was healthy, just 56 years of age. My Dad was a true adventurer in my eyes and I want to live my life by him, to carry his torch forward. We may have only had 17 years together but during that time he instilled in me a sense of adventure and I wear that like a badge of honour. I’ve been fortunate to have gone on some amazing adventures over the years. It’s taken me all over the world, from Siberia to Patagonia and back again. On the day of my Dad’s funeral my uncle handed me an old 35mm slide, it was a photograph of Dad sitting on his motorcycle taken before he departed on an adventure up the west coast of Ireland. That was the seed planted; I would recreate this trip one day. In July 2020 the lockdown restrictions eased in Ireland so my good friend Jay and I took off on our motorcycles. We travelled 2,231km together around the entire coast of Ireland on our bikes, wild camping along the way. One evening we were driving the coast road towards the Burren in Clare where we had planned to set up our tents for the night. The sun was setting over the sea and as I looked up at the sunset I got hit with an overwhelming sense of my Dad’s presence, as though he was right there with me. I was following in his wake and for that moment we were together again. It means so much to me that I can walk in his footsteps. I’m so grateful to him for passing down his sense of adventure to me, that is his legacy and now it is mine too.”

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