Dougal's Epic Adventures
Dougal's Epic Adventure round Great Britain
Update 12 July 2023
Dougal has become the fastest person to kayak around Great Britain. 3000km in 40 days. The previous record was 67, created by Joe Leach in 2012.
Dougal set off from Aldeburgh on 2 June 2023, with the aim of seeing just how fast he could paddle round Great Britain. On 11 July 23 he stopped, having paddled through the night to make it in 40 days.
"A good rest is in order. It was a great adventure. I had great support along the way. The kayaking community really helped out giving me the occasional shower and bed which really helped me to break that record." Dougal, on Radio 4 PM, 12/7/23
Averaging 9-10 hrs per day for 40 days in itself is amazing. Changing perceptions on ocean going and adventure craft is going to be massive in terms of peoples' choices in the future. But probably the most impressive is the way the canoeing family rallied round, helped where they could and played their part in this outstanding feat of tenacity, skill, and perseverance.
The Dougal has Landed!!! He deserves his place among the best of the best."
From Lucy at Kirton Kayaks Ltd, 12/7/23:
"When someone describes an achievement like Dougal’s your immediate response is ’that’s unbelievable’ but if you know Dougal, you quickly realise that suddenly anything he puts his mind to is possible. We are hugely proud of him not just for his paddle of a lifetime, but his commitment to proving Diabetes does not have to be a limitation. We're chuffed to have been part of this really special adventure and to have built Dougal the boat that could take him wherever he wanted to go."
To find out more about Dougal's V8 click here
Dougal's Epic Adventure in Europe
On 23 August 2021 Dougal set off from the west coast of the Calais peninsula, with no direction, no dates, no constraints, and no support.
By October 21 he had kayaked over 2500km,to Genoa, Italy. He flew home but returned in June 22 for his own Italian job. By 9 December 2022 he landed in Venice.
Of my 22 years on earth, 17 have been spent in formal education, the last 3 at the University of Nottingham where I studied biology. My future now lies before me like a blank canvas, and I’m trying to figure out how best to fill it. My heart longs for a life of adventure, and right now I’m letting it win over.
I was always the feral kid at school and most of my childhood was spent outdoors in a rural corner of Somerset; foraging in the woods, building shelters and exploring the surrounding country, documenting my discoveries in a notepad labelled ‘adventures’. I remember telling Mum that when I was older I wouldn’t work, I’d just live in the woods, and part of me still wants to.
Aged 15 fate had it that I cross paths with Jim and Annabel Taylor-Ross. Their infectious enthusiasm and extraordinary energy made me fall in love with kayaking, and I started spending more time on the water than in the woods. I embraced my competitiveness and have spent the last 5 years racing on rivers and oceans around Europe, having many adventures with friends along the way. I love the physical sensations of being super fit, be it running, cycling or paddling, and the beautiful environments these activities take me to.
After school, I spent a year travelling around Indonesia, Malaysia and New Zealand. My childhood holidays were always on the Isle of Mull, but I already knew I loved travelling before I even travelled anywhere. Travelling under my own steam combines my passion for adventure, sport and the simple life of survival.
In September 2019 I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. I became interested in the science behind this disease and studied it at university. My philosophy brings out the positive in anything, and while diabetes may have changed me, it hasn’t changed what I can do in life.
The first of two Junior Devizes to Westminster wins, this in 2015 presented by Steve Backshall.
Launching in Calais on his European Epic Adventure. "See you in two weeks".
To find out more about this truly authentic adventure read Dougal's extremely engaging Blogs.
Dougal has thoroughly tested the V8 Tourer. More used to racing V12s, the V8 has proven itself as the ideal versatile touring surfski: surfing in down winds despite the loaded hatches, coping with squalls and gnarly coves, efficient on the flat inland canals, eating up the kilometers and raising eyebrows and impressing even the most hardened European paddlers.