Bear Grylls is not only known for his extreme survival guides, but also for his world record breaking feats. He is also the highest ranking scout leader as acting `Chief Scout `.
Born in 1974 as Edward Michael Grylls, most people would recognise him better by his professional name – Bear Grylls. The name came about when his older sister Lara gave him the nickname when he was one week old and it has stuck ever since.
Whether you know him as an adventurer, motivational speaker, television presenter and producer or author, it would be hard to argue the fact that he is a thrill-seeking individual with a long list of accolades.
As a child, Cub Scouts was the perfect place for Bear Grylls who was already a keen climber and sailor, encouraged by his father – a former Royal Marines Commando and politician.
After enrolling at Eton College, Grylls developed the school’s mountaineering and martial arts clubs as well as his own skills. By 18, he could rock-climb, skydive and had a black belt in Karate – setting him up well for a gruelling selection to serve in the SAS.
However, just a few years later, a freak freefall parachuting accident in Africa left him with a broken spine and Grylls was told he may never walk again. Driven by his passion for the great outdoors and adventure, it was less than a year later that he powered out of rehab and climbed the Himalayan peak of Ama Dablam – once described by Edmund Hillary as unclimbable.
Continuing to break records in the region, he was awarded the Guinness World Record in 1998 as the youngest British person to successfully scale Mount Everest at the age of just 23.
This gave him the perfect platform to step onto the public stage. Though his first ever break was thanks to his journey to the summit of Everest, he has since gone on to produce and present his own dedicated shows.
These include Man vs Wild, Worst Case Scenario, Wild Weekend, Escape from Hell, Get out Alive, and perhaps most famously, The Island – his first televised experiment observing island castaways and the psychology of survival.
No doubt the pinnacle of his TV career came in 2015 when The White House asked Grylls to take President Barack Obama into the Alaskan Wilderness to look at the effects of Global warming and climate change.
Bear Grylls’ list of achievements is long enough to fill a book and some of them are so far-fetched that most would struggle to even dream them up. His recently opened Survival Academy gives young people the chance to get muddy and hands on with bush craft and the great outdoors but he notes that the proudest achievements on his list have been with friends or other celebrities in aid of specific charities.
Bear has navigated an ice-breaking RIB through the Northwest Passage in the Arctic Ocean in aid of Global Angels, guided a team circumnavigating the British Isles on jet skis for the Royal National Lifeboat Institution, and even rowed naked in a bathtub along the Thames to fundraise for a friend who lost his legs in a climbing accident.
He holds a world record for the highest open-air formal dinner party whilst suspended under a hot-air balloon at 25,000 feet and was part of a paramotoring expedition across Antarctica.
It is therefore unsurprising that Grylls has been awarded an honorary commission with the Royal Navy, the honorary rank of Lieutenant Colonel in the Royal Marine Commandos, and the World Organization of the Scout Movement (WOSM) announced him as its first ever Chief Ambassador to World Scouting.
Charlotte walks anywhere and everywhere she can. Although she hasn’t ticked off as many official routes as she’d like, she has walked her way around large parts of Latin America, Southeast Asia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands.
Bucket list routes:
Last update on 2021-01-28 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API