Mark made history when he and his three teammates became the first people to kayak the entire Northwest Passage. The expedition took 102 days from July 1 to October 12, 2023, and caught the imagination of the British public.
Teams have been attempting to complete the Northwest Passage under human power, without sails and motors, since 2013. Indeed, two other rowing teams were attempting the world first at the same time as Mark. It was a race in mould of classic Polar adventures.
Mark faced daunting sea ice, terrifying encounters with polar bears, incredible scenery and beautiful experiences with Narwhals and other whales. The team - Expedition leader West Hansen, Jeff Wueste, Eileen Visser and Mark - forged bonds for life through their shared effort and experiences.
They paddled ultra marathon distances, often for several days in a row. They were in a desperate race against time, as winter returned. In the final week, the temperatures plummeted. Mark had to dig the tent out of snow drifts and walk for hours to find fresh water that wasn't frozen solid.
Mark raised thousands of pounds for Wilderness Foundation UK.
Through his talks and workshops, Mark shares his lessons for success. He talks openly about his failures leading up to the Northwest Passage, his struggles with mental health and his framework for approaching challenges.
The Northwest Passage is the historic route, long sought by explorers, searching for a trade route from Europe to Asia.
Mark delivers talks and workshops to schools and companies. If you would like a talk on his return, get in touch.