Adventurer and stand up paddler Charlie Head likes to do things his own way. Nearing the end of his current SUP feat Charlie sent SUP Mag UK this update. Over to Charlie.
‘I’m circumnavigating England and Wales to create a film documentary about the pursuit of happiness through adventure. Exploring the coast in a way that would test everything I’ve ever learnt about my passions in life. An attempt to reveal a transparent journey about our mental health, environmental connection and thriving on the sleeve of adversity.
I have no money or even a tent – surviving with just the basics. I have depended on the kindness of strangers and followers. Guided by wind and tide.
I wanted to combine some hard paddle legs with a balance of filming the doc, Facebook blogs, interviewing people and letting my life be entangled with the people I bump into!
I kept the trip quiet with the hope that an organic relationship with people and followers would evolve and let people discover it.
It set off from Burnham-on-Crouch. Essex, heading anti-clockwise up to the Scottish boarder. Known as the hardest way around the UK, which was only achieved a few years ago by kayaks.
It was a last minute decision to make this trip, leaving way too late in the season to complete it within the summer months. This journey could be achieved quicker without distractions. But with the filming I do and the interactions I have it has taken a lot longer and now I’m entering the winter months I’ll be lucky to complete before the New Year!
With just a tarp, a bivy and sleeping bag, I’m really starting to feel the cold. But that’s what it’s about. The easy route isn’t for me – it’s definitely about fight! Luckily people sometimes offer me a home or some shelter but a lot of the time I wash up on beaches, islands, under cliffs and in caves that have no humans around.
People have made this trip possible. If they can’t offer me shelter they have helped me with food or by making donations at the #hungrySUPper. I can only carry a certain amount of supplies due to weight. I have two +60L rucksack bags that can only really carry a week load of food at a time.
I try to honour people’s support by fulfilling requests and contributing to their lives if I can. I beach clean everywhere I go and immerse myself in people’s lives becoming a mobile sounding block and have let people know about some of the mental health issues that I have.
Obviously I’m raising awareness for my charity I set up last year www.thebigstand.com and environmental education, but mental health has grown to be at the forefront of this trip. It’s every bit connected to our environment and the impact of our society.
The human interest of this trip has been so incredible, so emotional it’s and shaping up to reveal a far deeper story than I imagined.
I have teamed up with www.blackwaterproductions.com capturing the impact shots around my self-shooting. We will be hosting an event next season for everyone I have connected to and/or who has supported me in some way. This is the final connection to the film and the big thank you.
I’m getting smellier and hairier every day, combing my moustache with my toothbrush, talking to animals and myself more than people and dancing to an invisible beat of destiny. Stick with me for the final leg of the journey and please feel free to follow me on social media.’