Adventurer Dwayne Fields is not any stranger to pushing his limits in excessive environments. His journey started in turbulent interior London, however Fields has soared to a few of the world’s highest peaks by sheer onerous work, grit and willpower.
In his latest journey collection titled “7 Hardest days“, set to premier on 19 March on Nationwide Geographic, Fields tackles a few of the world’s most difficult areas, together with Gabon, Oman, and Kyrgyzstan.
With simply seven days to information himself and his digital camera operator to security, he should overcome epic bodily and psychological challenges. I had the chance to talk to the inspiring adventurer about his humble beginnings and the challenges forward.
In South Africa, we imagine that kids will usually tackle the meanings of their names. I don’t know if it’s any totally different rising up in Jamaica, however your title is Dwayne Fields. You appear to have been destined for the nice outdoor.
[Laughs] I used to be born in a really rural a part of Jamaica, so round my home had been woodlands and bushes. I by no means thought my title made or impacted me, however now that you just introduced it up, who is aware of? I do know my early years performed a component in what I needed to do, and I feel I used to be destined to do what I do.
You moved from Jamaica to London at a younger age. Which a part of London did you develop up in?
So I grew up in North London in a spot referred to as Hackney. Most individuals will know Hackney due to the 2012 Olympics. I do know Hackney as a result of, at one stage, it was one of the violent components of London. In areas of excessive deprivation, there was plenty of crime and avenue violence of their earlier days. It’s a world away from the place I grew up in Jamaica.
Are you able to describe the way it was totally different?
The place I used to be born in Jamaica, it was an actual neighborhood sense. The homes weren’t shut collectively. Most locations didn’t even have electrical energy, operating water or gasoline. We nonetheless used wooden fires and charcoal to cook dinner our meals. So it’s a completely totally different world, despite the fact that they’re worlds that moulded me.
Throughout his developmental years, he was wrapped up within the interior London avenue gang tradition. Nonetheless, following a taking pictures incident, he resolved to rework his life and flee into the wilderness. He launched into a collection of challenges, starting with a 400-mile trek to the magnetic North Pole. Dwayne’s accomplishment is noteworthy as he’s solely the second Black man, after Matthew Henson in 1909, to have reached the Pole. He has challenged the widespread notion of what a younger Black Londoner can obtain and is devoted to motivating others to pursue comparable paths.
Town can usually really feel isolating, significantly for individuals like us who got here from pastoral areas. Adapting to extra chaotic environments can take time. However I feel you’ve gotten a greater grasp on that than I do as a result of, from London, you went the place few people ever will. The North Pole. Why?
It made excellent sense to do one thing as summary and on the market as doable. When I discovered myself with a gun pointed at my face, I realised I had been pretending to be somebody for thus lengthy. I wanted to return to who I used to be. One of the best ways to do this was to throw myself again into the deep finish, returning to nature and the outside. In doing that, I got here throughout some individuals planning an expedition to the North Pole and wrote them a passionate letter to hitch them. This journey could be a problem of resilience and would present me what I used to be fabricated from.
How did you mentally put together your self to take this important step and enterprise into the chilly unknown?
My preparation concerned dragging plenty of tyres round Hackney. I used to be laughed at whereas doing that. I googled how one can prepare for the arctic, and also you get all these guys sitting in chilly baths and ice buckets. However I noticed this man pulling tyres on a seashore. I didn’t have a seashore, so I figured I’d pull a number of down Victoria Park in Hackney. I keep in mind strolling down the canal, and there was a bunch of eight or 9 boys. They laughed and referred to as me each title beneath the solar whereas I used to be strolling previous dragging these tyres. That was most likely my lowest second in coaching.
Regardless of all of the discouragement from his London surroundings, with individuals utilizing racial stereotypes to dampen his targets of defining his future, he went off to coach in Norway. Snowboarding, strolling, operating and climbing whereas carrying weights on his again for 7 to eight hours day by day to strengthen his legs. However what actually motivated Dwayne was understanding he longed for a greater life than he had beforehand recognized. And if he was ever going again, it was to his genuine self.
Your new present with Nationwide Geographic is named 7 hardest days. Might you inform us a bit extra about it and what to anticipate?
The present lives as much as its title. It’s me dropped into a few of the hardest environments on Earth on the hardest time of the 12 months. So within the desert, it’s on the hottest time of the 12 months, within the mountains in the course of winter. Within the rainforest, it’s exactly that. And I’ve to seek out my means out utilizing all my expertise. And this isn’t to indicate my talents however to take the viewers with me on a journey as I navigate the surroundings, study what works, and apply issues I’ve learn or skilled.
Why these three locations: Gabon, Oman and Kyrgyzstan?
Oman is likely one of the most forested international locations in all the world. Greater than 80% of it’s a jungle, like a extremely darkish jungle. Kyrgyzstan has the Tian Shan mountains and actually chilly. The individuals there nonetheless reside a nomadic way of life for probably the most half. Oman is likely one of the hottest locations on the planet. Temperatures can soar as excessive as 50 levels in the course of summer time. And people are a few of the causes we selected these locations.
With all of your success, you haven’t any cause to look again, however as a co-founder of the #WeTwo basis, you appear solely to look again to lend a serving to hand to individuals who grew up in difficult circumstances just like yours.
This basis is strictly what I might have wanted as a youngster. And together with one among my expedition teammates, I created a assist system for younger individuals who would’ve by no means thought to go on expeditions like this. It’s about permitting individuals to see and expertise journey, which I imagine will make them fall in love with nature, the outside and their work to guard it.
Wonderful, Dwayne; I hope your basis can attain the form of youngsters who laughed at you and expose them to all these new worlds. Thanks in your work and time, and wishing you extra success in your adventures
[Laughs] Thanks a lot, and do tune in when the present airs this coming March.
7 Hardest days, hosted by Dwayne Fields, premiers on 19 March and ends on 2 April, Sundays at 21:00 on Nationwide Geographic (DStv 181).
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