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It sounds more about being one with nature than overcoming nature?

There was nothing to combat on the island – no hostile indigenous tribes or venomous snakes. I wanted to use everything around me, live in balance, and create a sustainable life.

After eating raw snails and living in a cave, I knew I could do that but I wanted to evolve, make a house, fire and hunt – to show it’s possible to do that from ground zero.

What did you learn?

I was ill twice and that exacerbated the isolation lows which allowed me to go in to dark patches and question what I was doing.

“You have a life back in London, why are you here? What do you have to prove?” But I came out thinking, “I have an amazing life.” 

What has been your driving force?

I’ve always felt we live quite an artificial life, living in cities with millions of people going on the Tube not interacting with each other.

I’ve been leading expeditions since 2002 and when you give people a roof over their head and a hammock to sleep in it’s amazing the amount of smiles that come from that.

There is a purer enjoyment there, rather than putting chemicals in your body or getting drunk. But it is not just thrill seeking, it is clean living. 

Sir Ranulph Fiennes said your Amazon trek was one of “the most impressive expeditions, past and present”.

Yeah. I am still glowing about it two years later. He has always been a hero of mine.

He came to speak about team leadership at [military base] Sandhurst and when I came back he made me the youngest trustee at his Transglobe Expedition Trust, which looks at young people’s expeditions that are worthy of giving grants to. 

So what comes next?

Spend some time with the family!

Naked And Marooned With Ed Stafford airs from March 14, 9pm, on Discovery Channel 


Chatroom - Ed Stafford: The adventurer on his 60-day stint naked and alone on a Fijian island
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