1. Was this your first long distance (ie multi-week) skate trip? What inspired you to choose the location?
Yes it was actually, my friend Troy who also came on this trip had previously done a crazy trip from the top of Thailand to Singapore and I saw the great experiences he had, meeting amazing people, dodging elephants, past snakes and I thought that would be an amazing adventure to do. That really inspired me to get involved and I had heard many great things about Chile and Peru thought it would be a great place to explore.
2. Part of the aim of the trip was to promote sustainable travel - do you think you got that message across in Peru and Chile and what can everyone do to make their trip a bit more sustainable?
Yes well somewhat, sustainability is probably not as front of mind for people in South America as it is from where I come from. In saying that we received positive support for our goals and what the trip was about. In terms of what people can do, try to incorporate activities that don't require using vehciles or burning of fossil fuels. Obviously though flights and other transport are hard to avoid, so perhaps look at ways to offset the emissions from your flights through verified carbon credits.
3. What kind of sponsorship did you need to get your trip off the ground and how did you go about getting it?
We received a bit of sponsorship for equipment which helped us a lot, and the equipment was great and held up well considering it got battered around so much! We basically have a website and facebook following and approached a couple of cool companies to see if they would support our cause.
4. The three of you are originally from Christchurch - do any of you still live there and was there any effects from the earthquake there on your trip?
Yes, we have actually all moved up to Auckland since the earthquakes. But all experienced the earthquakes in Christchurch. We didn’t see any noticeable effects Chile, but in saying that we didn’t have an appreciation of what places may have looked like before the Earthquake happened so I couldn’t really say.
5. Where is the next skateventure? Is there anywhere you would not consider skating?
That’s the next question right?! Well to be honest I haven’t looked into it yet. Guy reckons something crazy like Antarctica could be the go, but we would have to create some sort of ridiculous board or wheels to do that. Do you have any suggestions?
6. How did you get involved in longboarding in the first place? What is the scene in NZ like and are the three of you involved in any other sports?
When I was at university I learnt to longboard, as it was a great way to get around the place. I had many other friends who did the same and I guess it just became a fun hobbieof mine. In NZ longboarding seems to be growing rapidly, with groups starting to form and even some downhill competitions are starting I believe. So it’s great to see.
7. Tell us some more about the carboNZero programme and your role in that
Well we help companies in around the world to measure, reduce and offset their greenhouse gas emissions (carbon footprint) with credibility. My role is to help businesses communicate the great initiatives they are implementing to reduce their impact on the environment and also to help raise awareness of what we do at carboNZero. So a cool job, with a company doing great things!
8. Would you consider another skate trip in Chile?
Yes for sure, the people were great, the roads were really good and the scenery was amazing. Chile was a great place for what we were doing.
9. You had your fair share of misadventures along the way, but what were some things you encountered that you could never have planned for?
Well one of the boys got attacked and bitten by a large pack off wild dogs near Tocopilla, we had to not go off the side of the road for 15kms when we crossed the Peru/Chile boarder because off rogue landmines...But really the one thing we didn't really plan for was the crazy reponses we had from people passing us by or people we met in villages. Some people treated us like aliens, others high fived us and others just tooted their horns angrily and wondered why three crazy guys were in their town on Skateboards! We also had to survive on biscuits for a few days, as in a few planned out villages we arrived at bad times and food access wasn't good etc so that was hard, and we actually ran out of sunblock one day and ended up having to rub dirt on our arms etc to stop getting burnt haha. A few desperate times you might say...
10. What has the media coverage of your journey been like so far?
There has been some good coverage here in NZ and Australia, I guess because it is a rather unusual story! But the support has been great, and we are stoked to be able to make a few people smile!
If you want to add anything more, that would be great.
Great, I guess that overall it was a hard trip, we had some hill climbs that lasted over 25kms but the people, the scenery and adventure that we had made it all worthwhile
Also if you could put a link to our facebook page that would be great, we'll be getting more photos, videos up soon for people to see if they are interested.