The 2016 Adventure Travel World Summit, held in Anchorage, Alaska, is a gathering of the worlds most elite companies, entrepreneurs, travel writers and publications in Adventure Tourism. The focus is on adventure, media connections and education with panel discussions, keynote speakers and peer sessions gearing business owners towards success and sustainability in adventure tourism. A select group of South African products were chosen to represent SA’s adventure tourism portfolio, Marthinus and Untouched Adventures proudly being one of them.
For this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, all the local Alaskan Adventure Tourism operators offered expeditions for the world to experience Alaska, and how they “do” adventure tourism. Marthinus, like a school boy at Christmas, excitedly selected the most extreme expedition he could find. A 5 night fly-in/fly-out wilderness excursion with glaciers, hiking, camping, trout fishing and of course good old grizzly bear watching. He surprisingly caught trout on his lucky R300 ‘throwaway’ fishing rod, ate like a king, and had a few close encounters with some Grizzly Mamma’s and her cubs (which we won’t elaborate on!). And if that wasn’t enough, after the conference Marthinus managed to negotiate an extra night camping solo in the wild, just Marthinus, his camping gear, a pack raft, and unbeknownst to him a stampeeding Moose and a hungry Wolverine. Lucky for his family, he returned safely to make his flight the following night even if no-one would pick up a smelly hitchhiker on the highway. After a 30km walk back to town and a sneaky McDonalds interlude he spent the next 30 hours in layovers and flights before he could enjoy a hot shower and a warm bed. The adventurer in him was not even phased. Shame for the poor stranger seated next to him though.
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