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Traversing Madagascar – Ash Dykes ?>

Traversing Madagascar – Ash Dykes

I went to listen to a talk at Venue Cymru – a theatre in Llandudno, North Wales. In my ignorance, all I knew of the talk was that a guy named Ash Dykes would be giving it on a walk across Madagascar. Though not having done my research, I thought I would attend on the common interest in Madagascar.


It turned out that Ash Dykes is holder of two World First Records as well as being UK Adventurer of the Year. I was fascinated by the story he told of his adventures around the world, how it all began then onto his Mongolia and Madagascar world first expeditions. Having had to put my own adventures on hold for a few months after the dreaded C-word, Ash’s talk was extremely inspirational and heightened my excitement to get back out exploring.

We have roots to remember where we came from & wings so that you can soar to different parts of the world

– Ash Dykes

e47b250c762747293981e347e7266f17Whilst I mostly agree with Ash’s quote and wholly with the intention of its meaning, my own perspective would be that we have an innate sense of belonging which reminds us of where we came from. I feel that roots somewhat insinuate remaining in one place and contradict the second half of the wording.

As a Conservation Biologist and my own interest in Madagascar being the endemic species that can be found there, I was delighted to hear that 13514368_10153558702237466_1486951384_nduring his World Records Ash got involved in local projects and was also promoting these during his talk – such as the Lemur Conservation Network and Madecasse chocolate.

Ash provided free samples of the chocolate during the interval of the talk & what better way to win someone over than providing free chocolate?! 13506985_491352484390008_4337081491287351128_nOf course, after reading up about the brand,
I was more than willing to promote Madecasse – having a photo with the bar of chocolate at the top of Mount Snowdon, the highest mountain in Wales.

We were Peace Corps volunteers in Madagascar. We fell in love with the people and the country and wanted to do more. So we started making chocolate there in 2008 in collaboration with a local manufacturer. Even though 70% of the world’s cocoa comes from Africa, less than 1% of the world’s chocolate is actually made there. We exist to change this.


13536118_10153558702242466_1086363653_nAsh Dykes is a high achiever and a fascinating thrill-seeker. I highly recommend following his adventurers and most definitely going to listen to him talk if you have the chance to.




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