Home: The WORLD – Presently Cornwall – United Kingdom
Childhood home: South Africa
Profession: Professional sea kayak guide / coach
Height: 6’ 2”
Weight: 102 kg (224 pounds)
Philosophy of Life: Peace, Love & Happiness
Shaun started paddling informally by doing touring adventurous expeditions paddling with friends in Africa, trips in a variety of areas that included the upper Zambezi, Portuguese islands of Mozambique and the coastal waters of South Africa. In 2007 after having sold his printing business and an outdoor adventure farm in South Africa, Shaun moved with his young family to the Greek island of Kefalonia, where he worked as a commercial sea kayak guide for 6 years. He took time to explore and expedition paddle in a variety of areas and islands, including trips across the Aegean Sea from Athens to Turkey and expeditions to and around numerous Greek islands; his main aim was to enjoy his paddling, family and children while they were still young.
In November 2012 Shaun traveled to Cornwall as a student and returned again in February 2013 to attend the first ISKGA – www.iskga.com (International Sea Kayaking Guides Association) Advanced guide training programme with Sea Kayaking Cornwall.
In April 2013 a month after completing his training Shaun returned and officially joined the SKC TEAM. Shaun is now a director and business partner at Sea Kayaking Cornwall / ISKGA Advanced Guide and trainer.
Shaun loves guiding, experiential coaching and is always learning; this is instantly obvious when you see his enthusiasm for the sport and the marine environment. He gets invitations to a variety of events and symposiums and has a very personal coaching and guiding philosophy.
Shaun now represents and guides as part of the LENDAL NA & EXPEDITION PADDLER TEAM to locations all over the world.
The greatest calamity is not to have failed, but to have failed to try
As a kid in South Africa whatever there was to paddle growing up in a country with Sanctions imposed as a child meant, “You had what you had” I’m spoiled with choice now!
Life and my amazing family!
Jobs other than Kayaker:
I owned a design/printing company focusing on the music industry / owned an outdoor safari lodge / entrepreneur NOW FULL TIME GUIDE AND COACH! Businessman turned sea kayak guide just got to jump sometimes and see where you land!
Experiential learning and teaching, Helping people achieve their goals and dreams!
Working to a syllabus!
My Mother & late Father – who taught me that you can be whatever you want to be and achieve anything!
Personal biggest event/expedition:
Non-stop circumnavigation of Kefalonia Island Greece / Portuguese islands of Mozambique / Aegean Sea crossing from Athens to Turkey /Iceland Expedition 2018 – Truthfully every expedition I have ever been on or now lead, as I truly share in the magnitude it means to those involved. I am so lucky and blessed to lead these trips, which for so many people truly are “bucket list” trips!
Its all-just fuel! BUT a braai is top of the list! (South African word for BBQ)
Sea Kayaking Cornwall / Expedition Paddler / Lendal NA / Kokatat Ambassador 2018
Known as the “South African, Irish, Greek – SOULPADDLER” When I meet you I will tell you the story!
Happy to paddle anything!
I get something out of every location I go to that teaches me, feeds my soul and humbles me that it would be unfair to choose. I paddle the sea to learn and experience not to compete against anyone other than myself.
Attempting to circumnavigate a small island called Zakynthos in Greece 3 times and being sent home 3 times with force 8/9 BFT headwinds. Mother nature is in charge!
Favorite person to paddle with:
I would offend so many if I answered this in short – you know who you are!
Craziest kayak moment:
An expedition down the upper Zambezi in touring kayaks finishing just above the Victoria falls at a time people thought a civil war was going to start – didn’t have a clue about kayaking or what to expect. It was great, the human spirit is an amazing thing – not mine but the people I met along the way. You all started me doing expeditions – Thank you!
Scariest kayak moment:
Floating past Hippopotamus and crocodiles, after capsizing in a double with my late Dad and being stuck in a whirlpool for a while on the upper Zambezi – he talked of that experience for a long time!
Your Dream trip:
Anywhere with good people; every day on the water is a dream and experience to be cherished!
Big plans for the next 6 months/year:
Just shut up and paddle! Be a good husband, father and friend!