Dave and Katharines Blog

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Sailing home: 5000nm in 50 days non-stop from NE Brazil to SW UK

Posted by on May 2, 2017 in Survival | 0 comments

Bound for foreign lands and adventure, we left the UK in July 2008. After interviewing some breeding seabirds in the Caribbean, rounding South America in our eighty-year old sailing boat, running the continent, giving birth to Theo (at home due to various complications) we finally headed into Falmouth, direct from Cabe Delo, in Autumn 2015 with a pod of pilot whales (see Dave’s blog here for the full story).

In addition to deck-hand, Theo, who joined us for the first 9 months of his existence, we were assisted by Coattie the monk parakeet, whom (more…)

Heading into the Blue

Posted by on Feb 9, 2015 in Running | 0 comments

Hello from up a creek in Uruguay.

Captain Theo (and his Mother)

Captain Theo (and his Mother)

We’ve abandoned our running shoes & are soon to abandon dry land as we wait for a weather window to head out into the Southern Atlantic from the Rio Plata.

We left UK shores in 2008 and have since circumnavigated South America in our 80 year old wooden sailing boat, run it’s length, now we just need to plough c.6000 nautical miles to the Caribbean and then another 2-3000 to our fair isle home.

Our 6000nm route from Uruguay to the Caribbean following traditional trading routes for favourablecurrents & wind

Our 6000nm route from Uruguay to the Caribbean following traditional trading routes for favourable currents & wind

Our website and blog spot for our sailing shenanigans is www.listalight.net

Things have changed- we now have a new captain- Sir Theodore Lowrie- who will reach the tender age of 5 months on 14th February 2015. On his current sleeping quota we think he will be relaxed and ready for his challenge. His parents vague recollection of sleep should also serve them well for the night shifts that lie ahead.

Since Theo’s birth, we have presented to Exeter School on the expedition, how to plan an expedition and taken an A’level Geography Rainforest Case Study lesson. We also presented to D’overbroeck’s  College, Oxford and at the Royal Geographic Society for Sir Ranulph Fienne’s Tranglobe Expedition Trust in the company of truly fabled and magnificent story tellers, including: Robin Hanbury-Tenison, Ben Fogle and Ed Stafford. 

The lemons are packed – so hopefully we’ll have a few teeth between us by the end of the two or so months at sea. So now all we need is wind in our sails; the albatrosses are calling.


Our one week old son marches for the planet!

Posted by on Oct 17, 2014 in Alternative Energy, Conservation | 0 comments

One week after his birth (on 21st September 2014)  Theo, our son was with us in Newcastle on a climate change march set up by his Father, David.

David with Theo

David with Theo

David stood up in front of over 350 people in the town centre and read out a letter ‘from Theo’,

” Hi, my name is Theo and although you probably don’t know me yet, I am citizen 7 billion, 221 million, 25 thousand and 989th on this planet. I was born last week.

I wanted to say, “Hi” and to let you know that it has only been a short while, but I love this planet as it is.

I know you may think that growth or GDP, economic stability and global competitiveness are what I need. But what I really need is: clean air, clean water, birds to look at, bats to eat insects, bees to pollinate, lovely clean beaches to play on and not too many freak weather events.

When I am my Dad’s age, we will be in the year 2050 and I hope you can keep global temperatures to less than 2′ C. hotter than today, no more, please!

If I am lucky than I will even live to see the year 2100! I can take on the batten long before that, but I just ask that you don’t destroy my beautiful planet before I have even grown up! Thank you!

Good Luck in New York, not a place I know yet, we are depending on you.


Theodore Lowrie

Theodore Lowrie

To see the coverage in the regional paper on the march and our expedition, click here.


Join us at the BirdFair

Posted by on Aug 14, 2014 in Birdlife International, Birds, Conservation, Sponsorship and Donations | 0 comments

Dave and I are heading south this Friday 15th August. We’re catching the train to Rutland for our last migration (sadly not on foot!)  before the baby arrives in mid September (hopefully she/he doesn’t surface before!)

We’re joining forces with Swarovski-optiks our binocular sponsor for the expedition & will be presenting, “Running with Parrots, Anteaters & Snakes: 6,500 miles across South America” on Saturday @16.30. We’d love to see you there.

The BirdFair is an amazing international bird & wildlife emporium jostling with: talks, stalls, presentations, quizzes, competitions, kids activities, wildlife cruises, famous wildlife people, artwork…. you name it.

And best of all (more…)

The Ultimate Marathoners Return to the UK!

Posted by on Aug 9, 2014 in Birds, Conservation, Wildlife Moment Of The Week | 0 comments

Imagine running a marathon day after day. How about running six marathons a day for six weeks?! Well it may not be humanly possible, but as you walk to your local shop, to the allotments or playing fields, you could be in the presence of an animal that has done exactly that; the barn swallow.

Travelling over 6,500 miles from (more…)

A meeting with HRH Prince Charles

Posted by on Jul 17, 2014 in Conservation, Hero Of The Week, Uncategorized | 0 comments

I wrote a letter, sitting on the bank of a stream, my back nestled in the buttress roots of a spiralling Bolivian rainforest tree. Enormous plate-sized, electric-blue, morpho-butterflies wafted over my hand. Beads of sweat formed rivulets down my back and tiny fish darted past my toes.

The letter was to HRH Prince Charles about our expedition and how meeting him, a staunch advocate and conservationist of our natural world, would give us a tremendous boost during the many hot, sweaty, insect-infested miles that lay ahead.


Talking to HRH Prince Charles, 15 July 2014

Miraculously he wrote back saying,

“I am hugely impressed (more…)

Going nuts over Brazil Nuts (from Bolivia!)

Posted by on Jul 5, 2014 in Food and Nutrition | 0 comments

OK – so the running is over and our bodies are in repair, but so often our minds are carried back to South America, the expedition and the incredible landscape by the many reminders we see in the products that we consume here at home in the UK. Sugar from Paraguay, Brazil nuts from Bolivia etc etc. We feel we know South America so well now, and how can we be sure that the products we buy here in Europe, and consumers throughout the world buy, are any good for the continent where they come from?

We caused a bit of a stir by criticizing “clictivism” in an article published (more…)

Runner’s World: The Limits of Endurance

Posted by on Jun 19, 2014 in Gear and Equipment, Photos, Running, Survival | 0 comments

We appear in the July 2014 issue of Runner’s World!

Fantastic talking about the expedition again; the wildlife, wildernesses, risks and survival techniques……


Runner's World 1 JulyIMG_4695

Expedition Comms Map: Staying In Touch On The Run

Posted by on Dec 19, 2013 in Gear and Equipment, Survival | 0 comments

Staying in touch with sponsors, supporters, family and friends whilst on the run in wonderfully wild but disconnected places presents some challenges, especially when you have to carry all your kit in the running  trailer, but this is how we do it:


5KMP Comms Map




*A special thank you to Our grant Sculpt the Future Foundation, and technology sponsors Ipadio and PowerTraveller

“Stop Drifting, Start Rowing”; Roz Savage’s Pacific Ocean Book

Posted by on Dec 19, 2013 in Conservation, Hero Of The Week | 0 comments

We’re back on our 80 yr old home (our boat) in Uruguay & remarkably she’s still floating! Before we left the UK I managed to get my hands on a copy of Roz Savage’s, “Stop Drifting, Start Rowing”. Amazing! A rare, up-close & personal glimpse of life at sea in the Pacific through the eyes of a world first ocean rower. From a bum red-raw with rowing, to capsizing, dealing with raucous booby-bird neighbours and gliding through slicks of plastic rubbish. It navigates the reader through the trials and intense beauty of life on the high seas, as well as exploring a different perspective on life…. A fantastic Christmas present to cast your mind into another world!

To read this in Spanish too, click here.