Kelly Durst - Canada

As a trained Beautician you might not expect Kelly to have any desire to get dirt under her nails, let alone go four months living from a kayak and a bicycle. But as someone who is easily distracted by flowers, bugs, and nature Kelly is at her happiest when she is outdoors wandering and getting lost in her surroundings. However growing up in the suburbs of southern Ontario Kelly's travel and camping experiences were limited to a few road trips in the area and a couple of all-inclusive vacations south to the Carribean, until 2008 when she realized something was missing. 

 

Anxious to experience something different Kelly jumped at the chance to visit a friend who was teaching English in Japan. After an awesome trip East her arrival back to Ontario was far from exciting and the idea of returning to her secure lifestyle became unbearable.  The following spring Kelly packed her bags and moved out west to beautiful Lake Louise in the heart of the Rockies. Living in the mountains gave Kelly a new appreciation for the outdoors as she taught herself to snowboard, hiked to the top of her first mountain, and explored the breathtaking scenery. By fall of 2012 she realized she was ready to travel outside of North America and experience new cultures, "but where?" she asked herself. Then as if on cue Kelly was introduced to Paul through a mutual friend after a long day at work. As she listened to Paul chat away about his adventures on a four-wheeled bicycle and of his trip on a traditional timber raft like Huck Finn she became inspired by his eclectic means of travel. One bottle of wine later and she knew she would be on the next adventure, by March of 2013 she agreed to join him on the tandem kayak adventure around the Baltic Sea.

 

At the beginning of June 2013 with the knowledge that she had no idea what she was getting herself into Kelly flew into Copenhagen, Denmark and travelled up to Halmstad, Sweden where she met up with Paul and the kayak. From Halmstad the four month adventure began, having no kayaking experience and zero to little upper arm and body strength Kelly hopped into the kayak and didn’t stop paddling until Helsinki, Finland. In Helsinki two pre-loved bicycles were purchsed and both Kelly and Paul cycled the remaining six Baltic Countries home to England. Now living in Exmouth, England she plans to discover the UK until the next adventure is dreamt up.

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