Interview with a past DJL Instructor and future hero!
It is a great achievement for all our of students who come to Davy Jones Locker and become certified divers, whether it’s completing an Open Water course or progressing through the Divemaster and Instructor internships. Sometimes you meet people like Ash Dykes adventurer and explorer, who takes the level of adventure beyond what what most of us would even dream of.
Ash Dykes adventurer and explorer
When Ash came to Davy Jones Locker to take his diving Internship he already had a history of setting himself challenges and consistently overcoming them. After completing his Divemaster and Instructor courses he worked at here at DJL before setting his sights on crossing entire countries unaided on foot. His first success was trekking across Mongolia and recently became the first person to traverse Madagascar. We caught up with Ash and managed to get a brief Q & A with him before he sets off again on his travels…
1. Hi Ash hope your well, congratulations on another successful expedition, this time making it across Madagascar. After conquering 2 countries on foot what is next on the agenda for you?
I now have the footage I self-filmed across Madagascar in post-production. It should hopefully spur on a book publish if the documentary gets broadcast & I have a U.K theatre tour coming up next year with Speakers from the Edge.
I’m also trying to put my 10kg that I lost back on by eating lots of food. I will be training hard again soon and of course…. planning another mega expedition. It may potentially be another world first, but for now – my lips are sealed!
2. What was the first luxurious thing you did once you had completed the Madagascar expedition?
On completion, we were offered a whole suite in the biggest hotel in Diego (North Mada), with all the free food we liked. I really didn’t know where to start…….. I think it was with the peanut butter!
3, What has been your most difficult challenge so far?
a – crossing Mongolia
b – traversing Madagascar
c – surviving your Snorkel Test when you finished your Divemaster course?
Hmm, crocodiles, wolves, malaria or having to drink a bucket full of unknown shit that you guys put in it?……… Throw me to the crocodiles any day over that! Haha!
4, What has been the worst thing that you have had to do during one of your expeditions?
Having to cross a crocodile infested river at night time, in the rainy season (current was strong) in which we almost lost our photographer who was hanging helplessly off the hands of me & my guide.
5, have any of your experiences at DJL (in and out of the water) been useful in a survival situation?
Haha! I always say that my 2.5 years with DJL in Thailand prepared me to face the heat of the Gobi Desert. I was very close to death, but pushed through to make the next water source.
At DJL I was taught very good navigation whilst diving. It definitely does help to navigate my way across countries using features.
6, Do you have any plans to expand your adventures and expeditions to underwater environments such as wrecks or cave exploration?
I would love to and with the help of DJL. Maybe this is something we could look at in the near future!
7, If I manage to walk from one end of Koh Tao to the other can i expect the same level of fame and recognition as you have achieved?
I would highly recommend that you don’t do that, especially in-between the times of 3am and 7am. It seems at this time people tend to wonder around the island like zombies in search of something!
But if you make it, then yes – expect a lot of recognition & a huge snorkel test on completion.
8, Would you like to team up with Bear Grylls at some point in the future or is he your sworn enemy whos crown you are planning to take?
Bear Grylls has actually been a big inspiration, but taking his crown is what needs to be done! Haha!
9, Will Wales beat England and win the 6 Nations?
Without a doubt, do the English even play rugby? 😉
10, Do you have a message for the Davy Jones Locker team as we all miss you being around 🙂
I hope it’s all still as crazy and great fun as it used to be, I miss you all on Koh Tao & on Koh Lipe!!
I’ll soon be back for some more diving & drinking but promise to keep my shirt on this time!! 😀
Tim will especially be happy with that!!!
Thanks mate, take care of yourself, we look forward to hearing about your next adventure !
Ash Dykes – Traversing Madagascar (clip)