Speaker Spike Reid is the first person to paddleboard the River Ganges | Adventurer | Environmental Campaigner
Speaker Spike Reid is the first person to stand-up paddleboard the length of the River Ganges. The pioneering 98-day journey down the most-polluted major river in the world aimed to raise awareness of the excessive singleuse plastic that ends up in the Ganges, other waterways, and the oceans. The expedition was featured on Discovery Channel India and BBCs The Travel Show.
Spikes shorter expeditions include trekking in Afghanistan, the first paddleboard circumnavigation of Martinique, and first ascents of mountains in Siberia and Tajikistan. In addition to personal expeditions, he is an International Mountain Leader and takes tours into remote regions overseas for both group of adults and groups of teenagers.
In 2011, Speaker Spike Reid and his team in the Arctic were attacked by a polar bear. One of the group, Horatio Chapple, was tragically killed before the bear could be shot. The animal then attacked Spike savagely before he was able to reload the rifle and shoot the bear. The team of teenagers he had been leading kept him alive until the emergency services evacuated them all. Nominated for his actions in the Arctic and for work he had done to inspire young people, the following year Spike ran with the Olympic Torch on the first day of the relay.
In 2008, Speaker Spike Reid and two friends won the first Royal Geographical Society and Land Rover bursary. He led the team on a circumnavigation of the world, following the line of 50°N, investigating the social impact of climate change along that shared latitude. After completing the expedition, Spike worked at the RGS for over three years in events and was inspired by a great range of adventurous speakers there. He subsequently supported Sir Ranulph Fienness The Coldest Journey expedition with education engagement in the UK.
At university Spike designed a new extreme sport concept, the Slegoon, which went on to win a national design competition. It achieved international acclaim for the potential excitement and high levels of risk for users, although the Slegoon has not been developed further yet. Following graduation, Spike was elected (and reelected) as President of the Students Union, representing over 30,000 students for two years.
Speaker Spike Reid is a confident and experienced public speaker. He has delivered a wide range of talks at the RGS, Adventure Travel Show, Destinations Show, Explorers Connect, YesStories and Tales of Adventure; in addition to conference, after dinner, school and university presentations.
Spike has travelled to over 70 countries and is a keen photographer, writer, sailor, openwater swimmer, calligrapher, rock climber, cyclist, unicyclist and stand-up paddleboarder.