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    Alastair Goodridge

    Committed | Adventurous

     

    Mini Bio

    I’ve had a varied and adventurous career, including working as an outdoor instructor, leading overseas expeditions, working on Australian cattle stations and driving trucks around West Africa.

    I now live in the Cairngorm’s National Park and spend as much time as possible outside, walking, wild camping, skiing and long distance horse riding.

    I am interested in sustainable forestry and I am currently training my horse to extract timber from the forest. I am passionate about the environment and enjoy sharing my knowledge of natural history and wildlife with others.

    Place to play

    The Cairngorms National Park. I love the wild spaces and enjoy big days in the hills as well as relaxed exploring in the glens and forests.

    Not a lot of people know this

    I have passed my Chinese driving test… twice!

    Qualifications Read More
    • Winter + Summer Mountain Leader
    • Mountain Instructors Award
    • Trail Cycle Leader
    • HGV + PCV license
    Experience Read More

    I’ve been leading groups outdoors in one form or another for the last 15 years, including working as an outdoor instructor in the UK and leading developmental youth expeditions overseas. I’ve spent many years leading overland expeditions around the developing world, including pioneering adventures in West Africa. I’m fortunate to now live in the Cairngorms National Park: I love the wild spaces and enjoy big days in the hills as well as relaxed exploring in the glens and forests. I spend as much time as possible outside, walking, wild camping, skiing and horse riding.

    Biggest Adventure Read More

    I cycled the length of the UK aged 15, and across South America a few years later. I’ve driven from the UK to China and back, back to the UK from India, and pioneered trips in West Africa. While driving the Karakoram Highway in Pakistan, I drove a 16-tonne truck on to 2 small boats lashed together to cross Lake Attabad, formed by a massive landslide. On honeymoon, we rode horses around Mongolia in the winter, visiting an ice festival and camel racing festival then took the train back to the UK.

    Surely the biggest adventure is always what lies ahead?

    Specialist Subject Read More

    I am particularly interested in Scotland’s natural environment, including geology, flora and fauna, agriculture, woodland and land management. I also work in sustainable forestry and use my horse to extract timber from the forest. I have undertaken extensive practical research on the beers and whiskies of Scotland, and am always happy to share my knowledge over a pint or a dram.

    Publications Read More

    I’ve been interviewed on BBC News and featured in The Times, The Financial Times and The Telegraph about my work pioneering adventure travel in West Africa. I’ve also contributed to Bradt Travel Guides of the region.

    Adventurer's Stories about Alastair

    Alastair chose the order of the walks according to the weather forecast.
    He discussed the next day’s walk with us every evening.
    He was extremely knowledgeable about every aspect of the area.
    He could not have done more to make our trip an outstanding success.

    Catharine Wall
    Wilderness Walking - High Points of the Cairngorms National Park
    Reviewed on 21/09/2021

    Al & John were knowledgeable about the area& history along the West Highland way, helpful and gave us clear briefing on each day !

    Man Ying Lam
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 16/09/2021

    John and Alistair were exceptional. They had a large group and managed to keep the faster hikers happy and the slower hikers safe. We cannot thank them enough for the care and thoughtfulness. They made our hike along the West Highland Way a trip of a lifetime.

    Kathleen Alves
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 11/09/2021

    John and Al were absolutely terrific . I hoe that one , other or both are on the next trip I book.

    Marianne Ismail
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 10/09/2021

    We enjoyed all our guides, Shauna, Rebecca, Alastair, as well as Rory from the sea kayaking trip.
    They all had great knowledge, could adapt to all of us, including 2 14 years old girls, and were very pleasant to be with

    Olivier Fusil
    21WSTM Tailor Made trips
    Reviewed on 15/08/2021

    Ken was extremely knowledgeable, courteous, great company and an excellent guide. His driving was impeccable too. It felt as if he went the extra mile and it was clear how much he loved his job which added to our wonderful experience.

    Lawrence was great too and an added bonus! Again courteous, great company and knowledgeable.

    Tracy Penny
    Wilderness Walking - Isle of Skye
    Reviewed on 26/06/2021

    Ken and Lawrence were simply brilliant

    Grace Youell
    Wilderness Walking - Isle of Skye
    Reviewed on 21/06/2021

    Both guides were excellent, with local knowledge, poetry and thoughtfulness. Nothing was too much trouble, and due (I assume) to covid felt very spoilt with 2 guides and vehicles between 6. More guidance on what to tip guides would be useful. We tiped as a group which proved problematic.

    Christine Stray
    Wilderness Walking - Isle of Skye
    Reviewed on 21/06/2021

    Felt very spoilt with 2 guides between six of us. Gold star service, nothing too much trouble and so knowledgeable. Nothing was too much trouble. Great senses of humour too.

    Christine Stray
    Wilderness Walking - Isle of Skye
    Reviewed on 14/06/2021

    Really first class. Pitched just right, authoritative, empathetic, friendly, approachable. knowledgeable and passionate.

    Philip Youell
    Wilderness Walking - Isle of Skye
    Reviewed on 14/06/2021

    Very helpful and learned about the area

    Alison Finger
    Wilderness Walking - The Knoydart Peninsula
    Reviewed on 14/09/2019

    Al obviously has a lot of experience. He was well organised, knowledgeable, enthusiastic, encouraging and has a good sense of humour.

    Sue Price
    Wilderness Walking - The Knoydart Peninsula
    Reviewed on 03/09/2019

    Extensive knowledge of the area and the walking routes

    Pamela Grieve
    Wilderness Walking - The Knoydart Peninsula
    Reviewed on 03/09/2019

    Guided- very knowledgeable and helpful, clearly loves his work and cares about it

    Anne-Marie Heim
    Wilderness Walking - The Knoydart Peninsula
    Reviewed on 03/09/2019

    Al was a very considerate and knowledgeable guide. He briefed us each evening about the next day’s activities and during the walks took time to give us background on the history and geology of our location. He was safety conscious and helpful to each member of the group.

    Keith May
    Wilderness Walking - The Knoydart Peninsula
    Reviewed on 27/08/2019

    Alistair was a super guide!
    The walks were well paced and adapted according to the weather.
    He has a wealth of knowledge of the area - the geography, history, wildlife and gave us a real insight into life in the highlands and islands of north west Scotland.

    Christine May
    Wilderness Walking - The Knoydart Peninsula
    Reviewed on 27/08/2019

    Ali a été un guide comme on voudrait toujours en avoir; je ferais un autre voyage guidé par lui avec plaisir. Toujours patient, avec un coup de main au bon moment. Son choix de parcours en fonction de la météo a été sans faille.
    Les informations qu'il nous a données «in situ» nous font encore mieux apprécier les lieux parcourus.

    Ali has been a guide as one would always like to have; I would make another trip guided by him with pleasure. Always patient, with a hand at the right time. His choice of course according to the weather was flawless.
    The information he gave us "in situ" makes us even better appreciate the places visited.

    Raymonde Veilleux
    Wilderness Walking - The Knoydart Peninsula
    Reviewed on 21/08/2019

    Very competant and able to adapt the itinerary to compensate for veryi different weather. I had no doubts about his ability to deal with any incidents - but we didn't have any due to good planning.

    Mike Norman
    Wilderness Walking - The Knoydart Peninsula
    Reviewed on 21/08/2019

    Very knowledgeable and took great care of us!

    Lois Bruce
    Wilderness Walking - The Knoydart Peninsula
    Reviewed on 20/08/2019

    Our guide Alistair was very knowledgeable about the history, flora and fauna of the area. The walks were lead at a suitable pace for all to enjoy. Walks were adapted well to meet the weather / conditions underfoot.

    Janet Milne
    Wilderness Walking - The Knoydart Peninsula
    Reviewed on 20/08/2019

    Alistair was excellent. He had a great in depth knowledge of the history, geology fauna and flora of the area. I learned loads. He made sure to get to know everyone and make sure everyone was accommodated and got the most out of the trip. He skilfully arranged the walks to make the most of the weather and give us the best views. He was a pleasure to spend the week with.

    Fiona Parkinson
    Wilderness Walking - The Knoydart Peninsula
    Reviewed on 20/08/2019

    Alastair was really friendly and very knowledgeable. Great at adapting routes to the weather conditions and provided loads of great information about the region

    Eve Young
    Wilderness Walking - The Knoydart Peninsula
    Reviewed on 20/08/2019

    Al was really great. He is incredibly knowledgeable. He was also great at improvising if the weather or traffic required us to change plans at the last minute.

    Kieran Gostin
    19WSTM Tailor Made trips
    Reviewed on 12/08/2019

    Al was the best. He always had our best interests at heart. He became one of us, not just a guide, that's saying alot.

    Jon Gotfredson
    Wilderness Walking - Cairngorms National Park & Royal Deeside
    Reviewed on 07/08/2019

    Alistair and Lotte helped make my WHW experience outstanding. Having hiked the Great Glen Way a few years ago, self-guided, I was hesitant to do a guided hike. The people in our group and the guides, Alistair and Lotte, made this an unforgettable experience. (I will never look at lichen the same) They were both knowledgable, helpful and friendly. Amazing experience with the whole group!

    Beth Baker
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 05/08/2019

    Alastair and Lotte could not have been any friendlier and were always interested in hearing about individual 's backgrounds throughout the day. They had a wealth of knowledge about our surroundings and the whole group took away memories for life. It was great that we could unwind in the evenings for a drink with our guides as it gave them a chance to reveal their stories to the group.

    Kenneth Barclay
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 18/07/2019

    From making sure everyone was enjoying the experience, to keeping us moving (and balancing with stops, usually at scenic points along the way) and simply being friendly companions, it would be difficult to top Alastair and Lotte. As a bonus, they gave me great feedback and food for thought about possibly leading hiking groups myself back in the U.S., when I asked them about it.

    Joel Eisen
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 18/07/2019

    As stated before Lotte and Alistair were awesome. Loved the info Al shared with us. It was never boring. That guy would make a great teacher! Lotte as well!

    Melissa Cissell
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 15/07/2019

    Alastair and Lotte were always available and kind. They looked after the whole party and kept everybody safe without mothering. They were knowledgeable and interesting in their stories about the area. And excellent listeners!!!

    Brenda Craig
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 11/07/2019

    Our guides, Lotte and Alistair, were both excellent, and complemented each other beautifully. They were both highly experienced, knowledgeable and skilful outdoors people, with great interpersonal skills. They were both also lovely, warm,likeable and cheerful, with relaxed demeanour..we felt very secure. They kept the group together over long distances, without ever herding us, or making anyone feel they had to go at a pace that was not comfortable. Even though myself and partner both arrived with colds, we felt the guides were totally supportive and non judgemental, allowing us to make decisions about whether or not to skip a day.
    Their maturity and kindness were evident when one of the group members faced an unexpected tragedy outside our journey.
    We have been on many guided hiking trips in many countries, over the years. Lotte and Alistair rate amongst the best. Having initially wanted to have a self guided trip, we felt very lucky that circumstances placed us on this guided trip with Lotte and Alistair.

    Rosemary Campbell
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 11/07/2019

    Alistair and Lotte answered any and every question, and were extremely good natured throughout the trip.

    Mary Marler
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 11/07/2019

    Alastair was amazing - he was friendly, patient, accomodating, and knowledgeable. I very much enjoyed walking and talking with him and do hope to book another trip with his as the guide in the future.

    Amanda Thomson
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 13/06/2019

    Our guide Alastair was very competent and had a lot to share.
    He almost always had an aswer to my numerous questions aboute the flora and fauna of Scottland.

    He did a good job keeping the group together despite the difference in speed.

    Very easy going and dedicated!

    Ulrika Örarbäck
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 13/06/2019

    Alistair did an excellent job letting us know what to expect each day (with the exception of not telling us about one big hill on the second day!), keeping track of differently paced walkers, and providing interesting information about the history of the area. He was upbeat, knowledgeable, kind, and humorous.

    Julie Zavoral
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 24/10/2018

    Alastair was an excellent guide. He managed a large group of differently paced walkers very well, and always let us know what to expect each day. He was very knowledgeable about the landscape, history (both human and natural), and the flora and fauna we passed, plus whisky recommendations.

    Jennifer Waring
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 15/10/2018

    Alistair was an excellent guide who managed the different walking abilities within the group tactfully and successfully. He was very knowledgeable, approachable and pleasant.

    Lesley Foster
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 14/10/2018

    Very personable and knowledgeable

    Bob Flynn
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 11/10/2018

    Alistair was informative about the areas we were walking through , managed to cater for various walking abilities, knowledgeable about whisky and had a good sense of humour.

    Sue Price
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 11/10/2018

    Alistair was a awesome guide! He was patient and very knowledgeable about the route and surroundings. He seemed to take a genuine interest in each of the people on the trip.

    Tina Zavoral
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 11/10/2018

    Guides were wonderful

    Michael Fraser
    Scotland: Self-Drive and Hiking in the Highlands
    Reviewed on 28/09/2018

    Alasdair was knowledgable and professional, talking about history, geography, botany and meteorology with a passionate and engaging interest.

    Alice Fraser
    Scotland: Self-Drive and Hiking in the Highlands
    Reviewed on 21/09/2018

    Alastair is a wonderful, organized, calm leader and clearly knows the area, history, flora and fauna.

    Laura Stusser-McNeil
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 18/09/2018

    Very knowledgeable and friendly. I appreciated Alastair’s straightforward approach and his patience even though we had a very wide range of fitness levels within our group.

    Fiona Cameron
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 13/09/2018

    Very helpful to everyone in the group. Went over and beyond. Great information details. Kind, considerate, and above all patient.

    Dawn Greenwald
    Wilderness Walking - Isle of Skye
    Reviewed on 15/08/2018

    None better. Knowledgeable, competent, and caring, especially when faced with varying levels of hiking abilities.

    Linda Lippman
    Wilderness Walking - Isle of Skye
    Reviewed on 14/08/2018

    Alistair was wonderful. He grasped our relative abilities very quickly. he was always there to lend a helping hand when I wobbled on a rock, or sank into the peat bog. He gave us lots of information about the history, the natural environment and so on. He drove beautifully and he was great company!

    Gail Kent
    Wilderness Walking - Isle of Skye
    Reviewed on 13/08/2018

    Alastair was the perfect guide for our group. We had very diverse hiking skills and he was able to ensure each of us participated and saw the sights while keeping us all safe and happy!

    Barbara Nelson
    Wilderness Walking - Isle of Skye
    Reviewed on 10/08/2018

    Alistair was wonderful. He managed the different personalities and skill levels with ease. He was so knowledgeable across such a broad range of topics and happy to answer everyone’s questions. He was always on time with a smile. For me personally his words of encouragement and mental as well as physical help were invaluable. If I ever take another trip I want to go with him!! He makes you feel secure in his abilities which for a novice was extremely important. Don’t lose him!!

    Randy Kamen
    Wilderness Walking - Isle of Skye
    Reviewed on 07/08/2018

    This was my first guided tour at age 68. My late husband and I did much traveling from age of 21. I have nothing to compare except I doubt anyone could guide us better than Alastair. Eight people all with different needs, expectations and desires and then adding on personalities is a huge responsibility. Alastair made it look easy as he taught us about the history of your lovely land, knowledge of your local plants and wildlife. I asked for a little time to shop and someone else wanted a tour of a whiskey distillery and he made both possible (last one kept us out of pouring rain after a hike). How lucky were we that he was our guide!

    Patricia Blaszko
    Wilderness Walking - Isle of Skye
    Reviewed on 06/08/2018

    Already commented. Loved Alister and would seek out a trip with him again. He does not over guide and true to control group. He gets his job done but let’s everyone enjoy everything. And his stories and experiences were so memorizing. I am so glad he was willing to share

    Maydelis Torres
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 21/04/2018

    My trip was guided by Alastair Goodridge. He's informative and very knowledgeable about the history and legends of the area. He explained a lot about the diverse flora and fauna that I’d miss if I opted to do the way unguided. He is very professional, flexible, conscientious, and calm!

    Zada Ghanayem
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 19/04/2018

    Alisster was chilled, patient, didn't rush us and stress us around... He was caring and left us on our own pace as we were a small group... Kept checking on everyone, and provided loads of information about nature, vegetation, animals, history and answered all the questions we had in mind... Also he helped me in managing my meals according to my dietary needs... Super calm and polite...

    Melia Rabadi
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 19/04/2018

    Alastair's Gallery

    © Alastair Goodridge / Wilderness Scotland

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