Most people find their spark in the wilderness. However, wildlife figherfighter/emergency technician, Stephen Underhay, does quite the opposite. Between repelling out of helicopters to put out wild fires, navigating air ambulances through the Canadian Rockies, and working on the acreage of farmland him and his father built; this modern day Smoky the Bear is far from ordinary.
"I live life knowing that I don't want to be an old man with no stories, so I'm constantly taking advantage of opportunities to try new things."
Stephen's love for the outdoors began at an early age. Growing up in the wilderness Yellowknife, Canada; hiking, climbing, and paddling became a part of life. During his last year in Yellowknife, Stephen once again straying from ordinary, spent it living on a houseboat.
"Growing up enjoying Canada's arctic (even in far below sub zero temperatures) has created a yearning for wide-open spaces deep within my soul."
Now, Stephen resides in Alberta, Canada working as a firefighter. Keeping busy at work doesn't keep him away from the wild, however.
"There is something about turning away from the city lights and enjoying mountain solitude that calls to me. My job is fast-paced, so enjoying the wilderness has a calming effect on me."
Fortunately, Stephen's career has afforded him to do quite a bit of traveling. From traveling the Cayes of Belize, to surfing down Nicoya Peninsula of Costa rica; mopeding across Dominican Republic during hurricane season, to horseback ridding through the Santa Marta Sierra Nevada's of Columbia; this man is the definition of adventure travel!
"My greatest adventure was spending six weeks touring southern Africa exploring the culture, landscape, and wildlife."
It's not just Stephen's adventurous spirit that makes him a great Adventure Ambassador, but also his love for people. Whether it's making the perfect cup of coffee for his brothers and sisters on the top of a summit, learning new cultures, or saving stranger's lives in a fire; Stephen has a genuine compassion for others.
"I believe that positive interaction with other people is one of the keys to being happy with yourself."
Stephen truly believes in the little acts of kindness, and the big impacts they can lead to.
"If we can express small acts of kindness every day, to both those we love and complete strangers, I think the world will slowly become a more compassionate place."
Here at thisworldexists, we couldn't agree more, or be more pleased to welcome Stephen Underhay to the family!
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