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Life as a Full-Time Adventurer: An Interview With Dave Cornthwaite

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to drop everything and start living as if your biggest dreams were immediately possible?

The other day I had the distinct pleasure of catching up with Dave Cornthwaite, a unique adventurer living just like this. Though you’ve probably never heard of him, his story is incredible. From the bank of the Mississippi River on his latest excursion—solo paddle-boarding from the source of the Mississippi in Minnesota to The Atlantic—Dave hopped on the phone to tell me all about the last five years of his life spent avoiding convention, earning a living as a modern adventurer, and doing good in the world by pursuing his own big goals.

You can listen to our whole conversation below. There’s much to learn from Dave’s story for established and aspiring adventurers alike. And Dave’s British accent makes it much more fun to listen to.


[audio:https://www.riskology.co/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/dave-cornthwaite1.mp3|titles=Interview with Dave Corthwaite]

If you don’t have time for the whole call, here are some of the highlights you can might like:

[1:00] – The origin story of Dave and his “Expedition 1000”

[2:20] – The journey from stressed out graphic designer to full-time adventurer

[6:50] – How do you make a living as an adventurer?

[8:10] – “It’s cheaper to stand-up paddle-board down the Mississippi for three months than it is to rent an apartment in London for one month.”

[12:15] – Do you ever worry that you’re misunderstood?

[15:30] – How to do good for others while having a great time

[19:50] – Unconventional adventure and world records broken

[22:40] – Do you ever get bored?

[24:43] – What it really takes to pursue a life of adventure

[27:25] – How to become the “best in the world” at what you do

[30:50] – “The Philosophy of Adventure”

There’s a lot you can take away from a story like Dave’s, but the most important thing I got from our call was that the decision to do what you really want with your life is only hard until you actually make it. Once you commit, the path becomes much more clear.

After our call, Dave finished his paddle-board journey down the Mississippi, completing his fourth 1,000+ mile expedition. Go check out Dave’s Expedition 1000 to learn more and wish him luck on the next big challenge.