I used to believe that searching for sponsors was like asking companies for free stuff, which seemed strange to me. But that was naive.
Later, I learned how potential sponsors can profit from my services and that these connections can grow into substantial partnerships on eye level, with mutual understanding and benefit.
When I was planning my traverse of the northern Wrangell St. Elias National Park in eastern Alaska in 2010, I was facing a logistical problem: the inner park is cut off from civilization by two huge glacier rivers. To enter this area, one would have to fly in with a bush plane or bring a portable boat to cross the rivers with.
“Packrafts” were the perfect solution: Ultralight boats with minimum packed size that allow you to not only cross rivers, fjords and lakes but are also built for heavy whitewater rafting. Since then I have used packrafts for combined trekking and river adventures worldwide. These portable and yet robust boats have broadened not only my mind – the idea turned into a sport that has long become popular in the alps as well.
Anfibio Packrafting is Europe’s most renowned producer and retailer of packrafts. The company offers a wide range of boats for different purposes, plus it manufacturers their own dry suits, paddles and other accessories – all designed to keep weight to a minimum, which is the core aspect for carrying it in a backpack. Based in Germany, Anfibio Packrafting is a local outfitter that puts tireless effort into new ideas and high quality developments, which gratefully I’m now taking part in as a sponsor partner.
When I first started traveling, photography seemed a burden to me. This changed when I realized, that through my camera I became much more aware of the beauty of the earth; I saw countless little things which I otherwise wouldn’t have noticed. Photography opened my eyes for the wonders of the world.
It also helped me communicate what it feels like to be out in the wilderness. Before, I only had my words. When I talked about carrying a heavy backpack through the woods, about bitter cold nights or the solitude I often found myself in, people didn’t seem to grasp what it is that motivates me. Today, when someone asks me why I traveling the way I do, I usually answer with pictures. That seems to be a language everybody understands.
My first DSLR was a Nikon D7000 I bought in 2011, followed by the Nikon D800E and the three f/2.8 zooms 14-24, 24-70 and 70-200 a year later. Now I’m using the Nikon Z system, which combines outstanding picture and video quality with a significant reduction in weight. Changing to a mirrorless full frame system has not only made my camera bag lighter, but has also helped me rediscover the joy in photography that I experienced when I first started using Nikon cameras.
Since 2019 I’m being supported by Nikon Switzerland.
In 2011, when preparing for a six-week long trekking trip through the Brooks Range in northern Alaska, I asked two bush pilots to drop me food from the air since there was no other possibility to resupply on the way. The two of them ran a logistics company and had occasionally been looking for someone who could help extend their business by leading wilderness expeditions in the Arctic for them. One year later Freedom Trips was found: my two partners took care of the managing and flying side (most of the trips were so remote that they needed fly-in fly-outs) and I was responsible for the guiding. In 2015 I stepped back from Freedom Trips and started Outventurous. However, Freedom Trips will remain my partner for future Alaska trips and I’m very much looking forward to operating with them again.
Want to become a partner?
Please let me know if you think that your company and Outventurous have common interests and could profit from each other. I’m looking forward to new ideas and inspiring partnerships, as long as they won’t cause disadvantages for my existing partners.