BEAR GRYLLS

Posted: December 10, 2008 by Shishir Gupta in Television Personalities
Tags: , , ,

Edward Michael Grylls better known as Bear Grylls (born 7 June 1974) is a British adventurer and writer currently best known for his popular television series Born Survivor (Man vs. Wild in the US).

bear gryllsBorn : 7 June 1974  (age 34) Bembridge, Isle of Wight, UK
Residence :  Barge moored by Battersea Bridge on the River Thames 
                      An island on Llŷn Peninsula, North Wales
Occupation : Professional Adventurer, Author, Motivational Speaker, Television Presenter
Spouse(s) :  Shara Cannings Knight
Children:  Jesse and Marmaduke

PERSONAL LIFE
Grylls was raised in Bembridge on the Isle of Wight. He is the son of the late Conservative party politician Sir Michael Grylls and Sally Grylls, the former Sarah Ford. His maternal grandmother was Patricia Ford, an Ulster Unionist Party MP. He has one sibling, an elder sister, Lara.
Grylls was educated at Ludgrove School, Eton College, and Birkbeck, University of London, where he graduated with a degree, obtained part-time, in Hispanic studies in 2002. He is also a second dan black belt in Shotokan karate. He can speak English, Spanish, and French. Grylls has a strong Christian faith, and described his faith in an interview with Channel 4 as being the ‘backbone’ in his life.
Grylls has been married since 2000, he and his wife Shara Grylls (née Cannings Knight) have two sons, Jesse and Marmaduke. Their third child, a boy, is due in January 2009.

bear grylls

CAREER

  • MILITARY
    After leaving school, Grylls went climbing in the Himalayan mountains of Sikkim and West Bengal. He then joined the British Army’s Special Forces reserve, serving for three years as a Specialist Combat Survival Instructor and Patrol Medic with the 21 SAS regiment. His military service ended in 1997 due to a parachuting accident he suffered the previous year during a training exercise in Kenya. His canopy ripped at 1600 feet (500 m), partially opening, causing him to fall and land on his parachute pack on his back, which broke three vertebrae, and left him struggling to feel his legs. Grylls later said of the accident, “I should have cut the main parachute and gone to the reserve but thought there was time to resolve the problem”. Grylls spent the next 18 months in rehabilitation at Headley Court and, with his military service over, directed his efforts into trying to get well enough to fulfill his childhood dream of climbing Mount Everest.
    Grylls has since been awarded the honorary rank of Lieutenant Commander in the UK’s Royal Naval Reserve for services to both charity and human endeavour.
  • CIVILIAN
    Outside of TV, Grylls sometimes works as a professional motivational speaker and trainer for City Speakers International. Grylls entered television work with an appearance in an advertisement for Sure deodorant, featuring his ascent of Mount Everest, compared with what really made him sweat (giving a motivational talk to an audience). Grylls has been a guest on many television programs, including Friday Night with Jonathan Ross, The Oprah Winfrey Show, Late Night with Conan O’Brien, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Attack of the Show, The Late Show with David Letterman, and Jimmy Kimmel Live!.
    Grylls has hosted and produced four television series of his own, two of which are Escape to the Legion and Man vs. Wild. The final two are the first and second series of Born Survivor: Bear Grylls.
    Grylls also has his own outdoor survival clothing line.

CHARITIES
Grylls has a close relationship with several charitable organisations, many of his expeditions and stunts have raised large sums of money for them. Grylls is an ambassador for The Prince’s Trust, an organisation which provides training, financial, and practical support to young people in Britain. He is also vice president for The JoLt Trust, a small charity that takes disabled, disadvantaged, abused or neglected young people on challenging month-long expeditions.
Global Angels, a UK charity which seeks to aid needing children around the world, were the beneficiaries of his 2007 attempt to take a powered paraglider higher than Mount Everest. Grylls’s attempt to hold the highest ever dinner party at 25,000 feet was in aid of The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Scheme, and launched the 50th anniversary of the Awards. His attempt to circumnavigate Britain on jet skis raised money for the Royal National Lifeboat Institution. Grylls’ Everest climb was in aid of SSAFA Forces Help, a British-based charitable organisation set up to help former, and serving members of the British Armed Forces, and their families and dependents. His 2003 Arctic expedition detailed in the book Facing the Frozen Ocean was in aid of The Prince’s Trust. His 2005 attempt to paramotor over the Angel Falls was in aid of the charity Hope and Homes for Children.

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TELEVISION
Escape to the Legion
Grylls filmed a four-part documentary in 2005, called Escape to the Legion, which followed Grylls and eleven other UK recruits in the French Foreign Legion, as they endured the month-long basic desert training in the Sahara. The show was broadcast in the UK on Channel 4, and in the USA on the Military Channel, travel channel in 2006-2007. In 2008, it was repeated in the UK on the History Channel.
Born Survivor / Man vs. Wild / Ultimate Survival
Grylls hosts a documentary series titled Born Survivor: Bear Grylls for the British Channel 4, known in the U.S. on Discovery Channel as Man vs. Wild. This series is titled Ultimate Survival for Discovery Channel in Europe, Asia, and Africa.
The series features Grylls being dropped into some of the most inhospitable places on earth, and showing viewers how to survive. The first series part two premiered in the US on 15 June 2007, the second series part one in Nov 2007, the second series part two in May 2008 and the third series part one in August 2008.
Some of his stunts include climbing sheer cliffs, wading rapids, and even wrapping his urine-soaked t-shirt around his head to help stave off the desert heat.
Grylls has eaten snake (one made him sick), worm, scorpion, porcupine, squirrel, alligator, skunk, camel, zebra, rabbit, lizards, turtle, raw fish, sheep’s eyeballs, goat’s testicles (a Berber delicacy), a tree frog, spider, raw yak liver, termites and grubs. In one episode he dipped a sheep’s eye in a geothermal vent with his shoe laces in order to cook it.
He has also rubbed snow on his body to dry off after jumping into an icy lake, squeezed both elephant dung and partially digested food from the stomach of a dead camel into his mouth for water, ripped raw chunks of meat off a dead zebra with his teeth, eaten maggots off a dead deer, and drank his own urine which had been stored in the skin of a dead snake. Intermittently, Grylls also regales the viewer with tales of other adventurers stranded and/or killed in the wilderness.
In December 2008, Grylls suffered a broken shoulder when he fell off a cliff in the Antarctic while filming an episode of his show. It was severe enough to require air-evacuation to South Africa for treatment. On December 7th 2008, Discovery Channel stated that Grylls did not injure himself during a taping of his Man vs Wild show but instead, was injured while on an independant expedition.
For more information check my post on Man vs Wild : https://shishircyb.wordpress.com/2008/12/09/man-vs-wild/

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BOOKS
Grylls’ first book, titled Facing Up, went into the UK top 10 best-seller list, and was launched in the USA entitled The Kid Who Climbed Everest. Its subject is his expedition, at 23 years old, to climb to the summit of Mount Everest. The book details the climb, from his first reconnaissance climb on which he fell in a crevasse and was knocked unconscious, regaining consciousness to find himself swinging on the end of a rope, to the grueling ascent that took him over ninety days of extreme weather, sleep deprivation and almost running out of oxygen inside the death zone. Another book was written in 2002 that gave survival skills on how to survive life in the suburbs with dangerous gangs. He describes defense techniques that one could use in a dangerous situation.
Grylls’ second book Facing the Frozen Ocean was shortlisted for the William Hill Sports Book of the Year Award 2004, it describes how, with a team of five men, he completed the first unassisted crossing of the frozen North Atlantic, Arctic Ocean in a rigid inflatable boat (RIB). He was awarded an Honorary commission in the Royal Navy, as a Lieutenant-Commander for this feat.
A book was also written to accompany the series Born Survivor: Bear Grylls. It was published under the same title as the television series, featuring survival skills learned from some of the world’s most hostile places. This book reached the Sunday Times Top 10 best-seller list.
In April 2008, Grylls published an accompanying book to the Man vs. Wild Discovery television show. The book is filled with survival tips from the TV show.
He has a series of children’s adventure survival books out titled: ‘Mission Survival: Gold of the Gods’, and ‘Mission Survival: Way of the Wolf’.
His latest book is an extreme guide to outdoor pursuits, titled: ‘Bear Grylls’ book of Great Outdoor Adventures.’

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FEATS AND RECORD ATTEMPTS
Grylls has been involved in several solo, and team based feats, and attempts for charity or record breaking.

By land

  • Ama Dablam
    Grylls first entered the record books in 1997 by being the youngest Briton to summit Ama Dablam in the Himalayas with his good friend Colm Keaveney, a peak famously described by Sir Edmund Hillary as “unclimbable”.
  • Everest
    In 1998, Grylls achieved a Guinness World Record as the youngest Briton, at 23, to summit Mount Everest. However, James Allen, an Australian/British climber who ascended Everest in 1995 with an Australian team, but who has dual citizenship, beat him to the summit at age 22. Since then, British climber Rhys Jones reached the summit on his 20th birthday in May 2006.
    In an interview with David Letterman (June 2007), Letterman calls him “the youngest Briton to summit Everest” and Bear corrects him by saying another man, Michael Matthews, did it the following year but died on the way down, and regardless of his death, it has become this man’s record.

By sea

  • Circumnavigation of the UK
    In 2000, Grylls, with his friend Neil Laughton, was among the first team to circumnavigate the UK on a personal watercraft or jet ski, to raise money for the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI).
  • Crossing the North Atlantic
    Three years later, he led a team of five British men on the first unassisted crossing of the north Atlantic Arctic Ocean, in an open rigid inflatable boat. The team battled giant waves, polar bears, icebergs and storms.

By Air

  • Paramotoring over Angel Falls
    In 2005, Grylls led the first team ever to attempt to paramotor over the remote jungle plateau of the Angel Falls in Venezuela. The team was attempting to reach the highest, most remote high tepuis, made famous by Conan Doyle’s Lost World.
  • Dinner party at altitude
    In 2005, alongside balloonist and mountaineer David Hempleman-Adams and Lieutenant Commander Alan Veal, leader of the Royal Navy Freefall Parachute Display Team, Bear Grylls created a world record for the highest ever open-air formal dinner party, which they did under a hot air balloon at 25,000 feet, dressed in full Mess dress and oxygen masks. To train for the event, Bear made over 200 parachute jumps. This was in aid of the The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award and The Prince’s Trust.
  • Paramotoring over the Himalayas
    In 2007, Grylls claimed to have broken a new world record by flying a paramotor over the Himalayas, higher than Mount Everest (original claim, “over Mount Everest”,and after being challenged, “above Everest” on his website).
    His report of the flight described coping with temperatures of -60 °C and dangerously low oxygen levels to reach 29,500 feet, almost 10,000 feet higher than the previous record of 20,019 feet.The expedition raised over $2 million for children’s charities worldwide including Global Angels. Grylls described the expedition, filmed for Discovery Channel worldwide as well as Channel 4 in the UK, as “the hairiest, most frightening thing” he had ever done.
    While Grylls initially claimed that the flight was over Everest itself, the permit was only to fly to the south of Everest, and he did not approach Everest itself out of risk of violating Chinese airspace.
    The pair took off from 14,500 feet, 8 miles south of the mountain. Grylls says he got within two miles of the famous peak during his ascent. From there, the mission website reports him “riding the wind into the record books”.
    “There are various formalities and rules. You need a proper flight recorder trace, an FAI license, you’ve got to take off from flat ground – you can’t just take off from the side of a hill. You need to have a flight observer. If you don’t, it’s not a record” he added, “It’s the responsibility of anybody who does anything ground-breaking to prove what they have done.” He said that even if the instrument displays froze mid-flight, as Grylls wrote afterwards, it doesn’t mean they stopped recording. “It may well be they’ve got a trace.”
Bear Grylls eating a snake

Bear Grylls eating a snake

REFRENCES

1. wikipedia.com

Comments
  1. Bruce McIntire says:

    Just wanted to say HI. I found your blog a few days ago on Technorati and have been reading it over the past few days.

  2. Shishir Gupta says:

    Hi Bruce ,

    Thats good and thank you for replying. It will good if you can give me your feedback on my blog

    -S

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  5. educlaytion says:

    I am with you on the awesomeness of Bear. He makes Chuck Norris look like Betty Crocker. I’ve been writing about him too. Great stuff you have here.

  6. Shishir Gupta says:

    Thank you for your appreciation. And yes i do agree with you he is really awesome.

    -S

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