Paul Pritchard

Wanaka Time
7.30pm to 10.30pm (doors open and live music from 7.00pm)
Wanaka Session
Session 7
Wanaka Book Session
Book 1
Queenstown Time
Queenstown Session

Paul was a cutting-edge rock climber and mountaineer hailing from the UK. His adventures took him from Wales to the Himalayas, the Karakoram to Patagonia, Baffin Island to the Pamiers and the European Alps.

In February 1998 while climbing a slender sea stack known as The Totem Pole, in Tasmania, he was hit on the head by a TV-sized boulder falling from 25m and suffered a life-changing injury. He spent a year in hospital and his doctors thought that he might never walk or speak again, yet for Paul, this catastrophic brain injury has become a precious gift.

Embracing his personal journey through hemiplegia – which has robbed his right side of movement and continues to play tricks with his speech and memory – Paul continues to pursue an adventurous life climbing Kilimanjaro, caving, sea kayaking, river rafting and, in 2009, lead rock climbing again. In 2016 he finally climbed the Totem Pole, 18 years after his accident.
He is a passionate believer that without the mountains he climbed and, more so, the Totem Pole accident, he would not have learnt some crucial life lessons. The lessons learned in the mountains got him through a harrowing injury and the painfully slow recovery process has engendered a life lived in the moment.