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The Herald – Caledonian Canal SUP

October 2014

Blind Man’s Leap Of Faith Onto The Water

The Herald – 15th October, 2014.

A DAREDEVIL has become the first blind person in the world to stand-up paddle board the length of the Caledonian Canal.
Dean Dunbar, 45, is registered blind and needs a guide dog to get around but he has overcome his disabilities by becoming the first blind person in the world to complete the feat.
Not happy with over 15 world firsts already credited to his name, Mr Dunbar, from Edinburgh, managed to navigate his way through over 60 miles of water to add yet another title.
Although visually impaired since age nine, his eyesight began to rapidly deteriorate at 27, forcing him to change jobs and ending some of his favourite sports.
But he took part in extreme sports to show what blind and visually impaired people are capable of.
He has racked up a tally of world firsts, he was the first blind person in the world to be shot from a human catapult, and first in the world to swim the UK’s highest loch, Loch Etchachan.
He fought from Fort William against winds of over 45mph to reach Inverness. Guided only by the voices of his two friends, Carl Sawyer, 42, and Jason Sawyer, 46, Dean spent 15 and a half hours on the water over three days.
“I thought: ‘yes I’m scared and yes I’m nervous but I’m with two friends that I can trust with my life’,” he said.


These sponsors have been a tremendous help in supplying kit and support for my challenges.