On their trek, the team – supplemented by local guides, camp hands, cooks, six Bactrian camels and five Mongolian ponies – met a fabled Kazakh ‘Eagle Hunter’ named Shohan, and his family. There’s are the happy faces you see posing with their newly-acquired Fortnum’s hamper.
'Shohan and his family are nomads and meeting them was an undoubted highlight – I would say that one of the most wonderful things about these sort of adventures is that they give you the opportunity to form friendships, however fleeting, with different peoples and cultures, and that was certainly the case here. The family were all unbelievably warm, welcoming, curious and hospitable.'
So hospitable, that when it came time to leave, Shohan’s five-year-old daughter was left a little gift, in the shape of a Fortnum’s hamper.
'When we packed the hamper, our aim was to fill it with small treats to raise our morale after a long day’s trek. There were salamis and other cured meats, cheese, foie gras, nuts and berries, chocolate, Gentleman’s Relish, some wine, some brandy and some excellent Scottish Malt Whisky.
'When we gave the hamper to Shohan’s daughter, we made sure there was still a lot of chocolate inside.
'When she saw that, her smile was immense, and it’s that kind of moment which made this such a hugely successful adventure – we made those sort of fantastic memories, achieved something, learned plenty and each returned home hungry for even more adventure next year.