Want to get to know one of the packrafting world’s most ardent — and well-aging — paddlers?
Look no further than New Zealander and avid “packraftineer” Stanley Mulvany, a retired doctor who now stitches together any mission he can as long as it involves taking along his trusty Alpacka packraft.
Nine years ago, Mulvany imported his first Alpacka packrafts to New Zealand. Since then, as with the lightweight rafts he inflates, his expedition tick-off list has blown up as he’s incorporated packrafts into his missions. He’s spent decades exploring the rugged terrain of New Zealand’s Fiordland and South Westland, with most of his routes having virtually no trails or human impact. He is also the first person to complete the now popular Hollyford-Pyke packrafting loop.
Of course, long, hard-suffering journeys are nothing new to Mulvany. Some of his previous packrafting expeditions include trips to Greenland, the Himalaya and the Yukon River. He also completed a mostly solo traverse of New Zealand’s Southern Alps.
At 71 years old, he’s showing no signs of slowing down. Retirement enables him to lie in wait for weather windows to make his move. When Alpacka ambassador Dulkara Martig caught him at his home to interview him for this podcast, he had just returned from yet another packrafting trip in Fiordland, arriving home just before the next weather system struck (note the wind howling in the background of the podcast).
A Quick PL Q&A
Check the podcast to hear all about some of Stanley’s trips. Listen here: https://the-packrafting-podcast.simplecast.com/episodes/stanley-mulvany-epic-journeys-under-the-radar-in-fiordland
Read more about pack rafting in New Zealand here:
Check out Stanley’s personal adventure blog.
More Alpacka News From Paddling Life:
- Mike Horn’s Pole 2 Pole Crossing with Alpacka Packraft
- Alpacka raft and randy newberg team up to unlock public lands
- Gamechangers: Alpacka Raft Creates a New Way to See the World