Sophie’s Wild Life: Using adventure to share stories about nature

Tuesday 14th August 2018

Sophie Pavelle walking the Cornish coastpath by Jack Johns

Sophie Pavelle, a wildlife presenter, and adventurer is the latest to feature in Cornwall Wildlife Trust’s successful My Wild Life campaign on the anniversary of her epic 300-mile walk of Cornwall’s coast paths.

As well as raising the funds for the Trust Sophie connected daily online with hundreds of people through social media, raising awareness of environmental issues and the importance of the work Cornwall Wildlife Trust does to protect Cornwall’s wildlife and wild places.

My Wild Life aims to raise the public’s awareness of the importance of their natural environment, and features local people talking about what nature means to them. The campaign was initially launched nationally by Sir David Attenborough and over the last few years in Cornwall has seen many local personalities share their wild lives and what connecting with nature means to them.

Sophie Pavelle returned to West Pentire Head, owned by the National Trust and a memorable part of her 300-mile route, for her photo shoot for the campaign with Cornish photographer Jack Johns at the start of July.

She made the solo trek, christened “Sophie’s Wild Cornwall” when she was a 22-year-old student studying towards an MSc in Science Communication with a passion for adventure in the outdoors and a love of wildlife.

Sophie was also on a mission to see if she could use social media to re-connect and inspire people online to care about their local environments, by creating daily vlogs of the extraordinary landscapes and wildlife she encountered. Using only her iPhone she filmed, produced and edited a video each day, as well as completed the gruelling mileage, all available to see online.

Sophie says,

“Ever since I can remember, I have always been drawn to nature. My Zoology degree fed my hunger for knowledge, but as I started my masters in Science Communication I wanted to push myself and explore how I could combine my love of adventure and wildlife conservation in an increasingly online world. And so ‘Sophie’s Wild Cornwall’ was born – a huge personal challenge, and a chance to share my passion for taking care of the environment.”

“I relished the opportunity of hiking for 22 days, exploring Cornwall’s rugged coastline and immense biodiversity. I love how nature doesn’t care what you look like or where you come from, it simply rewards your efforts; an incredible view at the top, a gannet commanding the swell below, a spectacular sunset all to yourself. I seek nature to learn about our planet and try to understand our place in its future, but also to find solace and adjust my perspective”.

Her decision to raise money for the Trust came as she explained,

“I am inspired by the Trust’s dedication to protecting and nurturing our wild spaces, which ultimately enables all of us to play a part in conserving its future”.

Sophie continues to use her adventures to share important and inspiring stories about wildlife and environmental issues and has recently been asked to contribute to BBC Springwatch and The Wildlife Trusts nationally. Follow Sophie on Instagram @sophiepavs and learn more about the Trust and My Wild Life at www.cornwallwildlifetrust.org.uk