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Jamie & Khobe Clarke

Jamie & Khobe Clarke

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A father and son adventure — and extreme digital detox

Canadians are spending an average of three hours per day on their smartphones1. In Scotland, doctors are actually prescribing nature to patients, and around the world, the concept of “forest bathing” is gaining monumental interest. After summiting Mount Everest twice, scaling the world’s Seven Summits and crossing Arabia’s Empty Quarter by camel, Calgarian Jamie Clarke knows a thing or two about the benefits of time spent in the outdoors. 

Like many parents, Clarke became concerned about the addictive relationship his teenagers have formed with their smartphones. As their connection to their phones grew, Clarke found them opting out of outdoor adventures, simply because they didn’t want to be disconnected from their Wifi. “My kids were starting to avoid going out for real life adventures for fear of missing out on what was happening on their phones. The realization that I fed this by giving them access to smartphones from day one weighs on me heavily,” he says. 

His son Khobe (18 years old), is aware of how much he and so many other teens struggle with feeling like they always need to connect, and agrees that this kind of technological addiction is a real issue. 

On July 28, Jamie and Khobe Clarke will set out on an adventure to motorbike across Mongolia - (what some may call “an Instagrammable trip of a lifetime”) - but will disconnect from their devices in the hopes of re-connecting with the wilds of the planet and with each other. How will their perceptions and relationships with technology (and each other) change as they venture across desolate landscapes in one of the most sparsely populated and traditional regions of the world?

1Source: eMarketer (March 2018)