Bridget Kruger: Adventures of a Wild Child

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Ever since Bridget was a kid she has been known as a bit of wild child, earning the nickname of ‘Crusher’ from an early age. She grew up wild and free in the Australian Outback and has since spread her wings to far more distant places. For the last ten years she has been wandering the globe working, living and traveling in some of the most remote regions on the planet. She is probably one of the few people you will ever meet who has been bitten by a lion and who has had their skull crushed by a dogsled. The latter accident changed her life. It was one of the biggest struggles she has ever faced: gaining back her ability to balance, to see without migraines and to be able to stay awake long enough to live a little each day. It was a massive wake-up call for her to appreciate every moving muscle she had and the ability to even think because it can all go in a flash. She believes it really taught her to try and grab the most from life and to help others to do it as well.

After having studied a combination of psychology and adventure, she is now an adventure therapist and specializes in expedition programs. Life has been a crazy journey so far, having experienced some huge highs and huge lows. She would love to share some of her personal learning and healing with others to help them take ownership over their own lives and empower them to make the healthiest lifestyle choices for themselves.

We just love your adventures from your account, Adventures of a Wild Child. What inspired you to share your adventures? What are your goals by telling your stories and sharing your photographs?

I recently got a real job… what do I mean by that??? Normally I live in a tent for close to ten months of the year and travel and work in multiple countries but I decided to come home for a little refresher, have a set of drawers, put things away in a non-backpack kind of situation. Naturally my friends and family all have bets on how long it will last; I already know the answer myself. Anyways, instead of being in the middle of nowhere cut off from most means of communication, I actually have time to start putting the stories of my last ten years together. My twenties have been a wild ride of amazing experiences and encounters of some of the craziest situations. In fact I didn’t realize how different my life was until I have had to try and make small talk all of a sudden. It is important to me to start sharing these things because I want to inspire people to have the courage to live differently and do the things that give them passion. I really want to show girls in particular that you can do anything, and be beautiful while doing it.

Where do you currently live? What are some of your favorite local spots for adventure?

I currently live in North Queensland, Australia. It isn’t somewhere I thought I would ever end up but life puts us in funny situations sometimes. I can’t say I will be here forever… but there are some incredible spots around to work and play in. The sea kayaking and free diving in this area of Australia is unreal (especially on the Great Barrier Reef). And there are amazing rainforests and almost entire environments that glow from weird bacteria at night time. The scenery here is wildly different: every fifty kilometers and it just doesn’t cease to be interesting. I am stoked to have a winter season to explore it! (Summer here is brutally hot.)

What are some of your favorite adventure spots from your travels?

Adventure I think can be had anywhere, you just have to create it. Whether it is an adventure of the mind, soul or the emotional or physical body, it does not matter much to me. Adventure is an integral part of my life but to answer your question in a different manner… my favourite, most stand-out soul engrossing experiences can be put down to three places. Africa is probably my favourite continent to travel to. There is something amazing about the people, the culture and the experiences that I have there every time. I can never get enough of it; it is just such a beautiful place and each time I work and travel there, my story is completely different! It is a place that gets ingrained in the soul and I always feel spiritually nourished after being there. My thought processes always get affected in the best ways when there. I think the most culturally shocking place I have been to is Mongolia. Mongolia was like being in New York in the cities, the fashion is just such high quality yet you retreat into the country side and it is like having gone back five hundred years. The people are incredibly talented at life and live in such beauty. I wish I was bought up as a Mongolian… do you know in their national horse race the oldest jockies to race are eight years old. I saw one jocky who wasn’t able to walk properly yet was hoisted up onto their families horse to race. That is an insane amount of pressure for a three year old. Any people that tame eagles and are descended from Genghis Khan are definitely set to be pretty special. And I guess the final spot that has made the most impact on me was when I lived on Svalbard. Google it, it is a little island up by the north pole. The place has such striking beauty that I haven’t encountered anywhere else and you can literally ski off your doorstep into the most serene untouched wilderness. There are polar bears and more reindeer than people and your brain starts to pick out the tiniest bits of colour and really appreciate them because most of the time the environment is different shades of blacks and whites. There is almost a month where the sunsets and sunrises almost run into each other and the beauty that is displayed is absolutely mesmerizing.

How many countries have you been to so far? What have been your favorites, and why?

I don’t know the exact number but I do know it is over 70 different countries. Every so often I have to fill out a visa application that asks me to list all the countries I have visited in the last ten years… my smart friends started a excel sheet detailing their list to make this job easier…. I have never unfortunately been such an organized forward thinker. Future Bridget has to deal with a lot of past Bridget’s stupidity. I work as an adventure expedition guide and adventure therapist so it isn’t unusual for me to visit over 35 countries a year.

What is it about travel and adventure that appeals to you most?

I don’t like travel or adventure when it is jumping from place to place just to tick off a list. To me it is all about the experiences you have and being free and flexible to let those things happen to you. I think the most amazing thing that travel and adventure can give to you is the learning and the ability to have an open mind. You encounter people with such different ways of thinking that it just broadens the way in which you see the world. Every place I have ever been has taught me something, every person I have met has given me something too, it is just about looking for those little gifts and appreciating them.

What are some of the most memorable stories from your adventures?

You will have to read my blog for those! I tend to get into some pretty ridiculous scenarios at times.

What are your ultimate travel and adventure “bucket list” places and activities?

I want to get into more sustainable adventure travel from now on. I don’t have countries or things that I particularly want to go to but rather big dream trips. Through my degree and Masters, a lot of the classes were based around environmental sustainability and how humans interact with the natural environment. I read a story that inspired me about a man who cycled all the way to Everest from Scandinavia to climb it and then cycle all the way home. He rode with all of his gear on a trailer behind him and carried all of his oxygen bottles out. He specifically said that cycling was more of an adventure than summiting. I think some adventures are used by people as a conversation piece at dinner tables and are more for the ego than the journey itself. This story made me think a lot about how I adventure and travel and inspired me to dream up even bigger trips that are not just environmentally sustainable but also give back to communities and the environment and educate along the way. A lot of the trips I have planned for the next few years will not only be raising awareness for the environment but also for living in a more holistic way.

We at This Adventure Life want our readers to live life fearlessly in the pursuit of living their ideal life. What would your advice be for someone who wants to live fearlessly and pursue their wildest dreams?

One of my favourite quotes is ‘Live, don’t just exist’.  We are the only ones who put up barriers against what is possible, so stop hiding behind excuses and just do it. Nobody wants to be that guy who gets to their eighties and realises that they have never truly lived because they were too scared to take that step to make it happen. Everyone’s level of adventure is different, everyone’s ideal life is different but our life story is something we write, we can’t always choose the events that happen to us but we can always choose the reaction to it.

Where is your next adventure?

It is difficult to say what my next adventure will be. Every weekend I am off doing micro adventures around my area but I guess my next big journey is going to be a human powered adventure expedition across New Zealand with a team of amazing women. Along the way we will be reaching out to different communities to empower other women to reach their full potential and achieve a sense of balanced and happy lifestyle.

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Follow her on Instagram: @adventuresofawildchild

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