Tarka was born into an adventurous family. His uncle William King was the oldest participant in the first solo non-stop around the world yacht race, the Sunday Times Golden Globe Race, and is the oldest surviving World War II submarine commander.
Living in the French Alps Tarka became an accomplished skier by the age of 2 and from an early age developed a passion for the mountains. This exceptional playground, in addition to skiing, allowed him to discover the joys of climbing and from there his adventurous spirit proliferated into ice climbing, mountaineering, ski touring, telemarking, cross country skiing, mountain biking, road cycling, paragliding, skydiving and BASE jumping to name a few.
At the age of 16, along with a great friend, Tarka took a bicycle out of a skip, put it back together in the school design labs and began a 1000km journey to the South of France. Although the journey was a logistical disaster, it was his first self organised expedition and added exponentially to his love of challenging sports and wild environments.
At this time he was also taking off as a rugby player with prospects of playing at top level. After finishing school he studied Industrial Product Design at the University of Brunel and played a season of rugby for the London Wasps, he then transferred to Bath Rugby Club and Bath University where he studied Sports Technology. Despite a promising career in professional rugby, he gave it up to follow his dream.
Since this point, Tarka has made it his life ambition to perpetually challenge himself, to discover how resilient, resourceful, determined and flexible he can be, in a bid to expand the achievement and understanding of humanity and of our planet through the world of expeditions.
With nearly 30 expeditions to date, he has notched up several summits of Mt Blanc as well as Acacongua, Cerro Plomo, Leonera, Tipungato and Choy Oya. His polar travels have seen multiple expeditions to Svalbard, Alaska and Siberia, and as an experiment in human endurance; with minimal training he ran 8 marathons in 8 consecutive days down the west coast of France carrying all his equipment. Some of his more recent expeditions include:
In 2005 he became the second person in history to attempt to trek to both the North and South Poles solo and consecutively. At 24 years old he was the youngest person ever to attempt this expedition. Sadly the expedition ran into financial difficulties before the Poles could be reached.
In 2006, as part of the EverestMax expedition, he set out to join an elite group and summit the world’s highest mountain on earth without oxygen. During this expedition, at more than 7km above sea level on the highest and most inhospitable mountain on earth, Mt Everest, he developed High Altitude Cerebral Edema (HACE).
In 2007 Tarka, along with Katie-Jane completed the first ever, continual unsupported trek along the Great Wall of China. Walking 4500km through the Taklahama desert and the Qiling Mountains with temperatures varying from +40°C to -35°C.
In 2008 he embarked on an 8000km cycle through Africa on a 30 year old heavy steel bicycle with no brakes or gears, to develop his new found passion of film making.
Early this year he spent 2 months working on the Arctic Ocean as part of the Catlin Arctic Survey. Whilst floating around on an ice block, sat in tent at -45°C, he had plenty of time to think, and Rivers of Ice was born.