Perthshire is an absolute haven for anyone who enjoys outdoor activities. With some of the most stunning scenery, lots of fantastic Munros to bag and plenty more fun to be had on the rivers and lochs - it's quite literally an adventurers paradise.
So it makes perfect sense that there's business opportunities here for someone who is crazy about the outdoors and wants to provide safe adventures for like-minded people. That's exactly what Steve Thomas had in mind when he started Freespirits.
The former military man just loves being in the great Perthshire outdoors and just by speaking to him you can feel the enthusiasm he has for getting other people out there with him. He helps people to overcome fears, to build stronger bonds with friends, family and co-workers, and most of all have fun!
We caught up with Steve after a busy day of white water rafting to find out more about what he does and how he likes to spend his spare time.
What does a typical day at work look like for you?
It varies! Some days may begin in the office, taking care of booking requests and ensuring that everything is in place for the activities taking place that day. Other days, it might be jumping straight into the activities, taking customers white water rafting, Canyoning, cliffjumping and all other fun things we cater for!
Everyday is generally finished off with a staff debrief and planning session for the following day, usually at our onsite restaurant and riverside bar at the Inn on the Tay.
What signals the start of your weekend / days off?
Being self employed, days off are few and far between. Should I be fortunate enough to have a day off, it is either spent with family or staff days out on different rivers and canyons, or maybe a day out on Loch Tay in the boat.
What might people be surprised to know about you?
I served for nine years with commando forces, operating in areas as diverse as East Africa, Central America, the Middle East and the Arctic Circle. Scotland is one of the best places in the world to explore. It was from this time in the forces that my passion for the outdoors was initiated, and I've never looked back since. (That and the fact I was born with 6 fingers!!)
Top of your bucket list?
Without a shadow of a doubt, to raft the mighty Zambesi. I've rafted in South Africa before, and a variety of other countries, but never the Zambesi.
Worst job you’ve ever had?
Lorry driving, which, as much as I love driving, was trunking from one place to another every night. Same place, same road, I got to the point where I knew every road sign and bump in the road from Dundee to Carlisle.
Who or what inspires you?
Anyone who gets out there and tries things. Scotland is one of the best places in the world to explore, there is so much to see and do, and the people who get out there and explore inspire me.
Tell us about the weekend you’d love to live again?
Probably my 50th birthday weekend, surrounded by friends, family and had a full weekend of getting them all out white water rafting, abseiling, Canyoning and a wee party thrown in for good measure at The Inn on the Tay.
What’s the best part about your job?
Meeting lots of different people, taking them on activities, seeing them overcome some of their fears and appreciating the feeling of seeing them with a smile on their face, having overcome those fears and gaining a sense of achievement.
What’s in the perfect day off breakfast?
Full Scottish, coffee, orange juice, fruit and porridge, eaten outside at the start of another adventure.
Complete this sentence; The best things in life are…. OUTDOORS!!!!
For more information on the activity Steve and Freespirits offer, visit their website.
Tammy Fleuchar is Club Manager at Fit4Less gym in Perth City Centre, fitness fanatic and loves keeping Perth fit and healthy.
January 9th Thursday 2020
Rehanna MacDonald plays Sinbad the Sailor in Perth Theatre's 2019 Christmas Pantomime Sinbad.
December 20th Friday 2019
SIsters Kathy Gillon and Liz Munro have a background in hospitality and when they saw the Berryfields tearoom they knew it was the business for them.
December 1st Sunday 2019