Rob Hayward
Expedition Lead

Find me on: Instagram / LinkedIn

As one of the co-founders of Outlier Ascents, Rob has a deep passion for the outdoors and adventure. Originally from London and growing up in Buckinghamshire, he couldn’t have been further away from the mountains. But University in South Wales changed all that. Little did he know that those first few wet and cold years exploring the Brecon Beacons and then onto North Wales would ignite a lifelong passion. Since then he’s travelled the world climbing and mountaineering such far flung places as Atlas Mountains, Andes, Himalayas, South East Asia and of course the European Alps.

Outlier Ascents. Rob Hayward, Expedition Lead. From UK climbing tour package
Outlier Ascents. Rob Hayward, Expedition Lead. From UK climbing tour package

Fast forward to today and with a wife and 2 young children living St Albans, he’s still hoping to inspire adventure in others and driving the OutlierAscents team. Rob works closely with Clients supporting them through the programme day to day and running many of the UK mountain training sessions. He also makes regular guest appearances in the Alps and will often shadow teams, helping them to achieve their goals in the mountains.

“Rob was patient and helpful, making sure everything was set up logistically so the trip could run as smoothly as possible.”

Why the mountains?

Inspiration and perspective… Simple as that. A bad day in the mountains will not only instantly ground you in the here and now, regardless of what life in general is throwing at you, it will also leave you with a sense of feeling truly alive. The sheer size and relentless of the mountains and the weather systems around them is truly awe inspiring. A clear day will blow you away emotionally, where as a brutal high wind, wet and cold expedition will test you to the very limits of who you are physically and mentally. It will strip you down to the very core and rebuild you with a strength you didn’t know you had. 

What are the worst things about the mountains?

Being away from the family and being exposed as a creaking over 40 year old on long mountain days and climbs.

What’s your most epic experience to date?

Aside from wife and kids of course, it would have to be summiting my first unguided 6000m peak in the Himalayas, Stok Kangri. Although a straight forward climb, the views, altitude, team and trip to get their were amazing and have stuck with me for life. Never have I laughed so much, made such great friends, been so physically broken, mentally tired and emotionally exhilarated as I have on that trip, even some 15 years on.

What does life outside of Outlier Ascents look like for you?

Mainly wrestling and negotiating with my 2 young kids and every now and again escaping on my motorbike for an hour or so. You’ll also occasionally find me in one of a few St Albans public houses, convincing unsuspecting locals they should climb a mountain!