As these autumnal days begin to feel colder and fresher, and nights draw out longer and darker, I find myself looking back over summers adventures, doing my damnedest to stave off that slow feeling of hibernation winter brings.
Whilst it’s been a strange kind of year for all, I hope you’ve managed to make the most of spring and summer that was, generally, decent weather. Even we were locked-down for some of it. With that in mind, welcome to part 2 of ‘Adventure is good for the soul.’
This weeks post is about getting out in nature, hiking. Perhaps nothing new for a lot of people, but I didn’t start enjoying hiking (and being out in nature generally), until I was into my late twenties. Anyway, that was a loooong time ago.
Personally, I find hiking, and walking in general, meditative. Add in rolling hills, a coastal path, a mountain peak, a few local pubs, or just a sense of being out in the elements, and you’re onto a winner.
This year I revisted a few well-known spots, discovered new delights and, more recently, embraced the foraging mindset. (More on sloe gin, blackberry whiskey, damson vodka and rose-hip brandy later.)
I also remembered to take seasonal photos. I’m enjoying looking back at bluebells in the spring; the flowers, sun and fruits of summer, and now crisper autumn days in harvest.
But what’s really good about hiking, is it’s free! All you need is a pair of boots, a jacket, some layers, and a willingness to get out there and explore.
Sure, the weather can be a little dynamic in the UK, but that’s what makes it interesting. Mostly.
And there’s nothing like that feeling of having braved the elements as you sit back at home with a cup of tea, sloe gin, or blackberry whiskey, with an all-over-body-glow that only being out in the elements gives.
All in all, an easy way to get your adventure fix. And you never know where it may take you.
Back in 2007 I’d never even been to the Peak District. And now, I’ve been lucky enough to climb Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, travel through the Himalayas in Nepal, hike some of South Africa, and explore some of the lessor known cantons of Switzerland.
Not that there’s anything wrong with the UK.
In fact, I’d rate climbing some of the routes up Snowdon in North Wales as good as anything else I’ve done. And the Peak district is simply beautiful. As are the Lakes, Scotland, and so many other places closer to home than I ever realised.
All you’ve got to do is go and explore. Why? Because it’s good for the soul.