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Category: Outdoors

Be Adventure Smart This Bank Holiday Weekend

Be Adventure Smart This Bank Holiday Weekend

Are you adventure smart? It’s bank holiday weekend. The perfect opportunity for many of us to head to the hills. The weather’s turning out to be half decent too! On a recent walk around Lake Windermere, I endured some more typical bank holiday weather conditions. It chucked it down all day. I saw no other walkers; I was the only mug stupid enough to brave the conditions. And I bloody loved it. As long as you are adventure smart, there’s…

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Family Camping – Creating a Checklist

Family Camping – Creating a Checklist

CLICK TO ACCESS THE FAMILY CAMPING CHECKLIST GUIDE I’m feeling pretty smug. It’s taken some gentle persuasion but my family now has the camping bug. This is the holy grail for many an everyday adventurer. Getting the family on board means you’ll be spending much more time outside. Every spare weekend becomes an excuse to get some fresh air. Not to mention the benefits for the kids – connecting with nature, being free range, inspiring a sense of wonder plus…

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Introduction to Family Camping

Introduction to Family Camping

Barely a month has passed since “Operation Get The Family Into Camping” began. In that time, I’ve gone from sneaking in quick trips to the mountains on my own whenever I can (and feeling guilty for leaving the family behind) to having the troops practically begging to take the tent out every weekend. It’s the dream for every working parent craving more outdoors time. The kids love it. My wife wasn’t cold. And we now spend our evenings planning the…

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Family Camping

Family Camping

Today’s a big day in the Highs and Lows house. I’m expecting a large delivery from Winfields Outdoors which marks the first phase of transitioning from solo-and-slightly-smelly wild camper to master-of-the-campsite family camper. Wild camping was always my thing. Sleeping out amongst the fells when everyone else has gone home is a wonderful feeling. Waking up at the crack of dawn with only the mountains for company is a real privilege. Starting a proper job put a stop to this….

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Father’s Day – Adventures With Kids

Father’s Day – Adventures With Kids

Being a dad is the greatest adventure on earth. It’s not unlike climbing a mountain. It requires stamina, patience and ingenuity, not to mention a touch of luck to avoid stormy weather. It takes a lot of effort but the rewards for being shattered at the end of each day are huge. Any dad who loves the outdoors naturally wants his children to share his enthusiasm. Who wouldn’t want a miniature walking buddy pestering them to get outside at every…

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Meeting Your Mountain Heroes: Sharp Edge

Meeting Your Mountain Heroes: Sharp Edge

Blencathra is a lovely thing. Standing proudly in the North of the Lake District, it’s the first mountain to greet visitors approaching from the east and the last to bid them farewell. It tells you much about the mood of the mountains that day: clear skies above Blencathra, you are in for a treat; angry looking clouds on the summit, prepare to get wet. It’s a proper mountain, as popular with those seeking an introduction to hill-walking as it is…

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Senses: Sounds

Senses: Sounds

As I write this, the usual soundtrack of keys tap-tap-tapping is not alone. It’s a mechanical intrusion on the nearby waterfall, the soft scurrying of a cheeky squirrel, the honking of geese and the evening chorus of birdsong settling down for the night. I can hear the breeze rustling the leaves on the trees. A moorhen chirps. There’s a whisper among the leaves – perhaps the hedgehog which came to visit the other night – and then splashing as some…

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Meeting Your Mountain Heroes: Striding Edge

Meeting Your Mountain Heroes: Striding Edge

Striding Edge, Helvellyn. Seeing a photograph of this iconic ridge in the Lake District as a young boy pinpoints the exact moment which sparked my interested in mountains. I remember being dragged on a walk on a family holiday, when my dad told the tale of a ridge, high up in the clouds, where the path is only three feet wide, sheer drops into oblivion either side of you. I didn’t believe him, of course, my only experiences of Lake…

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Meeting Your Mountain Heroes

Meeting Your Mountain Heroes

They say you shouldn’t meet your heroes, as they are sure to disappoint you. Particularly in these days of social media, where people portray images of themselves which are so far removed from reality, we have unrealistic expectations of their apparently perfect lives. But what if your heroes aren’t people? What about your mountain heroes? As a child, I was fascinated by mountains and some grabbed my attention more than others. I would spend hours looking at my dad’s old…

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Senses: Smell

Senses: Smell

On a recent family break to the Scottish coast, I overheard a lady taking a deep breath before smiling and saying to her teenage children, “I love that smell”. There was such feeling in those four words. It was a beautifully clear day. A gentle breeze wafting the aroma of the sea into her nostrils. No doubt evoking memories of childhood holidays, paddling in the sea, ice cream dripping down the sides of a cone, seagulls screaming overhead… of life…

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