The Big 5 Challenge - Reeks District Ireland

Uncategorized Jul 24, 2019

When someone says "The Big 5", what springs to your mind? For me, it was Africa. Lions, rhinos, open savanna and hazy red sunsets. That illusion was shattered within all of 5 seconds as I read to the end of the sentence. Ireland: the land of green and blue, sea and mountains. Followed shortly by "There is no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing".

The challenge was simple, at least on paper. Go to the Reeks District of Ireland. Complete the Big 5: five outdoor challenges featuring the...

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The Myth of #outsideisfree: Recognising Outdoor Privilege 

privilege Jul 16, 2019

Although I hold up my calloused climber hands and confess that I often use the hashtag #outsideisfree on my Instagram pictures, more and more I’m learning that this couldn’t be further from reality. Living in the UK, the outdoors is never too far away. Mountain biking in National Trust forests, #wildswimming on Britain’s 12 000 km of coastline, or climbing in quarries of years gone by is never far out of range. As a student myself in a relatively large city (Bristol), I have...

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7 Marathons, 6 Days and a Whole Lot of Litter

If you’d suggested a ‘plogging’ session to me just over a year ago I would have looked at you rather suspiciously. It wasn’t until I found out that it combined two of my passions of fitness and looking after the environment that I realised how perfect it was. Plogging originated in Sweden and roughly translates to picking up rubbish whilst jogging at the same time!

Myself and my good friend, Dermot, decided to run a plog in London and were blown away with not only the...

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A Midsummer Night Dreaming: A Solstice Microadventure

It was the 21st June. I was pottering around my study, trying to finish up some writing for a contract and I was feeling quite cooped up. I hadn’t been on a ‘proper ride’ on my bicycle since I stepped off it at John O’Groats over a month previously.

“Sod this,” I thought, closing the lid of my laptop. I didn’t have any plans for the evening, and the longest day of the year looked like it was going to be a cracker: shame to waste it.

I’d had in...

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A Wild Week on the Water: Sea Kayaking Near Glasgow, Scotland

kayaking scotland Jun 22, 2019

The city gradually falls away, buildings dwindle and the hills dominate the landscape. Then the water, the Clyde, Loch Thom, the sea; dolphins, porpoise, golden eagles. Gannets dive at 70 mph and curious seals peak over the waves. The Secret Coast of Scotland is just two hours from Glasgow.

If you want to experience life from a different perspective, take to a sea kayak. These specialist boats are designed for speed on long journeys with plenty of space for camping kit. How else can you scour...

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From Fear to Fearsome: Jo Bradshaw Attempts the Seven Summits

Jo on the summit of Denali.

Who?

Jo Bradshaw is a 48-years-young former no-saying, height-hating, risk-averse sofa surfer who has gradually turned fear into fearsome. Having started her working life with horses, in her mid 20s she moved into retail and gradually worked her way up the management ladder in various industries, finally becoming a Business Advisor for Business Link in Buckinghamshire.

A kick up the backside by a good friend resulted in a charity bike ride in 2004, which, in...

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These Women Can: Female Success in the Iconic Devizes to Westminster Canoe Race

Danielle Sellwood and Guy Dresser speak to competitors in the ultra-distance, Devizes to Westminster canoe race, which this year saw unprecedented success by women.

Women weren’t allowed to run marathons for years. Infamous Youtube footage shows an official trying to stop American runner Katherine Switzer from completing the 1967 Boston marathon. Yet it was a British woman, Jasmin Paris, who ran away from all the men in the 268-mile Montane Spine race earlier this year, sparking much...

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Marion Shoote: Sunburnt rock and desiccated peaks – bikepacking the Pamir Highway

For me, bikepacking is about being able to explore those remote corners of the world that are otherwise hard to travel through at the right pace. Self-sufficiency is key: pack up your bike with your tent, food and some spare layers, and head off into your chosen slice of wilderness to see what the day will bring. You never quite know what is going to happen each day: what you're going to see, who you're going to encounter or where you're going to sleep that night. If my trips over the years...

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Rosie Watson: Failing to run the length of the Pyrenees, via the Haute Route

failure pyrenees running Apr 11, 2019

May 2018; I was inside, revising, again. Attempting to cram another 100+ pages of notes, which I had only just caught up on yesterday, into my brain in less than 48 hrs, well enough that I could survive yet another final year exam. “It’s OK”, I told myself, “in a few weeks time you’ll be on a trip of a lifetime, for a whole month! It will be paradise!”. 

The Haute Route is the highest and toughest of the trails which follow the Pyreneean mountains on...

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Eve Jones: Five climbing films you NEED to watch

climbing film review Mar 26, 2019

Outdoor climbing and mountainous adventures lend themselves to the film form due to both their naturally stunning scenery and the intensely personal nature of long-term climbing projects. More than this, these films form an exciting part of climbing culture. In a tight, uncompetitive community, watching the big names of climbing take on cutting edge ascents has a unifying effect; we all know some of the internal conflicts they’re experiencing, we all appreciate the incredible...

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