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A selection of the latest walking news and blog posts.
Bang Pa-In After a few walks in the city I was keen to go somewhere a little quieter for my next outing and so I took the train in the other direction from normal to go to Bang Pa-In, a small village about an hour north of where I live. Predominantly this was so I could visit the Summer Palace there and walk around the grounds.
Dartmoor's underrated lichen Dartmoor hosts an amazingly rich landscape which includes fascinating rocks, trees and wildlife. I recently had a little bit of time waiting at a checkpoint for a team of Ten Tors trainees when I was admiring the absolutely fascinating lichen that covered my cold hard seat.
Grayrigg Pike At Last Thu 15 Nov 2018: I was super-excited to get up this hill despite that most people would probably find it tame, bland and boring. Why? quite a few reasons really… Firstly, although I'd done around four very tame and easy Lake District hills since my hip replacement, this was a much tougher proposition.
Helicopters buzzing around Paranoia almost set in recently as we spent an idyllic afternoon exploring a little corner of Dartmoor being watched over by a helicopter buzzing around overhead. It spent the whole afternoon with us and did feel as if it was following our route on several occasions.
Still Missing the Nifty Ninety Haze from Camp Fire - 11/18. We are still taking a timeout from the Nifty Ninety, but the challenge is not forgotten, and we are explori…
The Great Outdoors January issue The results of the 2018 Great Outdoors Awards feature in the latest issue. They are split into the Readers' Awards and the Gear Awards, which were judged by a panel of five, of which I was one. We had long discussions over this and all the gear was tried out, making for a rigorous process.
The beech trees I have never seen beech trees become so big. The trees form a tunnel which is wonderfully cooling on hot summer days.
Evening Air The evening settled in such a calm way on a late November walk with Blonde Two that it was almost tangible. It had been a still day anyway: so much so that I had commented how still the air was. As the day grew dimpsy I noticed that the air seemed to draw close and definitely feel different.
If you're looking for an outdoor Christmas present…. It's also very lightweight. I've been trying Haglof's… Sony NEX 7 with Sigma 30mm f2.8 lens I've had the Sony NEX 7 for six months now, during which I've taken nearly 3,000 photos,… Sheltering in a bothy after a day of heavy rain on the Southern Upland Way in February.
Teesdale Overnight The knipemobile's little tiff with the X1 Darlington to Tow Law bus last Monday has interfered particularly with Lucky The Dog's outdoor activities, mainly in view of the fact that he's Not Allowed to ride in the huge and sinisterly black minibus that they've given me as a courtesy car.
One Word Wednesday One word but then, being Blonde, we always have a bit more to say… Dartmoor's rivers are often in spate. They are at their finest at this time. Lucy and I would be this happy… …if you chose to VOTE BLONDE in the Go Outdoors. Outdoor Blog of the Year Awards.
Tuesday's Ten - Beautiful Dartmoor river locations Dartmoor is the source of many of Devon's favourite rivers, we have the Dart, the Teign and the Avon, to name only three. Walking along a stretch of river is a satisfying undertaking, especially if you have time to walk a section that shows how that river's nature changes as it flows downstream.
In Search of King Taksin Before I left the UK I was given a book of walks in the city of Bangkok and now I have been here a few months and starting to find my way around the city I thought it was high time that I tried one out. It is called 22 Walks in Bangkok by Kenneth Barrett.
Review - The Rohan Downtown and Islay Coats I have a bit of an issue with coats, that being that I love to buy coats and jackets suited to outdoor activities but am hopeless when it comes to coats for that rare occasion when I am required to look smart. Blonde One always looks smart and, consequently, has a far better distribution of coats than I do.
Winter Returns To The Cairngorms After several weeks of mild weather that quickly swept away the snow of early November the high Cairngorms are white again and the air is crisp and cold.
B2 50 Sleeps for 50 Years - Oct & Nov Progress 2018 is approaching its end in a rather stormy fashion down here in Devon, nothing like going out with a bang! At the beginning of January, I set myself the Get Outside challenge of sleeping outdoors for 50 nights in 2018.
Food on the GR5 trail through the Alps On long-distance walks I like to resupply as I go along. There are many reasons for this. One is that it's the easiest option and doesn't require packing and sending food boxes. Another is that I find it interesting to see what I find and end up eating.
Gurre, a Legendary Place 'If God in heaven will let me have Gurre, then I will let him have Heaven.' Because of this blasphemy, King Valdemar is doomed to ride in Gurre every night. The romance and mystery associated with Gurre is created by many great poets. The inspiration is easy to understand when you have wandered in Gurre and experienced the silence at dusk.
What is Life Attic? LifeAttic is the brand new venture being undertaken by a good friend and colleague. Joan is embarking on what I think is an amazing idea. Recording your own personal biography to be turned, by Joan, into a beautifully designed and written hard-back book seems to me to be a fantastic idea.
Friday's Phrase I am pretty sure that this week's Friday's Phrase is incorrect, but one very windy campervan night in Wales did have Mr B2 and I wondering as the van rocked and I discovered in the middle of the night how fast the wind could funnel underneath it… You can have too much fresh air…
GR5 Through the Alps: The Gear Eight days into my walk through the Alps on the GR5 I wrote a piece for The Great Outdoors about the gear I was using. At that time I'd had blazing sunshine, torrential rain, and four thunderstorms but no frosts and not much in the way of winds.
Meeting With The X1 Darlington to Tow Law Apologies for the slight hiatus in blog posts here - I have done two walks but blogging has been temporarily interrupted by the random meeting between the knipemobile and the Arriva X1 Regular Bus service between Darlington and Tow Law.
Sea Tractor The Burgh Island sea tractor has long been a thing of fascination for me and, I am sure, hundreds of other people who visit Bigbury beach. It provides a novel way of getting over to the tiny island without getting wet feet.
Northwest by Alex Nail: A Magnificent Book The Northwest Highlands is one of my favourite regions. And if it wasn't it would be after seeing this wonderful book of spectacular, beautiful and mouth-watering photographs. This isn't an objective review as I wrote the Foreword to the book, something I feel really honoured Alex Nail asked me to do, so I do have an interest in seeing it praised.
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