September 2021 - Adventure Trails & The Nav GuyHow did Adventure Trails start?
Adventure is in my blood!
Growing up orienteering, mountain biking and fell running, I continued my love of outdoor pursuits into adulthood. Then in 2015, I was finally able to pursue my passion for all things outdoor full time. With decades of experience in the mountains, I advise, plan and guide clients safely on their Adventure. I get a real buzz supporting people of all backgrounds and abilities to enjoy the mountains and achieve their personal goals.
I really enjoy delivering navigation training too. I use my social media alter ego - The Nav Guy! I love to help people ger over their map reading wobbles to get out and explore more. I provide skill training for walkers, trail runners and mountain marathon runners.
What do you enjoy most about what you do?
Without a doubt the best thing is meeting so many different people from very different backgrounds. Being in the outdoors brings out the best in everyone, so whether on a navigation course or on a guided walk, you get to meet many fascinating characters and chat in beautiful surroundings. Now more than ever being out in nature is so therapeutic.
What has been your most exciting adventure to date?
I usually head over to the Alps or Pyrenees once a year with a group of friends for a mountain running Skyrace. I've done some fabulous courses over the years, but perhaps my favourite one was in the Italian/Swiss border at Livigno. Whilst we have great mountains in the UK, the Alps are on a different scale. They're so extensive that even after years of visiting I feel as though I have barely scratched the surface.
With more people investing time in the outdoors, what advice would you give?
Get some basic hiking kit sorted sooner rather than later. Don't try and persevere with unsuitable stuff! A reasonable pair of boots/ shoes, waterproofs don't cost much at all these days, and can still last for years. Also, get some basic navigation skills under your belt, the kind that I cover in my 2h Navigation Essentials Online Masterclass. This can really build confidence and you get to see so much more on your adventures. Also, with those basic navigation skills you can use digital devices for navigation more effectively - mix the old with the new!
What suitable 'off the beaten track' areas would you recommend?
I think every corner of Britain has great areas to explore. Folk often don't realise what's right on their doorstep. There's over 140,000 miles of public rights of way in England and Wales, plus the right to roam access land, plus the right to roam pretty much everywhere in Scotland! However two less visited 'gems' which I love are The Galloway Hills and the Forest of Bowland. Most tend to drive straight past these, heading to The Lakes, Dales and The Highlands. Yet Galloway and Bowland have so much to offer.
What is your favourite map?
It has to be any of the HARVEY Ultramaps. They are so practical. You can navigate with an Ultramap using one hand, stash it in your pocket so it is always accessible. Yet it still covers a surprisingly large area with it being printed on both sides on tough lightweight waterproof paper.
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