HIKE: Thorpe Cloud and Dovedale Walk, The Peak District, UK

I just got back from a jaunt up to The Peak District. I have not been before so thought a little teaser trip would be just enough on this Bank Holiday. It is all part of my desire to see more of the UK as there is so much beauty in this country I have not yet discovered and I want to see as much as I can. My Dad and I decided to take on Thorpe Cloud and walk the Dovedale trail which is all located at the southern tip of the District. Being one of my Mum’s favourite walks I jumped at the chance to retrace her steps. This was an easy going hike, the Dovedale trail is lovely and peaceful especially if you get there early enough to beat the crowds. I suggest a set off time of about 7am-9am if you want to grab a parking space without any trouble (£3 per car) and enjoy the trail at its quietest. As for Thorpe Cloud, I’ve certainly done bigger peaks, however at an elevation of 287m you should expect a modest climb and you will be rewarded with some great views over the lusciously green landscape below. Be prepared for a breeze at the summit! It will not be my last trip to the Peaks, there is something quite refreshing about the loss of phone signal and having nothing but nature and your own thoughts as company out in the beautiful countryside. There is no shortage of quaint little pubs at the base to relax with a pint and/or lunch afterwards. I saw a fair amount of children and dogs enjoying the walk and climb so its a child and dog friendly trail and a great day out whether you are alone, with a companion or the family. Give it a go! Below is my favourite photo from the trip:

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HIKE: The Old Man of Coniston, Cumbria, UK

The weekend just gone I was up in The Lake District and decided to challenge myself with a hike. I have hiked a few times in the past in a more unfit state therefore I thought I would test myself with The Old Man of Coniston which elevates to 803m. This was my first trip up to Cumbria and I absolutely fell in love with the lakes and I was not prepared for the stunning scenery. The hike itself surprised me, firstly I took a wrong turn and headed up to Levers Water which lengthened the route, however it was a nice surprise to stumble upon none the less. After getting back on course I was up at the summit in no time. I was surprised at how well I coped and if anything its spurred me on to seek out bigger and better hikes back at the Lake District and around the UK. The hike took about 5 and 1/2 hours to get up and down which includes the wrong turn. I totally recommend it to test your fitness levels, and also to soak up the atmosphere and spectacular views the higher you climb. Bring some energy bars and plenty of water. Below is my favourite photo from the trip:

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