Turn your Outdoors up to 11 in 2018

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Want to make the most of the outdoors in 2018? Here are a few ideas to make your outdoors experiences in 2018 one to remember.

1 – Take on the Mud and Routes Welsh 25 challenge. Climb the highest 25 mountains in Wales, or at least complete your collection if you’ve bagged most of them already. There may be 25 mountains, but we reckon you’d be able to climb them all in around 20 routes – though we haven’t worked this out in any detail yet!

Cader Idris Minffordd Path

2 – Get Fitter Shed that Christmas excess, get more exercise in and turn those uphill pulls into just another challenge rather than an ordeal. This one’s probably on most people’s lists already.Fitness training for Mont Blanc

3 – Take up Trail Running – If you want to make the most of no 1 above, then there’s no better way to up your walking fitness (other than walking of course!) Forget that expensive gym membership and treat yourself to some decent trail running kit for a fraction of the price. Get as many uphill runs in as possible. It also beats road running, and is particularly awesome in snow and at night!

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 Photo credit: GORE-TEX® Products / Foter / Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

4 – Try Bare Foot running – You don’t need to go totally barefoot to try this, just reduce your cushioning with something like the Merrel Gloves (daft name for a shoe, I know!) Reducing the protection may be counter-intuitive, but the foot’s developed over millions of years as a shock absorber and I really don’t think the big running shoe manufacturers have bettered it in a matter of decades. It may work for you, it has reduced my knee pain to zero, or it may not. The Inov8 Evoskins are a bit more extreme, and only of use once you’re away from the broken glass of the urban paths.

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5 – Improve your Navigational Skills – The first half of our navigational skills course is already online, with the rest to follow. No longer will a bit of hill fog ruin your day, and you’ll also be able to name all those hills you can see  from the summit. Assuming that the hill fog’s cleared.

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6– Winter Hill Walking – You may need to develop your skills and possibly fitness before setting out, but it’s highly rewarding! We recommend finding a willing mentor or undertaking a proper winter skills course before venturing out.

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7 –Do Things Differently – Wild camp in winter, walk under a full moon or take up a complimentary outdoors hobby.  This one doesn’t have to be hard, just purely for fun. Anything to get our there even more!

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8 – Take up a Challenge – Get a LDP under your belt, get the 14 Peaks done, unicycle from Land End to John o Groats; whatever gets you out there! The important thing to remember is that’s it’s a personal challenge, something tough but achievable. You may want to run your first 10k or something a bit more mundane like setting yourself a distance target for the year?  Ultimately, make the challenge personal. After all you’re doing this for yourself not to brag on social. Right?

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9 – Learn to leave no trace. If you’ve wondered if it’s acceptable to leave those banana skins or when you can start a campfire without being slated for it, then learn to leave no trace.

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10 – Take up Wild Camping We’ll be updating our Wild Camping section with a complete guide to Wild Camping – so keep it bokmarked!

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11 – Why not contribute to Mud and Routes? We’ll be revealing our new style Local Experts in the coming months – but anyone can contribute a walking route, wild camp, dark sky area or chat on the forum.. There will be goodie bags for those who contribute the most, with points for posting routes, locations, forum comments and even for just viewing pages!

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(c) Mud and Routes 2017

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