I have been following Alistair Humphrey’s microadventures for a while and can’t think of a better way for people to enjoy their home country without breaking the bank: Sleeping under the stars, long walks in your surrounding area, canoeing down the river for a day or even camping in your back yard. There is so much you can do to experience adventure without flying to the other side of the world to trek through the Amazon.

To join in I thought I would share five of my favourite microadventures I have enjoyed here in the UK:

1.     Snowholing in Scotland

This was definitely one of the worst and best things I have ever done. I was freezing, tired and grumpy for a large portion of day one. Yet all I had to do was look at my surrounding area, or look out of my bedroom ‘window’ and you realise just why you put yourself through some of the crazy adventures you do.

You do it for the views, for the sense of peace, that feeling of achievement and most importantly for the adventure!

If you’ve got a little bit of ‘extreme’ within you then book yourself a snowholing trip.

snowholing

2.     Canoeing down the Thames at night

A real microadventure, to be done after a day in the office.

Colleague – ‘Have a good evening, up to anything?

Me – ‘Just canoeing down the Thames’

Colleague – *silence *confused face

kayaking

But canoe down the Thames I did… and in winter! Wrapped up warm, myself and several others jumped into our canoes and spent a few hours in the dark on the river, sailing down to Greenwich where we hopped out for a warming pie and mash before jumping back in the boats to canoe home again down river. They plan the trip with the tides so you’re never battling the waves and the hot pie is a welcome break before the journey home. I certainly went to bed with a huge feeling of achievement that night.

3.     A weekend in Knoydart

Knoydart is still my number one spot in the UK for being ‘at one’ with nature and enjoying some of the most incredible natural beauty of both the UK and even the world.

The locals are friendly, the food delicious and the views spectacular. Though on the mainland, you can only get to this quiet spot of Scotland by boat or by walking for hours over the hills. I cannot express how much I love it here, so much I am almost worried to return and not get the same feeling. But return I will and I can’t wait!

Knoydart

4.     Enjoying London in a day

Having recently moved back to London I am trying really hard to make the most of living in the most cultural city in the world. There are always 500 things to do it is impossible to be bored, whether alone or with a group there is loads to keep you entertained. It sometimes takes some preparation to pre book and plan your day, but it is more than worth it to have an adventure in London Town.

Read about my recent day out in London for a few hints and tips on what to do.

Tower Bridge London

5.     Relaxing at home in the woods

I haven’t blogged much about my home, a little piece of heaven I was lucky enough to spend half my childhood growing up in. People look at me oddly when I say my dad lives in a wood, but it’s true and he isn’t a hippy tree hugger either! But instead someone who had a vision and with my stepmum Karen made that vision a reality.

After ten years of living in a caravan waiting for planning permission they finally moved into their gorgeous off grid home that most people only dream of. Dreams don’t come easy, but with belief and persistence anything is possible. Hill Holt Wood is proof of that. If ever the city gets too much or I just want to head back to the country a weekend in the woods is just the ticket. Baxter (our dog) and I can while away the hours listening to the birds, sipping tea by the lake and dreaming big… really big!

Hill Holt Wood

Competition

*competition now closed*

To show you how much I want you guys to have a little microadventure I have decided to add a little competition to this post. I’ve opted to buy a bottle of Talisker Storm Malt Whisky to give away to one lucky reader who tells me about their dream microadventure. It can be something you have already done or something you want to do, just tell me about your adventure in the comments below.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

The competition prize is from me (not Talisker) and entries must be in the UK (as posting a bottle of Whisky doesn’t come cheap folks) and of course over 18! Drink responsibly guys! I’m imagining this whisky will last for a few microadventures… just take a tipple in a hip flask to warm your cockles when you’re sleeping on a moor in the middle of Yorkshire. Perfection.

Stay safe and come rain or shine go out there and have an adventure!

OVER 18 ONLY can apply for the competition. Please drink responsibly!

6 Comments

  1. Not exciting in the dramatic sense – there was no blood, very little sweat and absolutely no tears. We didn’t climb any mountains, paddle any rapids, or cycle a series of s bends at breakneck speed.

    Back in June, inspired by everyone’s favourite microadventurer Al Humphreys, two friends and I took a train from central London out to the South Downs to make the most of the long summer days. I’d spent quite a few nights sleeping under the stars over the years, both as part of my job and for fun. My two friends on the other hand, had barely even camped in a tent at a proper campsite, let alone, as per my plan, to sleep in bivvy bags on the top of a hill.

    For me, unrolling a roll mat, getting out my bivvy bag and snuggling down for a night was, while not ‘normal’, was far from an unusual experience, and one I loved. For my two friends doing these simple things, with no tent, no walls, nothing around them, but long grass blowing in the gentle breeze was a mind-opening experience. I could sense their excitement, but also their slight fear.

    What if someone comes? What if it rains? What if it’s cold? Why are we doing this?

    I brewed tea on the gas burner and fears were quashed as throats were quenched. Biscuits eaten and warmed by tea (and a little something stronger), we made the most of the clear night to take photos of the stars and spelled out our names for the camera by torchlight.

    When we finally turned in, both of my friends slept well, though the sun woke us at 4:20am. Breakfast eaten we made our back to the train station, and actually started to sweat slightly in the heat of the morning sun and as we made sure we didn’t miss the commuter train.

    Back at our desks at 8:30am, we texted one another about how great the night had been, a magical, unconventional time together. It HAD been an adventure. We had left our comfort zone, we had felt like explorers, we had done something unusual and for my two friends, they had seen the stars, the moon and the sun from the comfort of their bed on the grass.

    We left no mark save our impressions on the grass, but I’m sure the impressions on my friends’ minds will last for ever.

  2. I love Alistair Humphries, I am jealous of Adam’s micro adventure inspired my Alistair’s blog I never quite managed to get it together. However this summer my pal Klaus and I took our bikes out of the city on several occasions and cycled around beautiful country lanes experiencing the best of the British countryside.

    I definitely will be doing more mini bike rides around the south east of england next year.

  3. Andy Webster Reply

    Many years ago I used to spend nights sleeping out under the stars. Along river banks, besides canals, even under bridges to gain some shelter. It was natural. Sometimes alone, often with friends. It was fun.

    As we grew older, settled down and went our separate ways it came to an end.

    A few years back I started to realise how I missed it and needed to rediscover that sense of adventure.

    It started again with a night early one April. Late afternoon I set off. A heavy pack with a warm sleeping bag and plenty of food and water. I walked out of town in remotest Essex along the coast, the sun slowly setting behind me. I knew not where I would stop, neither did I care, the only need to be away from normality.

    I came upon a small patch of beach, the high tide not covering it. Dropping my pack there I scouted further on to see what was ahead. Nothing but more sea wall and salt marsh. As I wandered back, gathering firewood from the tide line washed high along the sea wall by winter storms I noted how remote it felt. I could have been almost anywhere. The odd boat would pass some distance from shore but other than that I was alone.

    With a small fire going I was able to cook dinner and watch natures tv. The flames dancing in the fire. I realised how cold it was getting and that a frost had formed on my rolled out sleeping bag, it was to be a cold night. I laid a sheet of polythene over it to protect from further frost, wrapped up warm and settled.

    I hadn’t slept long when I woke to the sound of voices carrying through the still night air. It was late. I was in the middle of nowhere, alone and people were near. As I tuned into the sounds I saw torch lights coming along the sea wall. It turned out to be a group of kids on a hike, they passed by heading for the town and I was left alone again with my peace.

    A disturbed, cold night led to an early awakening at dawn. As I started the fire again, the sun began to rise, breaking through the mist as it rose above the river. A hard frost lingered as the mist began to clear. Boats began to pass, leaving on the tide and two very early morning cyclists, surprised to find me there, passed on their ride along the sea wall.

    I packed, in no hurry to leave and return to the normal day to day treadmill, away from the tranquility of that patch of beach. My beach. My escape.

    That night was like a spark reigniting my sense of adventure. I had rediscovered life and a way to get the most from it.

  4. You need lots of courage to do canoe in the middle of the night, especially in winter. I never thought of that. Would you repeat the experience again?

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