“Better to sleep in an uncomfortable bed free, than sleep in a comfortable bed unfree.”
Jack Kerouac, On the Road.
Inspired by the likes of London and Kerouac, I grew up longing for great journeys of my own. Is there a greater sense of adventure than stuffing everything you require into a single backpack and saying goodbye to a comfortable life?
Over the last few years I’ve drifted across Europe, Southeast Asia, Australia and New Zealand. All beautiful corners of the Earth with extreme landscapes and mesmerizing and diverse cultures.
Alone for the most of it, I could go wherever I wanted, whenever I wanted. I was free to roam. I had very little responsibility and nobody to answer to apart from myself. I jumped at opportunities and took risks. It was throughout this time that I developed a deep passion for the outdoors.
It all began atop the first mountain I’d ever hiked out in Australia. I was underprepared, overwhelmed and scared. I’d not seen a single person for hours, I lacked necessary warmth, my phone died and I ran out of water. I had planned to camp up top and was lucky enough to set up inside a mountain cabin. I felt alone but I was lost in the moment. I had no distractions. I was as far from the bubble of everyday life as one can possibly be. I relaxed. If I’ve ever experienced solitude, it was then.
Since that night I’ve been hooked on the outdoors. It’s the one place I can escape to reflect on life.
I am now back in the homeland and exploring further and wider than I ever have done before with the aim of inspiring others to get outdoors. I have converted my car into a makeshift camper and the last two months have taken me down to Dorset and the stunning Jurassic Coast, across to the wild Lake District and up to the peaceful Yorkshire Dales.
The rest of my spare time has been spent within the Peak District National Park. It is here that my passion for the outdoors has developed even further. Just an hour’s drive from my door, the Peaks have delivered time and time again when I’ve longed for breathtaking landscapes, sunsets and fresh air. I’ve learnt beauty can be found right on you’re doorstep, you’ve just got to get out there and look for it. I have spent countless days and nights, rain and shine, exploring its hills and edges and have never been disappointed.
On a final note, although my mountain experience has changed my life, I would never condemn anybody to head out into the wilderness unprepared. The mistakes I made could have been life threatening in other circumstances. Out of respect for the outdoors, always prepare yourself for what may happen.
Thanks for reading.