Mountain Thoughts: Freedom of Adventure
What you do everyday matters more than what you do once in a while.
We often find ourselves in such spectacular scenery, and somehow, after a while of being in one place, we take it for granted. On a recent day trip we set out to think and feel the complete opposite, to find one spot where we could really appreciate and soak up our surroundings.
It’s our main reason for having a Sprinter Van, the amount of freedom we have to simply roam wherever we please and spend the night. We have freedom of movement but also free will.
I knew a superb place to start our day adventure, a ’surprise view’ in the Lake District. We drove down the edge of Derwenwater and then made our way up high on a meandering road and over the quaint ‘Ashness’ bridge, just wide enough to fit us through to the other side. We could already see the vast landscape below peaking through the trees but, it wasn’t until we were further up into the hills that the woodland opened up to a cliff edge, revealing the vista towards Bassenthwaite Lake.
Freedom lies in being bold. Although it was going to be very chilly, even with the sunshine, Sophie immediately wanted to dive into the sparkling water and go wild swimming. After relaxing above the tree tops, we made our way down to the pier we had noticed from our birds eye view.
With the right precautions open water swimming can be great fun, but, like any outdoor activity, it has its risks. Fresh water/lakes are dangerous for being very cold towards their centre. Sadly there have been cases where people have gone swimming in UK lakes and tarns and have drowned. Because of the lack of buoyancy and sudden drop in body temperature, they either go into shock or over exert themselves, cramping up and leaving them unable to swim.
Sophie swam close to and along the shoreline to allow her body to adapt to the water’s temperature. Plunging into the water was easier than one icy cold step at a time.
She let out a squeal as she returned to the surface. Losing a bit of breath was unavoidable, but it soon became a pleasant dip.
Armed with blankets I walked along the lakeside and basked in the sun, watching as small boats and kayaks crossed the horizon line.
It’s important to collect moments, not things, and that’s exactly what we set out to do. Mission accomplished.
Hinturland co-founders Sophie and Reuben voluntarily live in a MWB Sprinter van in relentless pursuit of outdoor adventure, personally and as instructors. They immerse themselves in the UK mountains they call home, taking part in a full range of dry and wet activities, including mountaineering, trail/fell running, climbing, canoeing/kayaking, mountain biking and tree top swinging. They believe adventure is a mindset and that your attitude determines your direction. Sophie and Reuben will almost certainly try anything at least once.