I started 2018 in proper outdoors fashion by taking on Berghaus’ #Berghausfirstfoot challenge – 10,000 steps (5 miles) of hiking on the first day of the year, followed by my traditional New Year’s Day swim.
New Year’s Day can be a funny one, can’t it? I tend to feel torn between the desire to stay inside and nurse my hangover and the itch to get outdoors to embrace the new year. I love how lots of us have made a New Year’s Day walk with mates or the family a tradition, and I tend to cajole my friends into going for a dip in the sea with me.
This year the outdoor kit pros at Berghaus are starting a new tradition, and a challenge to get us all outdoors on the first day of the new year. In Northern British folklore, the first-foot is the first person to come into a home after the clock strikes twelve on New Year’s Day, bringing good luck with them. Berghaus’ #FirstFoot campaign turns that lovely notion on its head – what about making your good luck charm the person you step outdoors with first, instead? You can find out more about the campaign and take your pick of 10 amazing hiking routes to get you started over on the Berghaus website.
I got my hiking boots on and headed out on New Year’s day to tick of my first 10,000 steps (that’s five miles) of hiking of 2018. I wore Berghaus’ tough Gore-Tex Ridgemaster jacket on a hike to the end of the world – along the Cornish coast path to Lands End, that is. This is a magical landscape, where lush green cliffs tumble down to chalky blue ocean and the coast path leads you right t the most southern tip of England, over springy heather and past secret coves and day markers. We even saw an inquisitive seal bobbing about in the shallows.
Getting 10,000 steps under your belt is hot work, so it was slightly less difficult than I expected to pull on my wetsuit and get in the sea for my other New Years Day tradition – an ocean swim. There’s nothing more exhilarating than running full-pelt into the icy waves, and you get used to the cold pretty quickly, I promise! Plus, ticking off a #BerghausFirstFoot hike and a swim was the perfect excuse to head home and finish off all the leftover mince pies.