Motivation and goal setting – 2021


Flying high above Wasdale valley

With 2020 now thankfully behind us, we look forward with positivity to the year ahead. No, it isn’t going to be a smooth path, in fact, the Scafell Pike path seems to be a fair analogy of quite how rocky things are likely to be.
So what are we to do? Curl up and hibernate, wishing it all away? Or surge forward with strength and positivity?
The former is the easy way out, but easy is rarely the best option. And now more than ever in our lifetimes, positivity is a necessity. So please everybody, let’s go for strength and positivity.
Setting goals can help with this. They help us to stay focused and tick off little wins along the way.
There are a multitude of goals all of us could set. Ours generally lean towards mountain related topics and activities, but other subjects are available. For now, we’ll look at the mountain related stuff.
How can mountains, national parks, and the great outdoors help us?
1) Fitness: spending time outdoors is good for us, there is plenty of evidence to back this up. Actually doing some physical activity whilst outdoors is even better. Walking in the countryside is a good start. Check out what open spaces you have close to home, maybe a nearby park and start with this. Then moving on to hill and mountain walking is a natural progression from this.
Many people contact us to help them achieve their goal of summiting Scafell Pike, the highest mountain in England. This may be a goal for you too, but if you’re not fussed about climbing the highest, but want a great day in the mountains, we can help with this too.  
2) Mental health: for most of us 2020 has been a below par year, and this may have had an impact on our mental health. This can be harder to spot as it is often all internal. But we should look after our mental health as much as our physical well-being, it is just as important. Nature is a great healer and being in the outdoors, in wide open spaces will provide benefit for many of us. Being in the mountains can help even more so, lifting our self esteem, giving us renewed hope and brightness for the future we will tackle. I’ve plenty of first hand experience of the elation reaching a summit can give to a person. It really can be life changing in some instances (it was for me).
3) Motivation: okay so this can be a toughie. It’s January, we’re in lockdown number 3, good times feel a world away. But change for the better will happen faster than we realise. So yes for now, enjoy some time sitting in front of the warm fire, occasionally eating chocolate, maybe even a glass of wine. But whilst doing so, start to so the seeds for springtime and make some plans, write them down, pin them to the fridge door.
These seeds are to be your goals for the year, make them worthwhile, but realistically achievable (no round the world trips just yet)!
For many of us staying in the UK for more of the year is likely, so make some UK specific goals, get them on the list. How about trying something new, learning a new language, enrolling on a course for example. These help keep us focused.
Back to the great outdoors: The mountains can be an endless source of goals and they can always be fun to work towards. Here in the UK we have some dramatically beautiful mountains and open spaces throughout the country. Be it the wilderness of the Scottish Highlands, the chocolate box pretty Lake District, post industrial slate-scape of Snowdonia, or the slightly flatter Mendips, Pembroke, Brecon Beacons, or Dartmoor for starters. They all can give so much for so little. Walking in these places will bring peace and clear the mind, it also improves our general level of fitness, further increasing our self-esteem. 
For many, going into the mountains alone or with friends is the norm. But anyone not familiar with mountain terrain, weather, or map reading and navigation may want to consider hiring a guide. That’s where we come in.
We can provide guided walks, scrambling, rock climbing, abseiling, trail running, canyoning, and ghyll scrambling throughout the Lake District and beyond. We pride ourselves in knowing the Lake District extremely well, getting off the beaten track at every opportunity to explore more. This means we can ensure your day with us is tailored to just how you want it to be and at the right level for you.
Your ideal day in the mountains may be Scafell Pike, and that’s great, get in touch and we’ll help answer any questions about this. Or it may be another mountain or activity, we can most likely help with this too, so let us know.

Included in this blog are a few photos taken during the short 2020 season, all are in the Lake District and the majority are on/near Scafell Pike.

Thanks for reading

Mark 🙂
Footnote: currently there are travel restrictions in place throughout the UK and all of us should refrain from leaving our local area. This post has been written for a post lockdown UK, which we hope is arriving soon.


Enjoying a day of sunny rock scrambling on the Scafell massif


Atmospheric scrambling on Striding Edge, Helvellyn. Photo courtesy of Sam Marsland


Enjoying early season rock climbing in the Langdale valley


Scafell Pike summit viewed from the Ill Crag path. Broad Crag is the summit in the foreground and to the right of the photo


Canyoning in the Lake District. Photo courtesy of Sam Marsland


Some say the Wasdale path up Scafell Pike is steep. But no where near as steep as this route! This is 'Grooved Arete' on Pikes Crag, Scafell Pike. A brilliant rock climb we enjoyed during summer 2020

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