The UK is one of the world’s quintessential locations for summer rambling, walking and hiking trips, which has inspired many poets of the years including William Cullen Bryant.
In ‘A Summer Ramble’, the 19th century romantic poet William Cullen Bryant beautifully and brilliantly articulates the magnificence of walking amongst nature when “the quiet August noon has come”. He describes getting “away from desk and dust! Away!” to head out into the fresh winds and find pleasure in the “the blessing of supreme repose”.
“The quiet August noon has come, A slumberous silence fills the sky, The fields are still, the woods are dumb, In glassy sleep the waters lie.”
Needless to say, we couldn’t agree more. The UK is one of the world’s quintessential locations for summer rambling, walking and hiking trips, with beautiful landscapes rivalling those in America which inspired Bryant’s poem. From the Scottish Highlands to the Yorkshire Dales, the Welsh Valleys to the Cornish coast, you’ll never run out of new sights to see.
If you’re gearing up to get out and about, here’s our advice on the outdoor gear you’ll need to make your summer ramble superb.
Before you set off
“Beneath the open sky abroad, Among the plants and breathing things, The sinless, peaceful works of God, I’ll share the calm the season brings.”
Before you can get out and share the calm, though, you’ll obviously need to know where you’re going! There are countless amazing walks in the UK, for a start, check out ITVs Top 100 walks as voted for by you!
To help you plan your routes, or if you already have a very specific trail you’d like to follow which touches on all of your desired stops and settings, you might want to create personalised custom made maps for you and your rambling partners. Not only will these be invaluable to you on your journey, but they also make great souvenirs when the trip is over.
You’ll also need to think about what you’ll wear. British weather is temperamental at the best of times, so while we can only hope the open sky doesn’t open up, it’s best to be prepared for sun and rain.
Wet weather gear guide
Ultimate guide to layering
When you’re out and about
“When in the grass sweet voices talk, And strains of tiny music swell, From every moss-cup of the rock, From every nameless blossom’s bell.”
There’s no better feeling than being in the middle of a walk in a stunning landscape, surrounded by beauty and people you care about. Of course, being content also means being fully prepared, comfortable, and well hydrated.
Navigating is thirsty work, so why not treat yourself to a GetOutside mug for that hot cup of tea along the way, plus stay hydrated on the trails with an OS water bottle.
You’ll have your custom-made paper map with you, but if you're heading off the beaten track, it’s worth investing in a GPS system too.
Which GPS is best for you?
You’ll no doubt have your mobile phone, too. After all, it’s your way of contacting someone should there be an emergency, and it also doubles as a camera for those capturing idyllic landscape shots. If you're a digital mapping fan then consider exploring with the OS Maps app and download the free OS Locate app to ensure your safety at all times.
Setting up camp for the night
“Rest here, beneath the unmoving shade, And on the silent valleys gaze, Winding and widening, till they fade, In yon soft ring of summer haze.”
After a long day of walking, it’ll be time to pitch up. We love nights under the unmoving shade, and have covered many common camping queries recently. Check out our beginner’s guide to camping, how to campfire bread on a stick, how to light a fire safety and more by browsing our camping inspiration.
We hope you have a fantastic summer ramble - let us know where you’re going or where you went in the comments below. We’ll leave the last words to William Cullen Bryant:
“Like this deep quiet that, awhile, Lingers the lovely landscape o’er, Shall be the peace whose holy smile, Welcomes him to a happier shore.”