Hill and mountain walks
If you're after memorable walks that will take you up and down hills and mountains steeped in history, we've got an exciting selection for you.
Follow sun-dappled paths through native woodland and enjoy uninterrupted views of the open countryside after a bracing climb.
Walking is always fun but hill walking can give you that little bit more. You're always rewarded with an incredible view after a vigorous climb.
Hill walking can be enjoyed by everyone, whether you're a family looking for an exciting day out, a seasoned adventurer, a nature lover or a relaxed rambler. Not only do we have lots of different trails to choose from but we've also got a new mini-series and hill walking tips to get you inspired and prepared for your next adventure.
In this article:
- Hill walking with Lizzie Daly
- Choose a hill walk
- Wildlife to spot on a hill walk
- Top tips for hill walking
- Help look after the landscapes you love
In our new four-part series, wildlife presenter Lizzie Daly explores how we look after the countryside so walkers can enjoy the view and nature can thrive. Throughout the series, she joins our rangers on a wide variety of walking trails that take in mountain summits, coastal landscapes, urban areas and accessible routes suitable for wheelchairs, pushchairs and mobility aids.
" Slow down and look around you. If you hear a rustle in the undergrowth, it could be a vole or a mouse. On a bright day you might see reptiles basking in the sun, butterflies fluttering or bees feasting on flowers. "
Wildlife to spot on a hill walk
Upland areas are full of wildlife. Our ranger Abbi Knight tells us that hill walkers in areas such as the Brecon Beacons can spot several different birds, including skylark, stonechat, yellowhammer, meadow pipit, red kite and buzzard.
If you keep your eyes peeled on a warm day you might spot slow worms, adders or a lizard basking in the sunshine. Other sunseekers to look out for are butterflies, especially painted lady, red admiral, common blue, meadow brown, small copper and small heath.
Abbi is part of a team that works to restore native woodland, tackle the erosion of the hillsides and put in measures to protect people and animals.
We've teamed up with our exclusive walking partner Cotswold Outdoor to make sure you're well prepared for a day of walking in the hills or mountains. Andy Perry, manager of the Cotswold Outdoor store in the Brecon Beacons, shares his top tips for getting the most out of walking in upland landscapes.
What to bring
Walking boots, comfortable socks, backpack, head torch, first-aid kit, compass, mid-layer, waterproof jacket, map and gloves.
Keeping energy levels up
Take a 20-minute break if you feel tired. Eat an energy-boosting snack such as homemade trail mix (nuts, seeds and chocolate). Stay hydrated and take about two litres of water per adult with you.
Always come down a mountain slowly and carefully, as this is when most injuries occur. Check the weather with the Met Office before you go and be aware that conditions in mountainous areas can change quickly.
Please take litter home with you
Litter not only damages the landscape it also poses a threat to wildlife. It can also fuel wildfires. That’s why we’re asking you to keep hold of your litter until you find a bin, or please take it home with you.
Our work with Cotswold Outdoor
As our exclusive walking partner, Cotswold Outdoor supports our work to look after special outdoor places for everyone to enjoy. Cotswold Outdoor give us funding to help care for walking trails so more people can access the countryside. A proportion of the discount they offer our members and supporters also goes back into vital conservation work.
We need your support
Footpaths allow us to access the landscapes we love but looking after them is tough and costly work. Remote locations, rough terrain and poor weather conditions often mean that it can take a full day to repair about two metres of stone-pitched footpath in an upland area. And at a cost of up to £180 per metre, it's expensive too.
- £4 could repair and maintain one metre of a coastal path
- £25 could buy a tonne of stone needed to surface paths and prevent erosion from rainfall
- £50 could pay for two minutes of helicopter flying time to move bags of stones to the paths that need fixing
Your support is more important than ever as we come to terms with the impact of the coronavirus - thank you.