This year the outdoors has always been there for us and helped us through the fluctuating restrictions, given us something to look forwards to and also been used as a positive. Our annual Christmas treasure hunt had to be really local this year, so we also put a call out for your Treasured Outdoor Moment. The real treasure has proven to be able to catch those moments outside safely whenever we can. We know how important that is and it's evident you all do too (but we knew that already!)
It was such a tough task to pick a winner, but the team deliberated and ended up picking a 'Stranger on the hill' story from Sheridan. You can read her story along with their runner up and 3rd and 4th picks below. Oh and all the special mentions!
We really were blown away by all the responses, it was amazing and so up-lifting, thank you so much for joining in and wanting to inspire each other through what has been a challenging year. In fact we had so many, we're not going to leave it here. For the moment some teasers of what we've received, then we'll be linking to full stories over the next few weeks. Not only that, look out for more coming soon too! They are certain to fill you with inspiration, excitement and positivity for the year ahead. As you'll see, no matter how small or big those moments are, it's just great to get out. Let's hope 2021 is a Go Nice Places, Do good Things year.
WINNER Sheridan Demi Kyte - Thank you to this stranger who became my friend for a small part of today. I always find it magical, meeting people, bumping into them by chance, it can be as if two paths cross at just the right time, for a purpose. Read the Daring Deed!
RUNNER UP Elisabetta Motta - On Christmas morning I was as excited as a child looking at the presents under the tree, even though the only things waiting for me under the tree were my hiking boots and my rucksack. Read the Daring Deed!
Nina Carter-Brown - As I ran out after my dip, I saw them on the steps to the beach cheering me out the water with big smiles on their faces, although I had the biggest smile! Read the Daring Deed!
Manouk Bakermans - I took out my bivvy and stayed the night. The sky was so clear and there was no light pollution. I lost count of how many shooting stars I'd seen. It was amazing. The next day started clear, but ended up cloudy and misty. Read the Daring Deed!
Catherine Gainey - Curiosity got the best of me, and I emerged from the tent only to see my boyfriend about 30ft away, keeled over in laughter so hard that he couldn't even speak.
Zeynab family - We made an early start in the minus 4 Christmas morning frost and due to Covid travel restrictions, headed for our closest Lakeland lake, Rydal water. Whilst I had a lengthy swim in the crystal clear water, they were happy to splash around the water’s edge in their wellies.
Carly - At the end of February (a leap year!) I proposed to my partner of 10 years after a day of ice climbing. Then, on the 1st September with our 2 best friends as our witnesses we married in the Caernarfon registry office. After the ceremony we all climbed to Llyn Glas near Crib Goch in our wedding gear. Please see the attached photos from our 5 hour hike! This is the best thing that happened for us in 2020. I can't believe we were actually able to be wed. I hope it puts a smile on your face!
Harry Botley - Anyone who has ever stayed in a bothy will be able to tell you the same thing: they have a profound ability to feel like home even in the most remote of locations.
Steve Boy - Bivvying in a new spot I’d had picked out as my ‘winter camp’ It worked a treat, nice fire, nearly full moon so a great view and just lacking a bit of snow.
Andrew Bidolak - The reason I'll treasure my outdoor moments on the Oldham Way this Christmas is because - here I risk serving up more cheese than was on that pizza I had! - they reinforce the hopeful things that 2020 has reminded me of...
Rosie Cole - Then, as if the weather gods had taken pity on us, the cloud suddenly dispersed and we were treated to a beautiful view across the lakes. Daft poses and shrieks of glee and slight moans as we tried to snap pics on phones with increasingly cold fingers! Read the Daring Deed.
Phililpa Haworth - So this December I decided to run every day of the month. I’ve done this before and after seeing so much rubbish in the Lake District on my local runs this year, I decided to litter pick on every run and see how much I could collect.
Laura Massey-Pugh - It started off with festive tandem deliveries- spreading festive cheer, cards and gifts on a bicycle made for two!
Scott Deschain - I started in part to prove to myself that I was categorically 'good at something' with no way to second guess myself on it and whilst I don't believe in sudden epiphanies or Instagram comments about "feeling renewed, back in touch with nature and reminded to work to live not live to work", I did get what I needed and more from it.
Sophie Eaden - Armed with a flask of tea and cookies we steadily climbed up to High Willhayes so we could be at the highest point on Dartmoor to watch the sunrise. It was probably the most magical sunrise I've ever witnessed for many reasons.
Saskia Martin - I am lucky to have such glory in architecture on my doorstep, but when your heart desires the outdoor and most of all the wilderness, you yearn for it daily.
Laura Chamberlain - Most of my friends have never wild camped before, and I persuaded one reluctant friend from university to head up to mermaids pool for a night of freezing December camping.
Dom Raad - Dinner was a Mexican feast and after a small toast we went to bed very satisfied. I remember climbing into my bivvy bag as it started snowing but my PipeDream 400 kept me warm all night despite it being below zero.
Ian Selby - I was wrapped up in my cocoon of sleeping and bivvy bags, lying next to the car in the carpark at the western end of Ennerdale Water. I’d hardly slept a wink because of the cold and the late night visitors who nearly parked on top of me.
Simon Lea - Unsatisfied by the light dusting of snow provided around the house, the two young adventurers enlisted my services to Sherpa their sledge up to the local trig point.
Robert Nash - My treasured moment of 2020 wasn’t the winter bivi’s. It wasn’t the wild camping on beaches for 12 days between lockdowns. It wasn’t the numerous walks up the 3 peaks of Yorkshire. Nope! It was none of those. My treasured moment was getting married on Flascoe Bridge in Austwick on Christmas Day, one year on from my proposal during a walk where I went down on one knee and offered a wooden ring I had carved while we were walking!
Emma Gerrard - Despite the disappointment of not having a "normal" day with family, it was a perfect substitute to share the company and love of friends, fresh air and enjoy the great outdoors.
Zoe Burns - We celebrated the start of this new year and new opportunities with an explore of the fairy woods in West Wemyss, rock scramble and stone skimming, followed by cooking up popcorn and marshmallows with melted chocolate.
Jack Paton - In a year full of turmoil and uncertainty over our exams, my friends and I were all just glad to escape the confines of our house for a week and spend some time in the fresh, Scottish air.
Amber Pilley - Like most people who find joy in being outside; lockdown set my brain about day dreaming about walks on the coast path, long days cycling and cold evenings around smokey campfires.
Tim Norris - The plan was to ride for a few hours and take a newish piece of kit with me to test out and start my inspiration for 2021. So I packed a hip flask of whiskey and hammock and headed out for a pedal and relaxing hang about in the trees.
Catherine Applewhite - We ran after the most stressful, hideous shift ever. Full of adrenaline from the shocking situations dealt with that day. The whole time we talked, debriefed and off-loaded our stress. At the end I unbelievably ran my fastest ever 5k and got local legend on Strava.
Luke Beckett - Snow started to gently drift down around us, and a couple of minutes later as we finished our mulled wine and it started to settle, a robin flapped down next to us to peck at a bit of mince pie crust. Read the Daring Deed
Daisy Atkin - Together we have pushed our boundaries and had so many amazing adventures together - we did our first bivvy (in the amazing Hunka XL!), our first wild camp, lots walking, and of course our shared love of outdoor swimming.
Sarah Shorter - I was extremely happy and grateful for the opportunity to have a local hike together and practice a bit or archery, then warm up and upgrade our little outing to a mini adventure by cooking a simple snack of quail eggs and a cup of hot chocolate.
Rich Baldwin - I was apart from all my family on Christmas Day so made the best of it with a long run around the Dark Peak, starting and finishing at Parkin Clough and heading out and around the icy edges of Kinder. Fuelled by good coffee for breakfast and Christmas dinner was a Mountain Fuel flapjack and gel.