I Missed So Much

Where Did 2018 GO?

I plan to make 2019 the best year ever!

Read More

I started the year with the best intentions, I wrote a post dividing up the seasons with different crafts and things to do then completely f**ked everything up.

It’s great to have a plan but when you don’t even stick to the plan what’s the point. And the main losers are Dorothy and Beth.

I’ve beaten myself up about it quite a lot and with what’s happened recently with work, it’s really allowed me to re-evaluate my life and what’s important.

There’s probably more pictures of Bulgaria than us having fun doing family things!

So where do I go from here?

With Winter officially starting on the 1st of December, it’s time to put my to do list together and stick to it.

One of few pics of us out exploring

So what do I want to achieve this winter with the family? Here’s hoping for a plan I can stick with and not be so absent.

While I have a think, I would love some suggestions, invites to cool things and bucket lists. Here’s hoping I’ll tick them all off.

 

Hiking for This Year

My Fellwalking Guide

Fellwalking with Wainwright

Read More

As you probably know, I love a good walk in the countryside and I always hear about Wainwrights and never really knew what it meant.

So after a little bit of research, I found:

A Wainwright refers to one of 214 fells in the Lake District named after Alfred Wainwright, and hill bagging (also known as peak bagging and mountain bagging) refers to having climbed a particular hill, and the objective for some people is to climb as many as you can.

So literally throughout the past few years I’ve been bagging mountains without even knowing it. I need to sort this out.

Thankfully we’re big supporters of local charities and the book-cycle is one of our favourites.

Now while dropping in on the bookcycle, I find the beginning of something amazing.

Not only is it a book on Wainwright’s walks but it’s his 18 favourite walks in Lakeland (Lake District) for you an I.

This isn’t the best photo of the page but there’s 18 beautiful walks finished with Haystacks! Awesome.

Now I’ve already done a few of these. The Fairfield Horseshoe, Skiddaw (amazing), Scafell Pike and I think the Great Gable. But you know me, happy to put my boots on a do them again.

I’m not sure I’ll be using this to navigate but it’s a great way of imagining the walk before setting off and an insight into what to expect. For a photographer like me, I’ll be able to setup my shots before but also my rest stops (because I’m completely out of shape).

If anyone would like to join my I’m happy to set something up on my FB page: https://www.facebook.com/FourSeasonsDad/

As an honorary northerner there’s things that I haven’t done in the North West that are considered sacrilege for true Northerners. Now imagine how I felt the first time I realised that I found out my wife hadn’t watched terminator 2?

This is the reaction that Mrs P had when I revealed that I’d never been to Chester Zoo when discussing the Enchantment of Chester Zoo, the magical takeover by the team Wild Rumpus behind Just So Festival.

It’s a right of passage to visit Chester Zoo and despite the downturn in weather on the day, Dorothy and I can see why. Unfortunately Mrs P was really feeling under the weather on the Saturday morning and Bethany was already booked up. But I’m used to the rain by now having lived up here for 9 years and that wasn’t going to stop a Daddy Dottie day.
I don’t mind a good drive, especially when Dorothy is so happy shouting elephant and monkey while I make the faces in my rear mirror. It’s not just my first trip to Chester Zoo but her first trip to a zoo full stop and what a first visit.

Chester Zoo can only be described as amazing. It’s a pure expanse of wildlife, educational zones and with it being Enchanted for the day, a little big of magic too.


Walking through the main gates, we we’re welcomed into the park by the Enchanted Crew describing how they’ve all been put to sleep and it’s our job to ensure we go around the park and collect the magic sand to awaken the animals. We were given a special map to follow to find the sleepy folk along our tour.

 

Now unfortunately after reading about the amazing acrobatics, adventures, music and discovery. The weather really was that bad and unfortunately only a few of the enchanted characters were around the park when we were there. Fortunately, it also meant that there was also a lack of other visitors so we had a lot of the park just to ourselves. Woo!
Being a dad, it’s all about firsts. I didn’t expect such a reaction the first time Dorothy saw a real life elephant after loving Nellie, her teddy, since a very young age. It’s amazing that they have such an enormous life like enclosure to safely life in captivity.

They weren’t the only animals to have been given the full wildlife treatment. The island is a purpose built haven with a river and boats to go around the various real to life zones, learning about the animals in the likes of Papua, Bali and Sumatra while obviously searching for Piggies (Watch the video)

On the island is a Monsoon Forest with free flying birds which was just what was needed on a cold rainy day. Warm, colourful and exotic landscapes were really eye opening for Dorothy as she was running around pretending to be a bird. The chirping and bird song was truly breathtaking.

While also on the island, I saw my first ever orangutan. One of my favourite animals ever after seeing the Clint Eastwood classic, Every Which Way But Loose. They look so human like I can’t believe they’re an endangered species. It’s so sad but again fantastic to see them swinging around and having fun in front of an audience.

Dorothy and I had an amazing day at Chester Zoo even in the rain. I’d made a judgment call at spending the £6 to hire a trolley and it was just what was needed. I couldn’t have imagined carrrying Dorothy around the park, it was huge, especially in the rain.

We will definitely be going back to the zoo as we love Chester so now we can make full days of our adventures. As there for over two hours, we still didn’t see the whole park and we can’t wait to experience the full Enchanted Trail and save some sleeping animals.

The Enchantment of Chester Zoo

My Favourite Place

Blease Fell Tebay

Fancy Joining Me for a Hike?

Sometimes in life you just need some time to yourself. This was one of them.

Having initially gone past on a train when we finished our coast to coast charity adventure, I said to the guys I’m going to do that.

Little did I know I was going to be doing it solo almost 6 months later.

Driving up the M6 from Preston, at the part where you start to lose signal due to the massive rock formations either side, you come to Tebay Services. Well if you get off at the junction before, park up and walk for 2.5 miles, you get to some amazing views across the valley and down the M6.

As someone who literally couldn’t stand the sight of that motorway, this was a refreshing change to see it in such beauty.

If you want to do it yourself, download a GPX compatable app (just search GPX in playstore or apple store) and download the file from here.

http://www.walkingbritain.co.uk/walk-1839-description

Word to the wise, use your eyes and don’t just follow the GPS. It’s not always accurate and you never know what you’re going to miss.

Enjoy.