Walking is my mental Ctrl+Alt+Delete. It gives me time to reflect on those chaotic days and work it into manageable chunks. I love walking so much so that 3 years ago, I started a little walking group venture called ‘Cornish Ramblings.’
One of the main reasons I love getting out for a regular walk is the abundance of air available to wrap my lungs around. I don’t know about you, but I find the only way to clear my head from the muddle of a work day or the haziness from lack of sleep, is to take myself away from busy towns or built up areas, and out into the wide expanse of space that us Cornish folk are lucky enough to have, right on our doorstep. Being able to share all of this with others is a wonderful feeling and Cornish Ramblings is a perfect way to do so.
So why did I start a Cornish walking group? Well, what started as a selfish venture to explore more of my county has now become quite the opposite. I encourage people from all walks of life and from all ages and fitness levels to come for a ramble. And lucky for me, they do. I’m fortunate that my group is a mixture of ages. My goal is to encourage the younger ones as well as the older ones. I’m lucky to have my faithful regular hikers who come along to most walks and who I now value as friends. But I’m also lucky that there are usually one or two new faces at each walk I organise.
Because Cornish Ramblings is a free walking group - although I do ask for donations to keep everything running smoothly and offer a yearly £10 membership to those who want to receive the newsletter and have full access to the website - no one is expected to show up to every ramble. I like to think people can dip in and out of a walk whenever they have the time. I regularly get people who are down on holiday come along to a walk as it is a great way to see Cornwall whilst also making new acquaintances.
Since Cornish Ramblings started, we’ve been on some incredible walks across Cornwall and although I’m biased, it really is one of the most perfect places to go walking regardless of the time of year. There are endless coastlines, evocative countryside and quaint villages just on my doorstep. Bliss.
My favourite season to go walking is Autumn. I’m an old romantic so the thought of wanderings through crunchy leaves in wellies and bobble hats and rambles towards fiery sunsets in thick gloves and boots is my idea of heaven. Autumn usually means crisp fresh air with the assistance of a warm glowing sun. Although Cornwall can be quite a wet county, when you catch it on a good autumnal day, you really do feel blessed. It’s sometimes a bit odd to be in a woolly hat and sunglasses. But when you’re trekking up the side of a coastal path getting your sweat on, it’s always nice to see the sun whilst having a cool edge to stop you overheating.
Cornish Ramblings tends to head out for walks about 2-3 times a month. With having a full-time job, the walks are usually organised on a weekend and occasionally, weekday evenings. Over the past 3 years we have definitely visited a variety of places and walked a whole host of trails and pathways. From one end of the county to the other, we have covered many miles on foot and intend to cover many more. From The Lizard Peninsula, Perranporth, St. Ives and Wadebridge to Truro, Falmouth, Boscastle and Bude there isn’t a corner we haven’t travelled. However, there are plenty of spaces in between that are still undiscovered which I can’t wait to take my ramblers.
Taking people on walks has become one of my favourite things to do. I’m slightly biased because I adore walking and find the benefits of getting out there astonishing. Not only for your physical health, but your mental wealth too. When I see the faces of those who have come along for a stomp, flushed and smiling widely, I get a sense of euphoria to know there are others out there experiencing the same adrenaline kick from hiking I get.
Having Cornwall as our playground does leave me a little smug too. Many come for holidays and never want to leave, and I completely understand. Having lived in Cornwall my entire life (and having no intentions to ever leave. I mean, why would I?) I do sometimes forget the beauty of Cornwall and what it holds. It’s easy to become complacent when you see something every day. However, Cornish Ramblings reignited the love and passion for my beloved county and made me realise just how much of it I hadn’t seen yet and how much there is still to explore. Knowing there are like-minded folk who want to share this with me makes this venture even more exciting. I have been privy to some wonderful routes I’d never heard of and love nothing more than to compare walks and hiking destinations with my ramblers.
Not all my Cornish Ramblers are experienced hikers, some have started out as novices and are now hardier than I am. My website describes us as a mixture of ‘novice walkers, keen hikers, sturdy stompers, active explorers, fair-weather adventurers, hill seekers, coastal lovers, woodland ramblers and most importantly...walking addicts’.
And that’s exactly what we are.
“And all at once, summer collapsed into fall…”
If you’d like to join Cornish Ramblings for a walk then please contact Jody at firstname.lastname@example.org for further details, or head to www.cornishramblings.co.uk where you can sign up to the mailing list.