After joining the gym in November, getting a personal trainer in December and winning ‘gym member of the month’ the following month (I’ve still not took that Mercedes SLK for the weekend loan) I had a brain wave, let’s start climbing mountains! Of course, the natural progression.

I started running in Lever Park, Rivington and eventually the Rivington Moors. There’s great variation in the terrain and when the weather’s bad it’s fantastic because those hill climbs through the trees off the trail at 730am are great fun, we don’t act like kids enough anymore in my opinion.

Like any hobby, as time goes on you learn what you need most, and that’s what you buy first to make your experience more rewarding, like a good rain coat (the one I was wearing early doors was a red mac-in-a-pac that I got for 50p from a car boot about 5 years earlier, fine but not the lovely tangarine Marmot I have now with a hood that actually does it’s job properly).

The nearest mountain to me is in Derbyshire, Kinder Scout was more inviting than it’s pal Bleaklow and since having a conversation with a fellow hiker at the foot of Kinder I’m happy with my choice…

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