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May 2023

Walkingworld navigation weekends

If you want to brush up your navigation skills we've got two weekends this summer at our base in Cumbria where you can do just that. You can either come to just the Saturday or the more advanced Sunday workshop, or both if you want to progress from one to the other.

On the Saturday we'll be covering more basic map and compass skills, of the type that puts you in good stead on footpaths and through fields in typical English countryside, leading up to a session on more open hillside. On the Sunday we go further into hill navigation with the whole day on the fell, where you can learn more about how to navigate 'off-footpath'. Both days start and finish at our micro-pub, The Old Forge in Kirkby Stephen.

Your leaders will be Mountain Leader qualified and are current or ex-members of Kirkby Stephen Mountain Rescue Team, so you are in good and experienced hands. There's also an optional session each day at outdoor retailer Mad about Mountains where a member of staff will take you through what's best to have in your rucksack, both for summer and winter walking.

The weekends are the 8th and 9th July and 5th and 6th August. More information and booking
WOW walking in Austria
The distant sound of clanging cowbells; the delicate scent of wildflower meadows; and the dazzling sight of pine-forested slopes backed by an amphitheatre of jagged peaks.

Sounds too good to be true, doesn't it? But no - this dreamlike scenario is exactly what to expect from Inntravel's leisurely walking holiday in Austria's Stubai Alps. In fact, whichever of their Austrian breaks you choose, you're in for a treat: all promise excellent hotels, beautiful trails and history and culture in spades.

Austria is a destination easily reached by train from the UK - if you book with Inntravel, that is, and let their expert team work out the best routings and timings for you. There are so many benefits to journeying by rail: as well as leaving a much fainter carbon footprint than flying or driving, it is a wonderfully relaxing way to travel, with a generous luggage allowance, comfortable seating and often breathtaking views.

Plus, if you're looking to get away soon, summer is an ideal time to be in the Alps: the warmth, sunshine and light breezes coming together to provide the perfect walking conditions.

Full details of all Inntravel's self-guided walking holidays in Austria can be found on their website, 

Thinking about walking poles?

Walking poles can be seen as something only for people with injuries and ailments or those carrying heavy packs but this is very much a misconception. The correct sized poles, used well, can be a game changer for any walker on any terrain. The benefits include better balance, stability and posture and less impact on the joints, helping to reduce fatigue and improve endurance. Over time they can help strengthen and improve the muscles and increase joint mobility. They also give increased support and security when going up and down hill and are great on rocky, muddy or snowy ground.

It is important to size walking poles correctly as this can have a positive or negative effect on your body and joints and on your own safety. It is also important that they are packable and won't get in the way when you are not using them.

The correct size poles should keep your elbow at a right angle and your wrist straight. This minimises any risk of damage to your wrist. Walking poles usually come in pairs; this helps to keep your body balanced. How you use your poles helps with their effectiveness, so it is best to practise before your first walk with them.

There are many makes and types of walking pole: Mad about Mountains recommend Leki poles and can help you get the correct poles for you. You may be able to find a local course if you want to get the most from your poles. Many experienced trainers also specialise in 'Nordic walking', a particular and increasingly popular pole walking technique.

Hunt for new contributors
Have you ever wondered if you might like to contribute some walks to Walkingworld and see your routes published? We're keen to hear from you if you are. You might have a walk that you know well that you would love to share with other Walkingworld members and that you feel is missing from our library. If so we'll happily take you through the process.

For some an even easier way into becoming a contributor is to start to take over the walks of an existing contributor who feels it is now time to pass them on. Rather than just submitting changes and corrections through the app or comments, you become the new 'owner' of a walk or set of walks. This means checking them out if problems are raised and sending in new photos or waymark positions if required. You also get the royalties payable for each download at the end of the year.

If you are interested in either avenue into becoming a Walkingworld contributor, please get in touch with Chris ( and she can help you through your first contributions.

Walkers are Welcome in Corsham
Corsham in Wiltshire has an annual walking festival in June, this year taking place from the 9th to the 11th. The town is easily accessible from London, with trains to nearby Chippenham. This year there are 20 guided walks to choose from, which do need to be booked in advance. It's great to see that the Festival has joined Corsham's campaign to achieve Plastic Free Community status by signing a plastic free pledge. The main aim of the campaign is to eliminate avoidable single-use plastic from the town, and in doing so help reduce the amount of plastic that enters the ocean and the food chain.