Newsletter > Newsletter archive > September 2019

September 2019

Options for an emergency
A certain location sharing service has been in the news recently and a few members have asked for our opinion. What3Words is one of a number of apps that can be used to convey your location, so is it a good idea to install it, or some other app, on your device?

Emergency services do have ways of obtaining a location from your phone if you have an inbuilt GPS and a mobile data signal. However in remote places you may be restricted to a simple phone signal, so it's useful to be able to quote your location verbally or in a text.

You will need an app that functions without a mobile data signal. What3Words fulfils that criterion, as does Ordnance Survey's OS Locate and the many mapping apps that operate 'offline'. What3Words interrogates the phone's GPS and provides a three word 'code' such as 'claims.expectant.vine' denoting a 3m x 3m square. OS Locate, on the other hand, gives a 6 figure OS grid reference such as NY843102, for a 100m x 100m square.

Although the former is more precise, most search and rescue teams are perfectly happy with a 6 figure OS grid reference. They'll find you! The OS grid reference is arguably simpler to give over a poor phone signal and it saves the call handler from having to translate a code into a grid reference. But any location reference you give will be welcomed.

More important than any such technical solution is maintaining awareness of your location throughout your walk and being able to describe where you are in plain words. This is a vital confirmation of the location your phone is giving you, which may not always be correct.

While you're thinking of emergency preparations it's worth registering your phone to send text messages to 999. To register on the service text 'Register' to 999. If texting for help include all the key details: the service you want (e.g. Police / Mountain Rescue), your location, type of incident, casualties, the number in your group and anything else you consider relevant. But remember a voice call will be dealt with quicker so try this first and only try a text if you cannot get through.

Winter sun with HF Holidays
If you are looking for a dose of warming winter sun, HF Holidays has a great selection of 7-night breaks to choose from.

In the Canary Islands, rocky, volcanic Lanzarote encompasses dramatic views and contrasting landscapes. You can visit the charming neighbouring island of La Graciosa and explore the fascinating old capital, Teguise. The mountainous terrain of La Gomera is a walker’s paradise, with exhilarating routes spreading out across the dramatic, rugged island landscape. This small island manages to squeeze in breathtaking barrancos, laurisilva forest and the wonderful Garajonay National Park. One of the lesser known Canary Islands, La Palma, offers mountain walks amidst the island’s beautiful and relatively undiscovered landscapes, with its dramatic volcanic scenery and lush forests, and a warm and pleasant climate year-round.

Elsewhere, the wild Atlantic coast of Western Algarve boasts dramatic cliffs, varied landscapes and Cabo de Sao Vicente, the most westerly point of the Algarve. There are pretty coastal routes with beautiful limestone cliffs, sandy white beaches and secluded coves. Madeira is a unique tropical gem offering diverse walking experiences, from the famous levada paths to waterfalls, lush valleys and the wild beauty of the coast. And in Cyprus you’ll discover lush green landscapes and charming villages, with walks between Byzantine ruins and vineyards, and along the wild Akamas Peninsula.

Find out more about the choice of walks, dates and locations at or call 020 3974 8868.

Winter Sun 2020
Lanzarote - 1 Feb or 8 Feb departures, 7 nights from £1,179pp
La Gomera - 18 Jan, 25 Jan or 1 Feb departures, 7 nights from £1,499pp
La Palma - 16 Jan, 23 Jan departures, 7 nights from £1,099pp
Western Algarve - 15 Feb, 22 Feb, 29 Feb departures, 7 nights from £949pp
Madeira - 13 Jan departure, 7 nights from £1,099pp
Cyprus - 9 Feb or 16 Feb, 7 nights from £1,049pp
T&Cs: Subject to availability. Offer price shown is per person based on 2 sharing a standard room. Non-member fee £10pp applies. Offers end 4.10.19. See website for details.

Slovenian getaways
Walk Slovenia are the providers of beautiful walking holidays in the foothills of the Slovenian Alps, offering fully inclusive week-long getaways at their award-winning hotel, Pri Lenart. Set to the backdrop of some of the most stunning alpine panorama available in this beautiful secluded corner of Europe, there are hikes each day accompanied by expert local guides. Each day brings a new location and a new set of breathtaking views!

After your hike, the hotel is a place where you can relax in luxury. You can take a dip in the hot tub or unwind on our outside veranda taking in the views before enjoying a delicious gourmet four-course meal lovingly prepared from local organic produce, often from the hotel's own kitchen garden.

The summer season runs from May through to October, with a stable climate usually giving beautiful sunny days and clear alpine views. Walk Slovenia also offer Winter Walking experiences including a wine tasting visit to the Primorska wine-growing region and over the New Year period a visit to Ljubljana’s iconic Festive Market. The hotel is open to individuals or groups with a maximum of 10 guests per week. For more information or available dates, visit the Walk Slovenia website or call +386 41 650 321 to start your adventure.

Leef Peeping
The Forest of Dean and Wye Valley is certainly one of the best places to enjoy the autumn colours and what is claimed to be the UK's first Leaf Peeping Drive has just been launched by Forest of Dean and Wye Valley Tourism. The guide features a recommended route through the region to experience the very best of the autumn hues, as well as a series of walks, seasonal events and activities for visitors of all ages and interests.

'Leaf Peeping' is, apparently, growing in popularity in the UK, the pastime having crossed the Atlantic from North America where people traditionally go out to view and photograph the foliage as it turns from green to yellows, reds and golds. The Leaf Peeping Guide is available at