My Bucket List

My ever-evolving bucket list fills me with excitement when I look at it –  but more than that it gives me focus and purpose. I look at my list at the start of a new year and it’s full of promise – everything’s ripe for the picking. And once I’ve picked something, I get planning. Then I get hiking. And then, finally, I revel in the ticks ✓ and amazing memories.

I hope my list inspires you to add a few things to yours! (Here’s what I’m planning this year.)

UK Hiking

To solo hike all UK long-distance national trails (6/15: 1,012/2,500 miles):

South West Coast Path
Norfolk Coast Path and Peddars Way
South Downs Way
Cotswold Way
Offa’s Dyke Path
The Ridgeway

Remaining trails:
Pembrokeshire Coast Path; Glyndwrs Way; Thames Path; North Downs Way; Pennine Way; Pennine Bridleway; Yorkshire Wolds Way; Hadrian’s Wall Path (+ the England Coast Path – when it’s finally finished!)

Hike Scottish Trails:

Great Glen Way; Southern Upland Way; Speyside Way; Cape Wrath Trail; West Highland Way

Explore the UK’s 15 National Parks (10/15 visited):

ExmoorDartmoor ✓ Broads ✓ Lake District ✓ Eryri (Snowdonia) ✓ Bannau Brycheiniog (Brecon Beacons) ✓ North York Moors ✓ Yorkshire ✓ Dales ✓ South Downs ✓ New Forest

Remainiong NPs :
Pembrokeshire Coast; Peak District; Northumberland; Loch Lomond and The Trossachs; Cairngorms

Others
The Dartmoor Way
Two Moors Way
 Land’s End to John O’Groats
Hike the Wales Coast Path
Walk on Skye and other Scottish Islands
Walk the Devon/Cornwall border along the Tamar (Tamara Trail)
Striding Edge/Swirral Edge (Lake District)
Wainwright’s Coast To Coast
Take part in an LDWA challenge walk
Winter hiking in snowy mountains

World Hiking

✓ Hike the Inca Trail
AT, PCT, CDT (USA) – at least one of them!
John Muir Trail, USA
Camino de Santiago Spain
TMB France
GR20 Corsica
Kungsleden Sweden
Te Araroa New Zealand
Trek through South America
Trek in Nepal

Me on the mountains of Dead Woman's Pass in PEru

Other Adventures

✓ Run a coastal ultra marathon (28 miles)
✓ Invent and complete my own adventures and challenges
✓ Solo wild camping
Via Ferrata
See the Aurora Borealis
See a moving glacier
Visit some of the US National Parks
Stay in a Scottish bothy with an open fire
Ziplining
✓ Kayaking (Florida)
✓ Abseiling (down a building)
Paddleboarding
White water rafting
Whale watching

So many more, probably not enough time!
(Or, far more accurately, not enough funds…)

A Few Life Goals

A bright colourful drawing of a line of trees.

Done

✓ Study fine art (BA and MA)
✓ Train as a Lowland Leader
✓ Study PGCE
✓ Sell/exhibit artwork
✓ Ran a business (14 years)
✓ Guest on podcasts
✓ Publish articles
Create a library of women’s hiking stories (begun!)
✓ Raise money for charity
✓ Volunteer with the Wildlife Trust

To Do

Train as a Hill and Moorland Leader
Run a business (again) – inspire others to overcome any barriers and get outside to enjoy hiking and walking
Write and publish a book
Become a speaker
Start a podcast
Sell/exhibit my artwork (again)
Have a lot more fun!

I feel like my life goal list needs to be bolder – and frankly more honest! I have other bigger, bolder life goals, but I’m holding back on sharing them because right now they seem impossible.

Dreams aren’t about impossibilities but as I write this (autumn 2023) I’m in the mire of yet another depressive episode which has a way of wiping out any self-belief I have. And with every bout of illness, I have to build my self-esteem up from nothing again- a never-ending, exhuasing viscous circle. Well, here’s to recovery and finding a way though!

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