I was introduced to the phrase Microadventure by a friend who read an article in a magazine by Alastair Humphreys. Here’s a short quote from his website:
“That is why I came up with the idea of microadventures. Simple expeditions and challenges which are close to home, affordable and easy to organise. Ideas designed to encourage ordinary people to get Out There and Do Stuff for themselves, even in these tightened financial times.”
The idea of a microadventure is to do something you would not normally do to move outside your comfort zone and break your daily routine. It’s too easy to get stuck in a pattern where you work, eat, sleep and repeat. An adventure doesn’t have to have months of planning, it doesn’t need to be a two week expedition, it is by definition: “an unusual and exciting or daring experience.” It can be as simple as going for a cycle and going down a road you’ve never been before or going a walk and cooking your dinner on an open fire.
On Wednesday night I decided to have my own microadventure. The idea was to do a short hill walk, spend the night on the hill and get up early for work in the morning.
I quickly packed my rucksack and left the house at 7 pm. I arrived in Loch Lomond just after 8 pm and threw my rucksack onto my back. I walked a short distance to the start of Beinn Dubh and made a quick ascent to a small plateau a few hundred meters up. I found a fairly flat section of ground to pitch my tent which provided spectacular panoramic views over Loch Lomond.
I sat inside my tent, sheltered from the wind and eat my dinner as I watched the landscape slowly fading into darkness.
A few hours later I climbed into my sleeping bag and drifted off to sleep. I’m not going to lie, I’ve never had an amazing night sleep whilst wild camping, but you can’t beat the feeling of being cocooned in a thin sheet of nylon whilst listening to the wind battering against the side of the tent. I feel vulnerable yet completely protected. I woke up a few times during the night after sliding off of my matt (I had pitched on a slight slope) and from the pitter-patter of of light ran hitting against the tent.
I woke up at 5 am and set up my camera and tripod for the sunrise. It was an overcast morning and unfortunately the sun didn’t shine through until it was time for me to leave, but it felt great just being there.
I quickly packed away my tent and walked back to my car.
By 6:45 am I was back at my car and it was beautiful spring morning. I drove 50 minutes to work, had a hot cup of coffee, showered and was ready to start by 8 am. My head was completely clear of any stress and I was in one of the best moods I’ve been in weeks.
If you’re reading this blog thinking “I’d like to do that” then stop “thinking” and start doing!
Don’t live your adventures through other people, create your own.
Footnote: If your looking for inspiration, having a look at http://www.alastairhumphreys.com/ where you’ll find it in spades!