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The finest small group vacations in rural Britain


Hiking and walking in Britain

At Easter the trees are in bud and the nodding daffodils are flowering, in April and May the countryside is bedecked with a stunning display of wild and meadow flowers. In summertime our hedgerows and cottage gardens are in glorious full bloom before the hills are carpeted by the late summer heather. In October the trees are transformed with beautiful autumnal hues before winter sets in - there's nothing more rewarding than wrapping up warm for a winter's walk before returning home to a real fire.

Britain enjoys long summer evenings, where night falls around 11.00p.m. at Midsummer. In the winter months (December, January and February) the days are short, however the high pressure clear frosty weather which sometimes occurs affords stunning views and is exhilarating for walkers.

For the visitor, it is not necessary to have a lot of specialist gear, but it is more important to be correctly prepared.

From a meteorologist's viewpoint, our constantly changing pattern of weather is softened by the surrounding influence of a relatively warm sea. In upland regions the changes are accentuated. Weather in or on the hills can also be very localized.

Britain is subject to a variety of different airstreams which alter frequently giving our climate its reputation for changeability. We recommend bringing the following clothing and equipment when walking. The items in blue are essential.

  • Walking boots - It's a good idea to "break them in" or wear them a few times before your vacation.
  • Thick socks/ Inner socks - a thinner sock will help improve the fit of your boots. This can also help reduce blisters.
  • Trousers/Pants - specialist lightweight walking pants are ideal, however synthetic pants are just as good for most, for example long jogging/sport pants. NO JEANS OR COTTON TROUSERS /PANTS. These have no heat retention when wet and are extremely unsuitable for our climate.
  • T-shirts/ undershirts - ideally made of 'wicking' synthetic material, although this is not necessary. The experts say that cotton shirts don't let your body breathe (therefore your clothes get wet through perspiration) but don't worry - we're not going to be scaling Mount Everest on a LancasterAuthentic walking vacation!
  • Shirts
  • Pullover/ Thick walking shirts
  • Warm walking jacket or warm polyester fleece
  • Waterproof jacket with hood - some walkers prefer breathable fabrics like Goretex or Sympatex to improve comfort, however this is a personal choice.
  • Waterproof overtrousers
  • Day sac - (around 20-30L) big enough to take your waterproofs, drink, camera etc.
  • Day sac liner or large plastic bag to keep your day things dry.
  • Shorts (in summer)
  • Sun hat Gloves
  • Small water bottle
  • Sunscreen
  • Personal first aid kit with plasters and any personal medication
  • Camera
  • Sunglasses
If you come walking in the winter months, (October to Easter) it is necessary to bring some extra clothing items along.

  • An extra sweater for warmth.
  • One or two extra t-shirts.
  • Warm hat or Balaclava
  • Scarf
  • Gaiters
Our guides carry other essential walking navigation equipment (compass, whistles etc). Please contact us if you have any questions concerning what to bring on your vacation. Any independent walkers using these pages for reference who are not traveling with us will need the necessary navigation equipment, day and emergency rations in addition. The Mountin Walking Leader Training Board website is at


This trip is well within the ability of any reasonably fit person, irrespective of age. All our walks are between five and ten miles per day. The walks take place on old footpaths and tracks, occasionally on roads, through pastureland, also up on the moors or hills. On occasions, the going underfoot may be stony, rough and can also be boggy or slippery, depending on recent weather. There will also be plenty of wooden or stone stiles and sometimes small streams to cross.

Most of our walks take place in undulating countryside where we may ascend five hundred feet at times. Such climbs are usually achieved over a mile or more, and are therefore not terribly steep. Exceptionally, a day's walk involves a climb of over a thousand feet throughout the day.

Back-up transport is also available on our scheduled walks.

IT IS VERY IMPORTANT , especially if you have not been walking for some time, that you test your fitness levels before coming on a LancasterAuthentic vacation. Walking for approximately the distances described above, involving some climbing, is recommended if you are at all unsure.


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    The finest small group vacations in rural Great Britain. Lancaster Authentic, Tour operator of quality Walking Vacations & Driver Guide Tours
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