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TrailMail
from Vespucci Adventures 
February 2021
For all the (nature) lovers out there...
For the shortest month of the year, February sure does have a habit of feeling like the longest. People love to complain about it, telling you 'it's just a case of getting through it'. Every year we await its arrival with dread, and once it is here, it remains all anyone can talk about. Perhaps it's about time someone stood up for it. Maybe, February isn't so bad. Maybe we're the problem. Here are a few things to help turn your February frown, upside down...
Instructions for reading your TrailMail:
 
1. Kettle on
2. Feet up
3. Settle in
 

Outsider of the Month

February's guest 'Outsider of the Month' is the delightful and talented Celia Hodgson. Celia is a digital content creator, running her own video production company known as '@celia.films'. We caught up with her (virtually) for our mini-interview and here's what she had to say...
So Celia, what is hiking to you?
"Whilst I’m not the most avid ‘hiker’, and am partial to a grumble half way up a big hill, I’m a big fan of a long walk to have some time to think and have a break from my day. I’ve been lucky enough to not be working in my bedroom over the lockdowns, but the ‘commute’ from my house to my hut isn’t enough to stretch the legs and blow off the cobwebs. I make the time to do one cracking walk every weekend, and I use it as my chance to reset and assess the week ahead."
 
What are your pearls of hiking wisdom? 
"Bring snacks and a thermos of tea. Crucial. But also, don’t be too worried about where you are going, as long as you have a clear end point, how you get there is all part of the fun."
How would you persuade someone to go hiking if they'd never been before?
"It doesn’t have to be a big ol hike, but getting out and breaking up your routine is so important, especially at the moment. Whilst the current restrictions mean walking with a friend is about the only legal socialising you can do, remember to also do a walk or two on your own and use the time to let your mind wander..."


To check out some of the awesome things @celiafilms have created, head over to their website.

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Treat 'em Klean, keep 'em keen.
Over the next few days, we're joining forces with our favourite reusable bottle company, Klean Kanteen for a week of collaborations, conversations, competitions.

For our 'In Conversation With' debut, we chat to Beth from Klean Kanteen and discuss sustainable business and nature loving (without the cat filters, or Jackie Weaver).

 
There will also be a competition running throughout the week with multiple prizes from both of us up for grabs. Don't say we don't treat you.
Keep an eye on our Instagram and social media channels to catch our week with Klean Kanteen and what we're getting up to.

Hiking in Words, Film and Music
You may not have known, but aside from our phenomenal hikes Vespucci is also world-renowned for our stunning craftsmanship of Spotify playlists.
 
 Click here for the ultimate walking-themed playlist.
 
Watch:
A Walk in the Woods
Sweet film adaptation of Bill Bryson's hilarious  book by the same name.
Read:
Becoming Odyssa
One woman's story of her time on the Appalachian Trail.
Listen:
You'll Never Walk Alone
In honour of the late, great Captain Tom and the amazing funds this song raised.

Captain Sir Tom Moore:
The Power of Walking
We celebrate the phenomenal final years of the man who raised £39 million for the NHS, and provided so much light in such dark times.
Aged 100 years old, Captain Sir Tom Moore raised nearly 39 million pounds for the NHS, the record for the most amount of money raised for a walking event, and became the oldest person to hold a number one single. Captain Tom's achievements were both uplifting and inspiring. However, it was not just his achievements that captured the nation, it was his spirit that truly won us all over. 
     Until recently, the notion that a man who fought in the second World War would achieve such notoriety for walking around his garden would have seemed a little strange. To people fortunate enough not to have lived during a major conflict, the idea that the nation's wellbeing could be helped by the actions of an individual, may seem absurd.
 
Yet, Captain Tom's actions and accomplishments did just this. He turned something as 'simple' as walking, into a great, charitable feat and taught us all a lesson in making a difference. 
       Captain Tom said that his journey "put a spring back in his step", highlighting the immense power that something as simple as walking can have. Whilst there is so much more to his story, it all began by putting one foot in front of the other.
       In an attempt to honour  such a man, let us try to remember his words, “I would like us all to stand shoulder to shoulder – metaphorically. Let’s try not to get downhearted, we will get through this, whatever is thrown at us and together we can ensure that tomorrow will be a good day.”

Locked down, not locked up
 
Whilst it may feel like we're all a little trapped right now, let's not forget just how much we still have at our fingertips. Here are a few ideas of nature related activities that you can still enjoy from the (compulsory) comfort of your own home.
Wildlife from your window banner image
For Covid-friendly indoor and outdoor activities, head over to the Wild London website and find some inspiration.

Winterwatch on the BBC is the perfect place to brush up on your nature-knowledge, or get your daily dose of wintery wildlife.


The Hikeu




Planning your escape?

Getting prepared for an adventure might be as far as we can go right now, but we're going to be so ready when that day does come. Here's a few bits to get you started.  
 
Where to go:
A challenging hike, beginning with Beachy Head and Seven Sisters and meandering over Cuckmere Haven
Shop Hikes
What to bring:
Grab one of our sustainable, durable water bottles whilst you can and help tackle plastic pollution!
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