Social hiking at Waitby with Paul Steele and friends

In November, Waitby School hosted the first of what we hope will be many Bald Hiker Social Hikes. Organised by the Bald Hiker, world-famous travel blogger Paul Steele, the aim of these weekends is to socialise and enjoy the countryside. “I get asked many times if I would help introduce people to hiking or help them get up their first ever mountain,” said Paul in his blog. “It has been an absolute joy guiding people to help reach heights or accomplish goals that they had never thought they would get out and do.”

Shiny happy people holding wine

Shiny happy people holding wine

Hiking, the countryside and the great outdoors can be daunting for some people, who might feel intimidated by the elitism that some inexperienced walkers say they have encountered.

On these weekends, there is no competition, guests set the pace: “It’s never a slog, never a race, but pure social outdoor miles and smiles,” explains Steele.

On November’s weekend, everyone arrived on Friday night and got to know each other over drinks, before setting off on a walk to the Nine Standards on Saturday. Tired, but happy, the guests were treated with boeuf bourguignon and sherry trifle, all sourced from local suppliers, along with lots of wine.

Two of the Nine Standards

Two of the Nine Standards

The second walk of the weekend was Waitby School’s favourite walk, following the disused railway through the Smardale viaduct nature reserve, over the Viaduct and then up across the fell back to Waitby. Says Steele: “It rounded off the weekend immensely. A fine leg stretch indeed. There were views in all directions without the need to get to mountain tops; hidden riverside stops and history found along the way.”

He adds: “We laughed so much, seen so much and chatted so much. I thank all who came along, it was a true joy.”

Details of the next walk will be announced on Paul Steele’s blog and Twitter feed @Paul_Steele; as well as on Waitby School’s Facebook, website and Twitter feed @WaitbySchool.

Pin It