Toasty ToesNovember 24, 2019 5:39 pm
Rounding Up the 2019 Season
What a season 2019 we’ve had! I am back in the UK after the quickest of all quick breaks in St. Lucia. It was wonderfully warm and the fruit was divine – I shall be a convert to banana ketchup from this day forward ?
This year we managed a record 13 tours; over 100 people adventured with us across 6 of the most breath-taking AONBs.
And despite the shaky British summer we were so very lucky with huge blue skies all the way!
The Wye Valley, Brecon Beacons, Mendip Hills, North Wessex Downs and High Weald – they were all exceptionally beautiful and I do hope you enjoyed them as much as we did!
I have had so many favourites from this year’s collection and am deeply fortunate to have such talented crew to help me with these tours.
Please join me in thanking your tour guides for 2019; Trevor, Sue, Charlotte and Teresa.
It really does take the most astounding skills to deliver such a fun day out and each tour is a completely unique experience put together for our small groups.
The amount of love and care that goes into each tour is just amazing!
As you know the tour donations go towards supporting a different local charity each season. This year’s charity was Be Free YC; a really wonderful initiative that improves the lives and well-being of young carers.
These are young children who care for someone, usually in their family, that may be ill or disabled or elderly, and it affects approximately 1 in 12 teenagers in the UK.
I am delighted to announce that we raised £150 for this wonderful cause. I am so thrilled with the results!
My thanks and appreciation go to every single one of our members. Without your generosity and honesty, pay-what-you-want tours simply wouldn’t work.
I am hoping it’s contagious!
This really is my favourite time of the year, when I begin the hunt for something new and exciting for us to do.
I feel fully recharged and ready for the creative frenzy that is coming over the next few weeks.
Travel is a marvellous thing and since our season ended, I’ve already been on 6 tours – testing out new activities for us – no sitting back and taking it easy here!
Some of you met the legendary naturalist Steve England this season – a splendid man who can make anything edible with a knob of butter.
I like the idea of spending more time with Steve next season – how glorious would it be to cook a full 5-course meal with only foraged foods?
I have been inspired by the idea of doing something airborne next year too – perhaps a paragliding or hot air ballooning or skydiving…. It’s looking like I really must try them all before I can pick one ?
Since many of you have requested it, horse riding and kayaking will definitely be back – they’re becoming staple favourites for every GoTread season. The off-road buggies have proven so popular I am expecting us to be doing more high-speed-adrenaline-pumping pursuits too.
Caving is also hugely entertaining and my fixation for this hobby shows no signs of abating – I suspect a trip or two underground may be on the cards!
Next year the GoTread family is expanding and we’ll be running more dates than ever before.
It is going to be easy to make 2020 your year for going to new places and for trying out new things – Don’t forget to book yourself in as soon as the tours go online in January!
As I write this inside a warm coffee shop in Cardiff, I am happy to see the Cardiffians have got their Christmas decorations up in all their splendour and mulled cider is lining the glasses. I am now feeling officially festive!
Finally, I recommend some forest-walking over the festive season. Whatever the weather has in store this winter, forests are eternally beautiful across the seasons. I hope you get to enjoy lots of stunning colours across the changing winter landscape.
And I wish you an indulgent few weeks and rest with your loved ones – that’s what the holidays are for!