The UK is known for its scenic walks, with hundreds of different routes across the nation. As we look to get fitter, save pennies, or simply gain some balance back into our lives in 2022, walking can be a great and sociable way to get outdoors.

Challenging mountainous walks prove popular, with Snowdon in Wales topping the list as the most popular walk, with over 4 million people looking for routes up the mountain. Ben Nevis, the highest mountain in Scotland came in second place and Scafell Pike, England, is the third most popular amongst walkers. Whether it be for the scenery, accessibility or fresh air, the retailers’ research reveals that the north of the UK has the most popular outdoor walking routes, as eight of the top 10 are located in the north.  The retailer also found that UK ramblers favour routes by water, with the majority of the top 10 passing by rivers, reservoirs or coastline.

Sealskinz’s analysis showed that the top 10 walks in the UK are as follows:

  1. Snowdon, Wales
  2. Ben Nevis, Scotland 
  3. Scafell Pike, Lake District
  4. Helvellyn, Lake District 
  5. Mam Tor, Derbyshire
  6. Ingleton Falls Trail, Lancashire  
  7. Malvern Hills, Worcestershire
  8. Brimham Rocks, North Yorkshire 
  9. West Highland Way, Scotland 
  10. Old Harry Rocks, Dorset 
Aerial – Old Harrys Rocks

Unsurprisingly, August was revealed as the busiest time of year for walkers, with December, January and February being much quieter, likely due to colder and wetter weather. That said, to help enjoy the outdoors come rain or shine, James Moody, director of Sealskinz, gives some helpful tips on how to be prepared for all types of weather.

  • ‘It’s important to keep your feet, hands and head warm and dry when outdoors at winter to avoid discomfort and illness. Investing in waterproof socks, gloves and hats for any time of year is advisable as the UK’s weather can be unpredictable.
  • ‘Many people believe the more layers, the better, but it’s more effective to have less layers made from efficient materials.
  • ‘Wool is best as it’s durable and a great insulator to help keep you warm and dry, plus it can also stay warm even when wet.
  • ‘Breathability is also important when hiking, as feet will release sweat, even in cold weather. Once your feet are wet, issues, such as blisters, numbness and frostbite may even occur. Merino wool and nylon are both very breathable and great for hiking.’, Moody adds.

Which one of these much-loved walking routes will you be taking on to beat the winter blues?

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