Eyes wide open

Memories and discoveries. Known and unknown. After 15 years in the UK, I finally decided to give it some proper attention and respect:) Obviously, before the pandemic our eyes were always on the horizon! What's out there!? There! were grass always seems greener. Selfish? Maybe, but sorry not sorry! Well, since some things are and were out of control, I made the best of what I got. It hit me when I was @ home in Latvia. Some of our plans did not work out. It felt like everything was falling apart. I came back to the UK with a mission. I will dedicate most of my time to my well being and my mental health.  Since nature and walking trails are my "thing", that's where I started. Quality research on the net. Woow, there was so much to see and do around me, which I had never paid attention to all these years. Now, it was just a matter of picking where and when, which one to start with.  First, we picked Stoodley Pike in Todmorden. If you do not have a car, it is quite a walk just to get to the climb itself. But since we are all walkers, we enjoyed every second of it. Stoodley Pike climb gives you freedom, peace, struggle with yourself and kids (if you brave enough to take them with you), motivation, all kinds of emotions, at least 3 seasons in couple of hours and finally sense of achievement. As the name gives a clue, the Pike is stunning. Our advice - pick dry, sunny day and lots of water. Lame but true!

Two weeks later. New destination - Ilkley Moor, more specific - Cow & Calf.  Named like that because, for some reason, for somebody the rocks there reminded of cow that is looking after her calf???? Who am I to judge, but climb is breathtaking. On the way there, do not forget to visit Ilkley Toy Museum. Jump in the past and remember times, when used to play with dolls and teddy bears...and not only! Back to Cow & Calf, if you brave enough, climb the calf...I tried, but had to stop midway and figure out how to get down now ?

I will just mention Yorkshire Sculpture Park. That is the place that deserves special, separate story. Art and nature and nothing else is necessary.

York, Blackpool - more for kids. I am not city person at all, but decided I cannot make my kids do climbing all the time:) they need some educational trip as well. So, we went to York. Well, I do t think I need to advertise York, but I will recommend York Cocoa House!!!! Indulge in chocolate story and tasting, never eaten that much and delicious chocolate at once, but would do it again. Needs booking in advance!!!! Blackpool - sealife, fish&chips and doughnuts. Have to be honest though, Blackpool beach did not impress me :( It felt like it was and is missing something. I know there is entertainment, food and atmosphere any time of the day and year, but it was just lacking that X factor or maybe donkeys.

Another great place, just for a "simple" walk is Leeds - Liverpool canal walk. The canal itself is 127 miles or 204 km long. One day I will walk the whole length, but this time we chose 2 miles from Bingley to Saltaire. Passing Five Rise Locks - It is what the name implies, sort of the staircase that lifts or lowers the boats travelling along the canal. Impressive and extremely interesting for kids to  understand the physics behind it. And if you lucky, nice gentleman working there will give you chance to open and close the gates. 

Anyway, it is all on catchatrip.co.uk Instagram with beautiful photos. Since the mental health is priority, we trying to catch a little positivity whenever and wherever we can. Next trip is for my football mad child - Manchester Football Museum.