Five Reasons why you should Walk in Autumn

By Melody Evans

As summer gradually draws to an end here in the UK, many walkers tend to store their boots away for another year, choosing to wait out the colder months before re-emerging in the spring. However, the autumn season is arguably just as good a time of year in which to explore the Great British countryside. Here at Contours, we want to celebrate the season of colour and highlight all the reasons why you should enjoy a walk in the autumn.

Here are our top five reasons to walk during autumn:

1. The weather is coolerUntitled-1 (35).jpg

While most walkers choose to enjoy the warmth of summer, the idea of walking for miles in the hot weather isn’t for everyone. By walking during the cooler autumn season, not only do you tend to avoid the discomfort of sweating and insect bites, but you can also rely on the crisp, fresh air and bracing breeze to help you feel refreshed and alert on your journey. There is also something very comforting about wrapping up warm for a brisk walk in the autumn, while the cool weather also makes cosying up by the fire at the end of the day all the more satisfying.

“I really like all the colours in the trees and the changing weather; one minute it is wonderfully sunny, and the next minute it’s all windy!” – Becky, Receptionist

2. The trails are quieterUntitled-1 (36).jpg

One of the biggest draws of a walking holiday for our customers is the opportunity to escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life and enjoy a quiet break in the UK countryside. During the summer months however, the most popular walking trails can become quite busy, which can detract from the sense of tranquillity sought after by most. By contrast, during the autumn months the trails are much less frequented, allowing you to enjoy your walk at your own pace and explore those areas that may otherwise have attracted large crowds, such as at castles and other famous monuments.

In addition to there being fewer people on the trails, the availability of accommodation along the way is also generally better, meaning you are more likely to secure the best-quality B&Bs for your overnight stays.

“I like visiting popular summer locations during the cooler months, so I can enjoy exploring without the usual hustle and bustle.” – Alex, Database Manager

3. The landscapes are beautiful
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Autumn is known as the season of colour for a good reason! The shorter days mean the sun remains low in the sky for much of the day, creating a dramatic low lighting effect across the Great British countryside. Combine this with the forests erupting in fiery bursts of red, orange and bronze, the vibrant carpets of purple heather flourishing across the moors and the mysterious morning mists floating across the valleys, and the result is a fantastic range of awe-inspiring autumnal landscapes to admire and photograph at your leisure.

“I love the beautiful autumn light, especially as the sun is setting and you are walking home to settle down for the night; the colours are always that bit brighter and deeper then.” – Karen, Director

4. The seasonal fare is delicious
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The autumn season in the UK is traditionally a time when farmers complete their harvests and many plants bear fruit, meaning there is plenty of delicious local produce to enjoy during your travels. Some walkers like to go foraging while they walk in the autumn, as hedgerows are often packed with ripe berries around this time of year, with various types of nuts and seeds also available for keen foragers to find.

Various places around the UK also host a range of events and festivals celebrating the year’s harvest; those exploring the Great British countryside in autumn are able to experience these festivities first-hand, with some rural towns and villages marking the occasion with traditional rituals dating back hundreds of years!

“Squirrels burying acorns and mushrooms in woodlands; childhood memories of playing with sycamore tree helicopters and conkers; spider webs glistening with dew and blackberry picking – all these things make autumn great.” – Christine, Customer Service Manager

5. The wildlife is abundant
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As the weather starts to turn cooler in the UK, we begin to see a vast array of animals going about their preparations for the oncoming winter, offering plenty of opportunities to witness unique wildlife displays. Not only are various woodland creatures busy foraging for food, but the autumn season is also the time where red deer stags fight for mating rights, birds migrate in their thousands, Atlantic salmon leap upstream to spawn and grey seals head to the shorelines to give birth, making this the perfect time of year for wildlife enthusiasts to head out and enjoy a walk in the countryside.

“My favourite thing about autumn is seeing the British wildlife transitioning, such as migrating birds arriving, rutting deer and new plants and fungi emerging.” – Rebecca, Database Team

Originally published 20/07/18

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