The Story

Having a rest at Hawkridge whilst out hiking

Matthew Arnold

Web Developer / Self Published Author

DOB: 2nd May 1984

Place of Birth: Exeter

Job: Web Developer

I had not appreciated the great outdoors until I had the pleasure of an experience that really captivated me. In 2011, a group of friends and I took part in the Great Glen Canoe Trail, a 60 mile paddle across Scotland. Starting in Fort William, the trail finished at the other side of the country in Inverness. We traversed through breath-taking Scottish scenery with mountains on one side and dense forests on the other. We also navigated a variety of canals and lochs, including the mighty Loch Ness. It was here, in this adventure, that I became truly captivated with getting out and exploring more of our beautiful surroundings.

Living in Britain we are truly gifted with having such varied and beautiful landscapes, something most of us no doubt take for granted. Along with a rich heritage of bygone years, there is an abundance of places to see and things to experience.

From the Scottish Highlands to the distinctive welsh mountains and the now serene canals that crisscross the country. We have prehistoric settlements dating back thousands of years, picture-postcard villages, bleak rugged moorland and dramatic cliff faces. There is so much to be captivated by the splendour of Britain’s history and countryside.

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Walking is also one of the most natural things in the world; something we all do every single day. There are so many benefits in going for a long walk; it can create such a stimulating and positive impact on our mind, body and soul.

With that said, what better way is there to explore these wonderful landscapes than by peacefully meandering through these delightful places using rights of way that intersect across the land. In the mainland UK, there is an estimated 149,300 miles of footpaths, public rights of way and bridleways, many of which link up to form long distance walking trails – of which there are over 1,100 recognised trails in the UK.

The Birth of Trail Wanderer

In 2017, I set myself a challenge: I decided to investigate an area closer to home. I set my sights on walking the 100 mile long-distance path named the Two Moors Way, a trail spanning nearly the entire breadth of Devon. I chose to walk the reverse of the traditional route. My experience heading this direction led me to create a guide to cater for other people who also wanted to walk the route in reverse. This is how the first Trail Wanderer guide book was born. From here, I produced a variety of other guides that cover other breath-taking trails through the countryside.

I do hope these guides will aid you in discovering new places like it has me.

Matt Arnold.