One of the many societies that University offers is the Outdoor Society. Every Sunday, the society visits local national parks. These include: The North York Moors, The Yorkshire Dales, The Peak District and The North Pennines. They run two different length walks; the first is a medium walk, approximately 8-10km and includes a lovely pub lunch halfway into the walk. The second is a long walk that is approximately 15km, but you need to bring a packed lunch. This society accommodates both avid walkers and those who are not too confident in their long-distance walking abilities.
Joining the Outdoor Society
The weekly walks are affordable and accessible to all students. As the society is not classified as a ‘sport’, you don’t need to purchase a gold or black tier fee. Therefore, you are solely paying for the weekly walks. If you are a member, it currently costs £9.50 per walk, and an extra £3 on the day for non-members. Membership for the whole year costs £15, so it’s worth buying if you go on five or more walks in the year. We meet outside the Roger Kirk Centre by the benches at 8:45am on Sunday. Yes, I know – it’s super early for a weekend – but definitely worth it, I promise! We head to our chosen destination at 9am and aim to get back to the University by 6pm. The walks are guided by trained walk leaders, and the ticket cost pays for the transport there and back.
Inside the Outdoor Society
This society is super friendly! You can come on a walk and talk to a wide variety of students. From home to international students, undergraduates to postgraduates and sometimes even lecturers! One of the things I love about going on these walks (apart from the gorgeous scenery and amazing views) is the fact that everyone puts away their technology. We spend 4-5 hours talking to new people and enjoying being outside in the natural environment. These weekly walks de-stress me too. You become detached from the centre of university and tend to forget about the looming deadlines, and all the reading you have to do for the upcoming week.
It’s not just walking
These weekly walks are not the only thing this society offers. They have several socials such as bar crawls, quiz nights and also society meals that usually occur at the end of term. I find these socials super fun because they usually have themes based around walking, but also don’t always include alcohol! The society also does weekend trips to places such as Snowdonia and The Lake District. We recently visited Buttermere in The Lake District. We stayed in a YHA Hostel for two nights, and walked up peaks such as Haystacks, Dale Head and Robinson. The whole trip cost £65 and it included two cooked breakfasts and one dinner. The food was delicious.
The Outdoor Society creates affordable and accessible trips locally and nationally, and if travelling interests you, I would definitely recommend it.