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Why explorer and presenter Paul Rose has fallen in love with the Yorkshire Wolds Way

PUBLISHED: 00:00 26 April 2017

Paul Rose walking the Wolds Way for a BBC Two programme

Paul Rose walking the Wolds Way for a BBC Two programme

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‘The Wolds Way is unlike anywhere else in the world’

He has commanded an Antarctic research station, been the first across Greenland ice caps, led the way up a number of remote mountains and dived in clear blue seas all over the world but East Yorkshire holds a special place in the heart of adventurer Paul Rose.

It may not have the unexplored wilds or uncharted wildernesses of most of the places he visits, but his latest jaunt opened Paul’s eyes to the wonders of the Wolds Way.

Speaking to Yorkshire Life from the remote Pacific island of Tristan da Cunha, where he was filming another expedition for the BBC, Paul said: ‘I have spent a lifetime hunting out the last wilds, the challenging places and big scale adventures – I can’t stop myself. But when I did the Wolds Way I found it unbelievably rewarding. There were real surprises across every road and around every corner. I thoroughly enjoyed it.’

Paul followed the 79-mile National Trail, which stretches from the Humber Bridge to Filey, for a two-part BBC documentary.

Thirty-five years since it officially opened, the Wolds Way is one of the least-trampled landscapes of the UK and Paul added: ‘I think we are probably all guilty of overlooking what’s on our doorstep. The Wolds Way is unlike anywhere else in the world, and I’m so surprised at how little is known about it. I’m used to gruelling expeditions in far-flung places but exploring the Yorkshire Wolds Way was the most refreshing adventure I’ve done in years.

‘There’s a surprise around every corner. It’s accessible and easy to walk, and the views are just breath-taking. I was in awe. It’s perfect for all types of walkers and it is definitely in my top 10 favourite landscapes in the world. I really hope our documentary encourages more people to explore this unsung gem.’

Commissioned for BBC Two, Yorkshire Wolds Way is part of the BBC’s offering to celebrate Hull UK City of Culture 2017.

‘I can’t stop myself going to wild places and a lot of my journeys start at Hull or Grimsby with ships for the British Antarctic Survey,’ Paul said.

‘I love walking, it’s my main connection to nature so when this was suggested I didn’t need to think about it. I said yes instantly. It is probably Britain’s least travelled national trail and I think it is arguably the most rewarding.

‘Having walked the Wolds Way for the programme, I will be coming back to walk it again in the summer. It’s not very physically or mentally demanding and the route has that relaxed feel. The Three Peaks and the Pennine Way are the best known walks in Yorkshire but the Wolds Way is proof that they are not the only ones.’

Along the route Paul took on a few challenges, including rowing a vintage boat across the Humber, moth collecting the Victorian way at Nunburnholme and learning how to ride a penny farthing near South Cave. ‘I was scared to death but I loved it,’ he said. ‘I have since bought one. It’s in my living room now.’

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