Sarah Allard - My Yorkshire weekend
PUBLISHED: 00:00 07 June 2014
Sarah Allard, co-founder of Lost Earth Adventures in York, on why she relishes wild weekends
The weekend has no set schedule and I like it that way. Richard, my husband, and I moved to York five years ago (I’m from Canada; he’s from Hertfordshire), drawn by the big hills of the Dales, the vast expanse of the moors and some of the country’s best gritstone rock climbing crags right on our doorstep.
Yorkshire seemed the obvious choice for us. As someone who feels best and most alive in the outdoors, I couldn’t have asked for a better place to call home.
Although I’m often working, the luxury of owning an outdoor adventure company means that on any given Saturday or Sunday you’re most likely to find me enjoying and exploring the wilds of the Yorkshire countryside. Having my husband as my business partner also means I get the added bonus of sharing the fun with him.
Saturdays are busy as we usually have activities running all over the county. After a cup of coffee (essential) and a quick, easy breakfast, we hit the road. Abseiling and climbing at Brimham Rocks, riding single-track bike trails near Sutton Bank and Helmsley, guiding to the summits of Yorkshire’s three highest peaks – Ingleborough, Pen-Y-Ghent and Whernside – or getting wet as we scramble our way through gorges in Nidderdale, anything can be on our adventurous agenda.
The great thing about my job is that I get to share amazing experiences with people from all different backgrounds, from all over the country. I recently helped a breast cancer survivor to complete the Yorkshire Three Peak’s Challenge with an affable, dedicated group of her closest friends and family. This was a truly memorable experience, although every weekend is always fresh, fun and adventurous.
After a hearty day out, cooking seems like the last thing on the menu. In York, you’ll find us at the House of the Trembling Madness, where the eclectic décor, craft beers and platters are hard to beat. And the conversation and banter that follows with other patrons is always interesting.
On Sunday, if we’re not working it’s a toss-up between a lazy day of cappuccinos and brunch (31 Castlegate in York is a favourite) or getting back on the trail to work off last night’s indulgences.
Yorkshire is so diverse it would take a lifetime to discover all it has to offer. We make a point of trying new places and discovering new trails, whether mountain biking, rock climbing or even finding Yorkshire’s best meat pies (they’re at the Station Inn at Ribblehead Viaduct, if you’re wondering).
Earlier this year, Richard and I found ourselves scrambling up the very wet and wild Strans Gill, tucked away in a quiet corner of the Yorkshire Dales. It was pure fun, although the weather was definitely not on our side. It’s these hidden gems that we can’t wait to share with people who want to join the adventure.
When Sunday night rolls round, it’s back in the comfort of our home, relaxing, cooking and toasting the end of a beautiful weekend. n
To find out more about Lost Earth Adventures’ activity days in Yorkshire, as well as their adventure holidays in Thailand, Laos and Nepal, go to lostearthadventures.co.uk.