According to the AllTrail hiking navigation app, the number of hiking activities recorded in 2020 was up by over 170% compared to the previous year. The number of individual hikers also increased by over 130% in 2020. The hiking hobby has boomed during the pandemic, and it is showing no sign of slowing down.
Naturally, being forced to self-isolate at the start of the pandemic can explain the sudden increase in number. People needed an activity that would take them out of the house safely and maximise direct sunlight exposure. As such, hiking has understandably become a coping mechanism during the pandemic. Yet, vaccine distribution figures have allowed most countries to go back to social
Escaping the city stress
As life is getting back to normal, people are experiencing a new phenomenon: Urban stress. Indeed, the absence of traffic and commute during the pandemic has encouraged wildlife to come back to cities. Birds, small and larger mammals wandered through our towns, breaking the grey landscape with fresh life. Unfortunately, urban activities are now back, and we suddenly realise how loud and polluting they are. Hiking offers a unique escape away from the city. More often than not, beautiful hiking spots are just outside cities, such as the stunning Malvern Hills that inspired the Hobbit landscape. Situated just outside Worcester in England, the hills have been a favourite spot for Tolkien.
Most physical hobbies require specialist equipment and training. However, hiking can be easily accessible to all. Hiking is all about walking in nature. You can adjust your pace and trail choice to your skills and your outfit. If you fancy a quiet and digestive walk after a meal, there’s nothing wrong with walking in your everyday cashmere jumper and denim trousers. More experienced hikers can invest in shoes and gear for long and challenging trails. Yet, it’s not mandatory to enjoy the joys of hiking in nature.
Countless psychologists agree that walking is one of the most natural activities for most able-bodied individuals. Being active helps release endorphin, which reduces depression risks. Most mental health practitioners, therefore, recommend exercising to address mental health issues. Embracing a natural and easy activity makes it easier for individuals to regain control over their mental and physical health.
We are still suckers for a good Insta-shot
While it’s not to say that we do everything for a good picture, most people will make conscious decisions about what to display in their social profiles. It makes no doubt that photos of your hobby are likely to receive more likes if it’s hiking compared to spending an afternoon watching TV. Walking allows you to find beautiful sceneries that are not only a delightful sight but also an Instagram winner shot. Why so? Because a hiking shot is peaceful, inspiring, and dream-worthy. It’s all about showing all the beautiful things around you.
Hiking is regaining its old popularity back, and it’s a surprise to nobody! No other hobby is as accessible and calming as taking a walk in nature. Are you ready to see what goodness the trail has in store for you?