Kathi Kamleitner – from the Scotland travel blog watchmesee.com – is one of the only women I know who does extended camping and hiking trips solo. So, I asked her on the podcast to see if she could convince us (me?) to take a hiking trip ourself. Listen (or read on) to hear her tops tips for anyone who wants to explore the world, or their country, by hiking solo.
We don’t just talk about hiking solo though – we cover Iceland, the cost of hiking, and why you should see popular places off season.
Kathi and I also talk about making a new place home, our tops tips for making friends in a new place and where to go in Scotland beyond the Isle of Skye and Edinburgh.
I’ve learned what bothying is, and a few documentaries I should check out which cover women doing epic things around the world. But mainly, listen to Kathi’s episode to find out how you can get out there and get hiking, whether it’s just for a few hours, or even a few weeks.
“Statistically it’s more dangerous to live with your partner than it is to go hiking by yourself”
Top tips for hiking solo
(more details on watchmesee.com – LOADS of info on there!)
Kathi hiked 155 miles with around 20kg on her back, for TWO WEEKS!
1. Be prepared
“Your back hurts the first four days and then, it’s just there. If you get a good backpack you carry all the weight on your hips, you don’t have it on your shoulders. And it moves with your movement so it’s almost like you’re not carrying it.”
– Make sure you have all the right equipment – here’s a list of vegan hiking boots to help you in your quest.
2. Don’t worry about what other people think
“Is it safe, what do your parents think, aren’t you going to get bored – as if a 30 year old woman couldn’t hike by themselves.”
3. Trust yourself
“Know how strong you are. Your body can carry you so far. Having those experiences and being allowed to be proud of yourself, gives you a lot of confidence.”
4. Don’t be scared
“Think about all the benefits you can get from it and what are the chances of you having an amazing empowering experience, and what are the chances of meeting a psycho who wants to harm you? When you weigh those two up you can gain so much from having these experiences.”
5. Don’t negatively compare yourself
“Find someone you aspire to and who can teach you the next step and the skills you need”
Details of Kathi’s hiking retreat
Women only hiking retreat around Glencoe in Scotland. You’ll go on two guided hikes.
The price includes:
– Shared accommodation at Blackwater Hostel in Kinlochleven (2 nights in 4-bed en-suite rooms)
– Communal meals: 2x breakfast, 2x dinner
– Guided hikes with Girls on Hills (all-day Saturday, until ~4pm on Sunday)
– Map material
– Evening sessions on route planning, kit preparation, personal reflection and goal setting
“Hiking doesn’t always have to be this crazy adventure.”
“Having a hot bowl of chips would really be a reward at the end of the day.”
Documentaries Kathi mentions
The story of the first ever all-female crew to enter the Whitbread Round the World Race in 1989.
Dutch 14-year-old Laura Dekker became the youngest person to single-handedly circumnavigate the globe, in 2012.
Here’s an excerpt and you can click through to the full documentary.
Alone Through Iran
Kristina Paltén, a lone Swedish woman, began her run through Iran on September 5th 2015.
She was to become the first woman ever to run the 1144 miles across Iran.
My post Kathi and I were talking about: Solo Travel is a Feminist Issue
Also, Cycling from Ho Chi Minh City to Hanoi: 700km in 10 Days