Unknown treks: 10 off the beaten trail adventures

unknown treks -swedenSander van der Werf/Shutterstock

From remote deserts to polar escapes, these unknown treks will get you far off the beaten trail

I spent 10 years living in London, riding the crowded tube to work, fighting for space with those around me and standing in queues at bus stops, supermarkets, anywhere really – I am British after all.

Naturally, this inspired daydreams of escaping it all and running off to the wilderness with only my backpack, tent, camping stove and a handful of freeze-dried meals.

22 interesting facts about K2

K2 from ConcordiaAtlas & Boots

We share the most interesting facts about K2, gathered from years of reading, writing and dreaming about this notorious mountain

Rising from the Baltoro Glacier in the heart of the Karakoram is K2, one of Earth’s most remarkable mountains. Revered in the mountaineering world, the pyramidal peak is the ultimate challenge for climbers.

The world’s elite alpinists have attempted its treacherous slopes. Several have conquered the summit, but many have lost their lives.

Everest vs K2 base camp: which trek is right for you?

everest vs k2 base camp lead new

Everest vs K2 base camp – what’s the difference? We compare the two classic treks

Since the first successful ascent of Mount Everest in 1953, followed by K2 in 1954, the Himalayas and its satellite ranges have become far more accessible to trekkers. The 4,000km crescent of mountains that stretches from Kyrgyzstan to Burma was once solely the domain of professional mountaineers.

Best mountaineering movies: 25 must-see cliffhangers

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Our carefully curated list of the best mountaineering movies ever made

Recently, I re-watched one of my favourite mountaineering movies: Everest.

Historically, even the best mountaineering films have struggled to bridge the gap between climbing documentary and Hollywood blockbuster.

However, Everest – released in 2015 and starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Josh Brolin – managed to please both thrill-seeking moviegoers and mountaineers alike (unless you’re Jon Krakauer of course).

Best treks in Pakistan: 5 great adventures

K2 K2 base camp trek

We take a look at the best treks in Pakistan, from classic base camp journeys to snowy high pass odysseys

Having just returned from the K2 base camp trek in Pakistan with my interest in the Karakoram well and truly stoked, I thought I’d explore some additional hiking itineraries for my next trip to this beautiful country.

K2 base camp trek: a walk among giants in the Karakoram

K2 base camp trek

The K2 base camp trek is a stunning journey to the foot of a legendary mountain in the Pakistani Karakoram

The K2 base camp trek through the mighty Karakoram mountains of Pakistan is one of the world’s finest high-altitude treks. Earlier this year an opportunity arose to join Lost Horizon Tours and Treks on a trek to K2 base camp combined with a technical crossing of the Gondogoro La Pass.

Trekking the Arctic Circle Trail: a dream goes up in smoke

trekking the arctic circle trail lead image with hut and lake

Trekking the Arctic Circle Trail in Greenland has long been a dream of mine. A dream I came tantalisingly close to fulfilling but for a freak natural event

I wanted to begin this post by triumphantly announcing that I had finished trekking the Arctic Circle Trail in Greenland – but I can’t, for my trek ended in bitter disappointment. It (quite literally) left a stale taste in my mouth and gave rise to a cloud of unanswerable questions; a maddening maelstrom of ‘what ifs’ and ‘maybes’ to lament and regret.

Best climbing documentaries: 25 tall stories

The best climbing documentaries showcase the world’s finest climbers pitting their skills against the world’s toughest climbs

Recently, we watched two great climbing documentaries: the acclaimed Free Solo (2018) at our local cinema and then The Dawn Wall (2018) on Netflix.

Both films focus on attempts on Yosemite’s El Capitan via different routes and using different climbing styles.

While Alex Honnold’s free solo of El Capitan was perhaps the most vertigo-inducing film we’ve ever seen, it was the human story behind Tommy Caldwell in The Dawn Wall that we found more compelling.

Eight-thousanders: the 14 highest peaks in the world

Nanga Parbat was once known as "killer mountain"Witthawas_Siri/Shutterstock

The eight-thousanders are so ferocious that only 40 people have summited them all. We explain why they bewitch climbers all across the globe

Most boys grow out of their fascination with mountains and the great outdoors. Those that do not usually end up on the side of a mountain, asking ‘what the hell am I doing here?’ But, as the saying goes, the best alpinists have the worst memories and so they venture once again into the ether.

Best treks in Nepal: our top 10 picks

The turquoise lakes of the Gokyo ValleyOlga Danylenko/Shutterstock

We take a look at the best treks in Nepal, from high-altitude routes with classic mountain scenery to new and remote trans-Himalayan journeys

While still fresh from my Everest base camp trek with G Adventures – and my interest in Himalayan trekking well and truly piqued – I thought I’d explore some alternative itineraries for my next trip to Nepal.

With magnificent peaks, glacial valleys and charming trailside teahouses, the world’s highest mountain range is home to some of the best trekking on the planet. Beyond the legendary summits are Sherpa villages, picturesque forests and glacial moraines, all at their best beneath Nepal’s brilliant morning light or blissful evening alpenglow.

Q&A: tips for trekking to Everest base camp

Our tips for trekking to Everest base camp, generated from the many questions our readers sent in

Before, during and after my Everest base camp trek in Nepal, we received dozens of questions about the experience via email and social media. We’ve collated them below in a detailed Q&A that includes all our tips for trekking to Everest base camp.

Everest base camp kit list: all you need for a successful trek

The summit of Mount Everest seen from base campAtlas & Boots

My comprehensive Everest base camp kit list includes everything you’ll need to reach the foot of the highest mountain in the world

Having just returned from my Everest base camp trek in Nepal, I thought it would be useful to share my entire Everest base camp kit list as a point of reference for future trekkers.

I joined a G Adventures 15-day trek to base camp, which includes 12 days of trekking: eight to ascend to base camp and four to descend back to Lukla.

Everest base camp trek: to the heart of the high Himalayas

The Everest Memorial at Chukpi LharaAtlas & Boots

The Everest base camp trek in Nepal takes trekkers to the foot of the highest and most captivating mountain in the world

My bookshelves are filled with mountaineering books, my wardrobe is stuffed with outdoor clothes and I spend an inordinate number of nights under canvas and even more of my days on hiking trails. As such, it was almost criminal that I hadn’t yet seen Nepal.

This year, I finally put that to rest with G Adventures on a 15-day trek to Everest base camp.

Hiking Table Mountain: 10 tips to get you to the top

Hiking Table Mountain isn’t a walk in the park like one might hope. We share our tips for getting to the top

Hiking Table Mountain is a rite of passage for visitors to Cape Town. The iconic behemoth defines the ‘Mother City’ in the same way Rio has a harbour, New York has a statue and San Francisco has a bridge.

This mountain is said to be one of the oldest in the world. Its formation began circa 280 million years ago and some of its rocks date back 600 million years (long before the Himalayas).

Highest mountains in the Yorkshire Dales

Approaching Pen-Y-GhentPete Stuart/Shutterstock

The highest mountains in the Yorkshire Dales are home to some of England’s finest and wildest scenery, all of it ripe for hiking

Covering 2,179km2 of countryside, Yorkshire Dales National Park showcases some of England’s best outdoor landscapes. The park’s glacial valleys are defined by a unique terrain of high heather moorland, rolling hills and dramatic waterfalls, all criss-crossed with miles of dry stonewalls and delightful villages.

5 off-the-beaten treks to Machu Picchu

Huayna Picchu is one of the most beautiful mountains in the worldEmperorcosar/Shutterstock

We take a look at five alternative treks to Machu Picchu, a world away from the busy classic route

Machu Picchu may well be a bucket list cliché, but there’s ample justification for why so many visitors flock to this glorious citadel perched high in the Andean mountains.

Trekking to Machu Picchu through the Sacred Valley is profoundly gratifying and remains a must for nearly every visitor to Peru. The Incan masterpiece is spectacularly located and, once reached, lives up to every expectation of its glorious emerald peaks and terraced ruins.

Driving the hairpinned Sani Pass to Lesotho

interesting facts about Lesotho Sani PassVAIZ HA; CC BY 2.0

Sani Pass is said to be one of the most dangerous mountain passes in the world. We decided to drive it on our overnight tour to Lesotho

Sometimes, I feel jealous of past explorers − not grandees like Cook or Magellan but everyday travellers that went somewhere and saw something not yet covered by Lonely Planet or indeed Atlas & Boots.

I imagine sultry Indian summers with endless corridors of uncharted possibility or China’s Hallelujah mountains, misty and deserted, and think how magical those times must have been.