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  • Stefan Morrocco @morroccomedia

Happy Mondays: Week 6 - Ben Vrackie

Happy Mondays: Week 6 - Ben Vrackie and Cyclo-Cross Microadventure

My last walk up Ben Vrackie, the hill that overlooks Pitlochry in Perthsire, was a much sadder affair. I'd just split up with my girlfriend at the time and needed to get some head space. The slow wander, time to think and stunning scenery helped me get some perspective on the situation. That microadventure back then really helped with my mental well being, and I think that is one of the most important aspects of microadventures, that time away from the day to day challenges of life, interjecting some novelty and interest that awakens the senses and helps you be present and not think about the what-ifs and buts.

My trip up Ben Vrackie was a much happier one this time, despite the fact that the weather closed in and I couldn't see anything from the top. However, the views are just one of the benefits of climbing a hill, when you get them, which is why you appreciate them when you do get them. The other benefits of climbing a hill or any other microadventure are the endorphins from the exertion, the fitness benefits from the walk or activity, the time away from the digital world, space to think, being present and mindful of all the experiences around you and having time to put everything in perspective. It really does ground you. This is the main reason I'm doing these Happy Mondays microadventures. It's to ensure I remain happy.

Ben Vrackie isn't the hardest hill to get up, it's not that long a walk/ run, it's not challenging in a technical sense, but all that is good, because sometimes you just need that easy microadventure to give you time to philosophise and not be worrying about the mental and physical challenge you are doing. I'm a massive fan of getting out and just thinking, and invariably, I come up with my best ideas and solutions to problems during these times. Recently, that thinking time was found when I walked my son in the pram to get him to sleep (that's where all the Wild About Argyll ideas came from), but now the wee microadventures I'm doing are offering that time and I've been developing a whole load of filming ideas - watch this space. Next time I need some good thinking time, I'll be back up Ben Vrackie.

So, get up Ben Vrackie, or go on any easy microadventure and give your head some space and come up with ingenious ideas!

And once you've had that time to think and problem solve, go have some fun!!

I've got a new cyclo cross bike, so I went and explored the mountainbike trails in Tay Forest Park, just behind Pitlochry, after finding them on Trailforks. I'll definitely be back with the bouncy bike to have even more fun. It was a bit of a challenge on the CX bike, but a fun challenge. There's great MTB tracks popping up all over Perthshire, I can't wait to get my big bike back from the cycle shop and do some proper mountainbiking!

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