Summer’s here and any excuse will do to jump into your Ducato-based motorhome and head off to discover a variety of different places... especially if your ulterior motive is to do some healthy physical activity!
Trekking, hiking and nature trail walking. What kind of route suits you best?
Let’s find out together.
If you like long walks in naturalsurroundings, with itineraries lasting several days and an overnight stay away from home, then this is the right activity for you!
The concept of trekking, which has developed in recent decades, derives from the English word 'to trek', which means to make a long, slow journey, often in the middle of nature, and with a few minor difficulties to tackle.
In the more western European countries, such as Italy, France and Spain, this concept is increasingly associated with hiking, a less demanding activity that lasts no longer than a day, and is therefore easier to approach for less experienced walkers. In the English-speaking world, however, and particularly in the United States and the northern Europeancountries, the word ‘trekking’ is used in its most original sense, i.e. to indicate an exploratory journey that can be made either on foot or by bicycle.
Trekking and hiking are becoming increasingly popular for their ability to transport people to places isolated from the hectic pace of the rat race, thus allowing them not only to slow down their physical rhythms, but also, and above all, to recharge their mental batteries. Walking to think, walking to meet other people, but also walking to spend time with yourself.
Many of the places on these routes are not easy to reach without your own means of transport, and we know that, on a trip of this kind, the journey is just as important as the destination. Travelling in your Ducato motorhomeas you explore the surrounding areas and enjoy watching the sun rise or set from otherwise unobtainable locations, will make the memory of your trip truly unique and unrepeatable
What to put in your backpack:
• Trekking boots, specially designed to ensure grip on the ground and comfort during long treks.
• Socks suitable for walking, essential for avoiding the dreaded blisters.
• Breathable, waterproof jacket and (long) trousers made from technical membranes such as Gore-Tex to protect you from bad weather and allow your skin to breathe on fine days.
• A water bottle and some food to stay hydrated and restore your energy.
• A torch, in case of long walks lasting until late in the evening.
• A mini first aid kit to ensure you are prepared for anything.
• Hiking poles, to take the weight of your body and your backpack off your arms.
• A sleeping bag for overnight stays along the route, if required.
• A camera, for documenting your fantastic trip!
Nature Trail Walking
If you are always looking around, curious about your surroundings, adore nature and enjoy good company, then a healthy nature trail walk is the right activity for you. The term comes from the Latin ‘excurrere’, meaning to run outside, and it refers to a trip organised for a scientific or tourism-related purpose. Precisely because of its original meaning, nature trail walking is an activity that is often done in groups and, increasingly today, it is practised by entire families, including those with very young children.
It is the first step towards trekking precisely because it involves a simple walk immersed in nature, following a trail that is often signposted by accredited organisations.
This kind of walk lasts for less than a day and is a slow, calm activity, in which the aim is to understand and learn about the culture of the area in which it takes place. In this way, the physical activity aspect of the walk almost takes a back seat, merging with the passion for nature that becomes the main driving force behind each walk.
What to put in your backpack:
In addition to a few items also used in trekking, since nature trail walking is less strenuous, it’s a good idea to carry a lighter backpack so that you can enjoy your walk.
• A spare pair ofwool-blend socks, as your legs should always be protected!
• An anorak or windcheater.
• A fleece to protect you from sudden temperature changes.
• Hat and sun cream.
• A water bottle and some food.
• A small towel, always useful when it’s hot.
Ready to set off on your next nature trail walk accompanied by your Ducato motorhome?
Contrary to what many people think, this term is not a synonym of trekking. Hiking, which derives directly from the verb 'to hike', indicates a walk in the open air, in a short space of time, sometimes just a few hours, during which significant climbs and differences in elevation are encountered. This type of activity is more technical than nature trail walking, as the focus of interest shifts from the landscape to the technique used.
The difference is very subtle: what really changes is the length of the route and, above all, the type of approach to the route and the experience itself.
There are different types of hiking:
• Mountain Hiking: practised in the mountains, lasting one day and with routes of varying difficulty;
• Nature Hiking: this includes all those routes that present various differences in elevation but are not necessarily in the mountains;
• Fast Hiking: a type of hiking that requires a faster pace and considerable physical effort;
• Snow Hiking: as the term itself suggests, it is practised in winter on snowy paths.
These are relatively quick hikes, which can be completed in a day, if not in a few hours, and which will allow you to breathe in the nature that surrounds you and return to your Ducato-based motorhome tired yet with your batteries completely recharged. And what could be better, after such an experience, than to relax in the shade of your motorhome and watch the sun setting
What to put in your backpack:
The list is pretty similar to the previous ones, but there are some differences related to the duration of the activity.
• A change of clothing, for all kinds of emergencies.
• A small, strong rope.
• A multi-purpose knife.
• Sunglasses, sun cream and a hat to protect yourself from the sun's most aggressive rays.
Here’s a tip:
Precisely because these activities can present different levels of difficulty, ensure you are physically and mentally fit before you begin. These sports respectively require an extensive physical effort and a great deal of stamina.
Whether you are the trekking type, an inquisitive nature trail walker or choose to challenge yourself with a hiking trip, one thing is certain:your Ducato-based motorhome will always be revved up and ready to accompany you on your adventures, whatever the route you choose to take!