Thanks to the AliKats’ Dream of Mountains Challenge, I had the excuse to mentally escape to the mountains, and lose myself in the reasons why I love the mountains so much.
Anyone who knows me, knows that the mountains are a part of me and something I’m so passionate about. My ‘chasing winter’ tattoo on my forearm is my daily reminder of incredible times, not only from the past, but ones I can make in the future too.
This year has been difficult with the uncertainty of knowing when we’ll get back to the mountains again, but I know it is tougher for those who rely on us to be able to get out there too.
It took me some time to process these thoughts, as I travelled back through incredible memories, while I mentally planned my dream trips, but in the end I narrowed my thoughts down to 10 reasons why I love the mountains so much.
Spoiler alert: this will be really cheesy, but here we go…
1. The memories
The mountains have always been a part of me, from strapping into my first plastic Mickey Mouse skis as a toddler when visiting family in Scotland, through to months spent in Canada, New Zealand, Japan and more.
My husband and I met on a snowboarding trip in Italy, our daughter learned to snowboard age 3 in Morzine, and even those days spent sharing the love of the mountains with those who visited the snow show in London, they’re all mountain memories close to my heart.
It sounds so cheesy, but I know I’m lucky to have visited and lived in some incredible places and I dream of making even more of these memories with my little girl too.
2. The freedom
There is nothing like the freedom you feel standing at the top of a mountain, whether your ankles are being brushed by the wild flowers of summer, with the warm sun on your cheeks, or whether you’re cruising through the freshest of powder.
With the fresh air in your lungs and the most epic of views, the mountains always make me feel so free.
3. The exhilaration
Snowboarding will always be a part of me and that ‘snow stoke’ is just unforgettable. Whether you’re on skis, snowboards, a parachute or enjoying one of the many incredible experiences the mountains can offer, the adrenaline rush is just intoxicating, leaving you wanting more.
4. The people
From the friends you make along the way to the local man walking his dog through the mountain paths, everyone you meet in the mountains is just inspirational and beautiful, inside and out.
All over the world, I’ve met the friendliest, most welcoming of people, many of who I still count as my closest friends, and who have inspired me to live my life differently too.
5. The views
The views from the mountains are just breathtaking – a far cry from Leicester City Centre, and really make you feel like you have escaped reality.
Whether you’re working and living in the mountains or there for a break, you just feel in awe every single day about the stunning surroundings, wherever you are in the world.
6. The seasons
Whatever season you’re in, the mountains are an incredible place to be, from the fresh breeze of the spring and the flowing rivers of the summer, to the turn of the autumn leaves, right through to the sparkle of the fresh powder snow.
Each season also holds its own incredible vibe, with different people visiting, different activities, different mountain smells in the air and different places to meet, however every single one is an amazing experience.
7. The activities
All year round, there really is so much to do in the mountains, whether you look to enjoy mountain biking, hiking, exploring and the lakes in the summer through to all the joys of skiing and snowboarding in the winter.
Wherever you head in the world, there is always so much to explore and do, from relaxing activities through to keeping adrenaline-junkies pumped!
8. The food
Wherever you visit in the world, the mountain food is incredible. Everywhere has their own incredible delicacy, with local dishes to try, and a whole new level of food to explore. From warming up with steaming noodle soup in Japan through to melting fondue in France, you’re never going to go hungry when you visit the mountains, not to mention the fresh treats awaiting you if you head to a catered chalet too!
9. The travel
My passion for the mountains has taken me to some epic places, from snaking through the trees in the softest Japanese powder snow through to road tripping in campervans across New Zealand.
There isn’t one single place I don’t dream of going back to and although I don’t work in snowboarding anymore, nor have the ability to spend weeks/months of the season in the mountains, my heart will always take me back to the mountains when I can.
Every place I’ve visited has their own culture, their own mountain traditions, their own views and their own people, making the adventures of my past something I’ve truly learned from, and making me yearn for more too, leading me on to….
10. The dreaming
So my cheesy last line of my last point leads me on to my dreaming. Every day I dream of the mountains, but this is especially hard around autumn time when the fresh teasers drop for the new season’s shred movies and the snow shows come back to town.
Since I was a teenager, autumn would give me itchy feet for the snow, that chance to meet up with snow buddies again at the snowboard movie premieres or events in London, while plotting my adventures for the season.
This seems a lifetime ago, but it doesn’t stop the dreaming, when we’re sitting at home getting nostalgic with the latest (and throwback) snow sections on Youtube, scrolling our mountain friends’ accounts on Insta, or scraping the first frost from the car.
It may be a while, but we’ll make it back to the mountains, whatever it takes. We’ll breathe in that fresh air, feel that snow stoke and make those memories again.
Stay safe and thanks for reading.