We’re thrilled that Helen Skelton and North Ridge are teaming up. To celebrate this collaboration and showcase the great North Ridge products available only at selected retailers including GO Outdoors, we chatted with Helen to get the low down on her motivations, her passion for outdoor adventure, and what for her makes the outdoors unbeatable. Read our exclusive interview.
Hi Helen. Thanks for talking to us. First off, can you tell us what the outdoors means to you?
“I am just happier outside and I am learning that my kids are too. For me it’s about practicality, being able to go from school run to dog walk without an outfit overhaul. There’s no way to predict the British weather, but the North Ridge range means I don’t have to miss out on a walk just because the weather isn’t playing ball. If my kids are happy, I am happy, and if that means standing on the side of a skate park for five hours so be it. The North Ridge range combines practicality and style so I can do both. Wherever we end up after school or on weekends I am ready; confident and comfortable.”
What would your greatest day spent in the outdoors look like? What would make for an unbeatable experience outside and what has been your greatest UK adventure to date?
“My greatest day would include sun, swims and BBQs. I love The Lake District and spend a lot of time on my paddle board. I take the kids with me and they jump off and splash around in the water. I am just happier outside. It doesn’t even need to be the lake, a day spent by the river makes me a happy lady too.”
“My greatest UK adventure… I had a week in our old camper van on the Yorkshire coast. We went to Staithes, Whitby and Robin Hoods Bay. Years ago I did a cycle, swim and climb in the Scottish Highlands and chalked off a few Munros – that was pretty epic too.”
How do you make time to exercise outdoors, and why is it an important part of your day?
“Walking my dog is part of my day. It sets me up, helps my head and my hips. I throw on my black jacket and go exploring, safe in the knowledge that it’s practical when the weather is bad, but equally stylish enough to throw over gym gear.”
How do you encourage your children to connect with The Great Outdoors and what benefits do you see?
“My kids are just happier outside. They eat better and sleep better after being outside during the day and I don’t feel guilty about screen time if they have been in a tree for a few hours. They’re nicer to each other outside too. My kids just like to get muddy. As long as I have snacks I can keep mine outside for ages. We love the lakes, the Yorkshire coast and the peaks.”
You’ve previously opened up about your busy lifestyle, balancing work and family life. What have you learnt?
“Don’t compare yourself to anyone else, no one knows what happens behind closed doors. Lists and diaries are good too. If I write down things I need to do I feel like they are a weight off my brain.”
You’ve travelled so much. Where is your favourite place to go on an adventure holiday in the UK, and where is your favourite place abroad?
“I loved Cuba and South America when I visited. I had great adventures there, cycling and kayaking. I would encourage anyone to visit Cuba because it’s so interesting and different. In the UK I love the Lakes and the Yorkshire coast. I should spend more time in Cornwall but but it’s a long journey and I hate wasting time in the car!”
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