A brief list of things I’ve learned while hiking

A list that I’ll update regularly when I think of something new to add.

–  My wife, Odile, is the perfect person to hike with.

– Hiking clothes made of merino wool are great as they never smell (thanks Daniel O’Connor, ace kayak guide, for clueing me in).

– Yogurt for breakfast is definitely a no-no just before hiking.

– You can keep Alpine horseflies at bay with lemon eucalyptus essential oil (tried and tested on the Lechweg which had the worst and most persistent ones I’ve ever come across).

– Never force your kids to go hiking with you. An overly enthusiastic father can put them off it for life.

– Going up is tough, coming down is a lot worse.

– Do not drink (alcohol) and hike. Same goes for kayaking and open-water swimming!

– Cows love to lick a sweaty bald head.


– Hiking poles are not only for older people.

– It’s best to turn back if you go the wrong way.

– There’s no shame in admitting defeat (the GR20 in Corsica requires preparation!).

– After all these years, I still carry stuff I never need, but less and less of it each time.

– Day 4 of any long-distance hike is always the one when I wonder what I’m doing.

– Even in the city, great hikes can be found and the discoveries there are just as numerous as in the wild.



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