Peak District Pick and Play

12th Apr 2016

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AMI                          rav        ppvc

The Peak District National Park is the busiest in the UK and only second in popularity in the whole world. It’s a fantastic natural resource for millions of visitors, but inevitably such large numbers also causes significant problems.  Locals and visitors alike take great pride in keeping the area tidy, but if you look carefully along the base of gritstone crags, in stream beds, wooded areas and other nooks and crannies you’ll see plenty of accumulated litter.

As a local outdoor business, Peak Mountaineering is desperately keen to preserve this wilderness and we are proud of our environmental credentials.  But, of course, anyone passionate about the world’s resources can’t just sit still - it’s always a work in progress.  For the past 5 years one of our initiatives has been a unique event combining our expertise as outdoor activity providers with cleaning up the park.  We call it the Peak District Pick and Play and the concept is simple - if participants spare a few hours cleaning up the park, we’ll provide some free adventure activities for them to try.

Last year alone we welcomed 65 people who collected 140kgs of rubbish before enjoying afternoon climbing, abseiling, hillwalking and mountain biking sessions.

We can't do this alone

We instigated the Pick and Play, but we know it wouldn’t be possible without some significant help.  We are privileged to organise the event alongside the Peak Park Conservation Volunteers and Peak Park Ranger Service.  We are also delighted to be sponsored by Peak District born and bred equipment brand Rab and environmentally focussed brand Nikwax (all participants will receive some great freebies from the brands and may even win a superb prize in our lunchtime raffle). The event also relies on a team of Association of Mountaineering Instructors (AMI) members who give up their time to provide the expertise for the adventure activities.

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Who can participate?

Singles, families, couples and groups - we welcome everyone to the Pick & Play.  It’s a strictly all inclusive event.   

When and where?

This year the event takes place on Sunday 15th May between 10.00 and 16.30 and is based at the Surprise View Car Park which is on the Hathersage to Sheffield road (you won’t miss the banners as you pass the car park!).  It is also easily accessed by bus from Sheffield and Hathersage.  The grid reference is SK 251800.  We have arranged free parking in the car park for the duration of the event.

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What happens on the day?

We’ll meet between 09.30 and 10.00 to get everyone registered and then, after a brief welcome, head out for action.   The conservation volunteers and rangers will lead groups to litter hotspots to collect all we can (we have bin bags, litter grabbers and protective gloves available for everyone) before returning to Surprise View for lunch (we’ll provide hot drinks and some light snacks but please bring a packed lunch). 

In the afternoon everyone will head off to their chosen outdoor activity for a fun and informative session before meeting up to say our goodbyes (and grab the essential celebratory team photos!) at 16.30.

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What outdoor activities are available?

This year we have more options than ever before and all activities are suitable for beginners and children so don’t worry that you’ll be out of your depth.

Climbing - Tackle some of the amazing gritstone climbs that make the Peak District such a sought after climber’s destination.  Suitable for all ages (under 18’s must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian).  Easy walking distance from Surprise View. 

Abseiling - It’s all about the down! Can you descend one of the steep quarry walls while looking cool for those all important social media photos?!  Suitable for all ages (under 18’s must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian).  Easy walking distance from Surprise View.

Mountain Biking - One of our expert instructors will guide you on some peachy Peak District trails.  Suitable for adults and children over 10 who are confident cyclists (under 18’s must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian).  Participants need to provide a suitable bike and helmet and have transport available to move their bikes to the start point.

Weaselling - Think of this as a sort of outdoor caving mixed with scrambling and climbing!  Weaselling is a fun adventure activity suitable for all ages (under 18’s must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian).  Participants need to have transport available to travel the short distance to the start point.

Bushcraft - Become a Ray Mears for the afternoon.  Our expert instructor will show you some key skills to survive comfortably in the great outdoors.  Suitable for all ages (under 18’s must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian).  Easy walking distance from Surprise View.

Navigation Workshop - An expert from the Association of Mountaineering Instructors will share some essential navigation skills to keep you safely on track during your next walk.  Suitable for anyone over 13 (under 18’s must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian).  This session will start from the car park.

Nature Walk - A perfect activity if you want to learn more about the history, flora and fauna of the Peak District National Park.  This walk will be led by one of the Peak Park Rangers and is suitable for all ages (under 18’s must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian).

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 How much does the day cost?

Zilch, nada, nought, zero, zip, diddly-squat…..there is no cost.  It’s all FREE!

What equipment do I need?

Just warm and waterproof clothes and suitable footwear (please wear waterproof and supportive boots for the litter collection and walking activities.  Climbers, abseilers and cyclists may want to bring training shoes for the afternoon activity).  All safety and technical equipment will be provided. 

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How do I sign up?

We simply ask all participants to let us know they are coming in advance by completing one of our online booking forms here.  This allows us to allocate the right number of instructors to particular activities and ensure equipment is available.  We do need a booking form for each participant and if you can please make it clear which activity you’d like to do in the ‘Course Title’ box.  It really is that simple. 

One last thing…..  

Although places are limited to 60, we want to enough of a turn out to make a difference!  Please help spread the word for us and, even if you can’t come yourself, still encourage your friends, family members, neighbours, colleagues and anyone else you can to join us.   Please also, if you are a social media whizz, share information about the event on all and every platform out there.  Together we can make a difference to this little piece of heaven!

Posted by Cal

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