Paul Bedford – Rock n Ridge Business Owner
Mountain Guiding/Outdoor Activities
I decided to start my own mountain guiding business back in 2003. Albeit it was under a different name then, the ideas were the same. I wanted to provide fun, adventurous and exciting outdoor activities to all. As equally important is to be able to share my passion and knowledge with others when they come on to one of our days/courses. In addition they can take away and put the learning into their own adventures later. And of course, one if not the main reason…Have a blast whilst doing this! After all if you don’t enjoy your job, there ain’t no point in doing it. firstly, secondly
After friends and colleagues kept telling me to ‘just do it’ I, after many years of deliberation, decided to go full time back in 2017, and haven’t looked back since.
I qualified to be a Mountain Instructor and a full member of the Association of Mountaineering Instructors (AMI) back in 2010, and became a Winter Mountain Leader in 2014. The qualifications are vital to ensure people’s safety and well being whilst out mountain guiding. That said and I’m strong believer in this that it takes years before and after the qualifications have finished, to actually gain the ‘Mountain experience’ necessary to guide people safely in the hills. In 2018 I joined the Patagonia and Black Diamond pro scheme, and wear and endorse both brands of clothing and equipment. And for many years have been a friend and advocate for Pacerpoles. A local company based in Windermere that after using every other possible brand of trekking poles in the business over many years, have found these to be the best.
Mountains: outdoor activities
The question I often get when I’m out is ‘how long have I climbed/mountaineered for’? Well my earliest recollection of that is being about six years old carrying a rucksack all the way around the shores of lake Buttermere. Apparently I wouldn’t give it up or put it down all day. A determination that has carried on throughout my adult life. The Rock Climbing came about when I was at school, but then picked it back up when I was about 18. A guy there was keen on climbing and we paired up and had many adventures together in the Lakes, Snowdonia and Scotland. Sharing many epics together (makes you stronger and builds your ‘Mountain experience’) From here the next challenge was the Alps, and then later on the Himalayas.
Tick lists featured later on in my mountaineering career, and I went on to complete the Wainwrights round twice, and the whole of the Classic Rock ticks, and half of the Hard Rock climbs. I’m slowly bagging the Munros, although it never started that way, (that’s what they all say!) And there’s always a peak or a rock face that catches my eye
I’m also a member of the Patagonia and Black Diamond pro scheme, and work closely with the founder and designer of Pacerpoles. The only walking pole in the business that actually pushes you further, faster as well as putting less strain on your joints when you walk.