This will be my third year attending the South West Outdoor Festival (SWOF), a festival for adventure lovers that tours around the South West and is happening this year on the 5th - 7th October in East Soar, South Devon. Ever year, SWOF has been my favourite festival and I'm going to outline why I'm so excited.
1. Awesome locations
As the festival is run by the National Trust, the locations are always idyllic and show off some of the best spots in the South West. In the first year at Heddon Mouth in Exmoor the mountain bike ride went out from the festival site, along the sea cliffs and to the epic valley of the rocks. The second year on top of Cheddar Gorge was, well, it was on top of Cheddar Gorge!
2. the inspiration for uk adventure
Speakers who I have seen at the festival have included Sean Conway, Monty Halls, Dave Cornthwaite, Anna McNuff, Jamie McDonald and Tobias Mews, to name a few. All with epic tales of adventure to share to inspire you to get creative and push yourself. From skateboarding across the UK to dressing up as a crocodile and running the South West Coast Path. If you want inspiration for adventure, this is the place.
3. The activities
Activities I've enjoyed at SWOF have included guided mountain bike rides and fun races, yoga, sea kayaking, guided walks, foraging, axe throwing, archery and even tree climbing. This year is set to be epic as the festival site is so close to the sea and all the watersports activities. I'm looking forward to the night run! Trail Unknown will be at SWOF this year running mini mountain bike races with prizes to win and running mountain bike rides out from the festival site to take in the local sights.
4. the music
There's been some cracking music over the years to get the hips wobbling in the evenings. From the South West's most loved jam man DJ Dan to bands such as Crinkle Cuts and Sam Green & The Midnight Heist, that I'd describe as absolute gems I'd never heard of before but are now regularly playing in my van. Yes, that is a picture of me dancing in the front row with a 10 year old and my 70 year old parents behind me. All ages welcome on the dance floor!
5. The curry van
Please oh please may those heaven sent men provide me with more onion bhajis again this year! The bhajis are so good Hugo ran an impromptu trail marathon to get one for free. At the last festival they brought a tray of leftover bhajis onto the dancefloor.
GET your tickets here and see you there
Hugo and Tom are trail hunting fanatics, travelling around the UK to find the best and most beautiful wild riding locations for their mountain bikes. We write about our findings and provide professionally guided mountain bike trips to our favourite spots. We're also big believers in outdoor education for children.