MAGAZINE FEATURES

“Impeccably researched”, “well crafted”, “engagingly written” and “beautifully presented”… That’s what you can expect from a feature written by Vivienne Crow, according to the editors with whom she works. From evocative outdoor pieces to personality profiles, her writing is both informative and entertaining; inspiring and practical.

Vivienne has received several awards for her work including three in the ‘Best Outdoor Feature’ category of the Outdoor Writers and Photographers Guild’s annual Awards for Excellence – in 2010, 2012 and 2018.

Click on the links below to read some of her features in full…    

Into the Night

The Great Outdoors
June 2019

I’VE BEEN SITTING ON SKIDDAW’S flat, slate-covered summit plateau watching the slowly setting sun for more than an hour. There’s no wind and the quiet is so profound I can hear the swoosh of the swifts as they dive for flies. The landscape around me is steadily changing: the colours and definition of the high ridges are becoming more intense while, in the valleys, shadows consume all.

The Weaver of the Woods

BBC Countryfile
January 2020

On the wooded shores of Coniston Water, Owen Jones, one of only two swill basketmakers left in Cumbria, sits in his chilly workshop surrounded by wood – oak, hazel, birch, willow – all in various stages of processing. Sawdust and shavings litter the floor. Steam drifts up from the large boiler at the back of the room, filling the space with the sweet smell of oak boiling.

48 hours in the
Scottish Borders

Camping and Caravanning Club
January 2020

As we travelled through the Scottish Borders, I was struck by its sense of remoteness. This sparsely populated region, once controlled by thieving, murderous clans known as Reivers, feels like it’s a long way from anywhere. It’s not though – Galashiels, its largest town, is about an hour from Edinburgh and less than two hours from both Glasgow and Newcastle. 

Taking it Slowly on the Llyn

MMM
June 2019

A sense of being isolated from the outside world is, for me at least, one of the key attractions of the Llyn Peninsula. It’s not an easy place to get to. Once you’ve come off the North Wales Expressway, there’s just one last stretch of decent A road before you find yourself on increasingly narrow lanes that lead slowly – ever so slowly – into a pastoral landscape where time seems to be standing still.

Ticket to Ride

Camping and Caravanning Club
October 2016

I COULD get used to this – motoring through the beautiful Pennine countryside at a sedate pace, attracting admiring glances and waves from other road users, causing heads to turn. Sadly, it’s not me attracting all this attention – it’s the 1959 Bristol Lodekka bus on which I’m a passenger. My partner Heleyne and I are travelling with our terrier Jess, from Kirkby Stephen to Hawes on Cumbria Classic Coaches’ 569 service. All the buses start from the small Eden Valley village of Ravenstonedale, where Cumbria Classic Coaches has its depot but you can flag them down almost anywhere along their routes, and the most you’ll pay for a return journey is £12.

Northumberland's Wide Skies

MMM
September 2014

I’d not seen a soul for hours. All I could see right now were hills marching off into the distance, towards the sea. In fact, from my seated position on top of the heather-clad hill of Deer Play in the Northumberland National Park, there were no signs of human habitation at all; no farmhouses, no electricity pylons, not even a dry stone wall. Indeed, the most intrusive items in this vast, empty landscape – apart from me – were the hilltop cairn and a fingerpost sign marking the route of the Pennine Way, which I had been following since Bellingham.

The Langdale Round

The Great Outdoors
October 2013

It’s still dark when we set off from Elterwater. Autumn already has a hold on the woods, eerily silent in the calm, pre-dawn hour: where leaves had been hanging a week or so earlier, damp mist now clings to the melancholic branches, and the chill air holds just the faintest hint of decay. Wood smoke lingers in the air too, a sure sign that the Lake District summer is over. 

Silenced Again

The Great Outdoors
January 2013

“SNOWSHOEING TRIP CANCELLED DUE TO TOO MUCH SNOW.” This was the irony I was potentially facing last winter after Bosnia experienced its highest snowfall since records began. Just days before I was due to fly to Sarajevo, a massive 103cm fell on the city in a single night. With a state of emergency declared and no thaw likely for at least a week, I started looking at options closer to home. But that was before I knew anything of the resilience and sense of community among the people of this once famously besieged city…

A Suitable Case for TLC

Lakeland Walker
August 2009

As the morning sun finally breaches the top of Blencathra and the first warming rays light up lonely Skiddaw House at the base of England’s fourth highest mountain, it is easy to understand why this isolated youth hostel inspires so many people. Less than 200 years ago, the Earl of Egremont would have stayed here with his shooting parties; today, dozens of people from all walks of life devote huge amounts of time and energy to restoring this former gamekeepers’ lodge, three miles from the nearest road, to its former glory.