Start Here!

I am Rosie – a fell runner, climber, wild swimmer and all-round mountain lover from the Lake District, UK. 25 years old, and currently running to Asia, searching for stories of new ways of living, working and meeting our needs in a time of climate crisis.

What is the New Story Run?

We are living in a climate crisis, and urgently need to re-address how we live. The impacts are already being felt, often by those with limited resources to adapt, and/or who have contributed little to the problem itself. We are plagued by inaction, a sense of apathy, and a culture where we waste time by trying to blame each other, without taking responsibility ourselves.

On 17th August, I set off running from my home in the Lake District, UK, across Europe, towards Asia. I am meeting people along the way who are dedicated to tackling the climate crisis and it’s related issues. Their stories are told through photography, interviews and writing on this website HERE at the New Story Portfolio, social media and other platforms, with the vision of creating a hugely diverse portfolio of ‘new stories’ from across the world!

I will also cross as many mountain ranges and areas of wilderness, remoteness and natural beauty as I can, and communicate these experiences alongside the ‘new stories’. By exploring the climate crisis and it’s solutions through a story of adventure, I aim to explore these issues in a fresh and personal way.

The New Story Run is also twinned with Mike Elm’s New Story Ride, a bike-packing adventure with a shared purpose, but by bike – find out more here!

But what if it’s too late? What if it’s too hard to change, or we don’t adapt quick enough? Is it even possible? As with tackling the climate crisis, I don’t know for sure how far I’ll get, or if I’ll make it all the way to Mongolia – but I am prepared to try. Where there is determination, there is hope! This is the message I will try to hold onto, both in my own adventure, and the climate crisis!

Where is the idea from?

Mountain running is my passion, and I’ve been running since I was 11/12 years old. I studied Environment & Business at the University of Leeds, and have worked in various jobs in the environmental sector, including running a community climate-art project, working on transport issues at Sustainable Business Network in New Zealand, researching for Mike Berners-Lee, author of ‘There Is No Planet B: A handbook for the make or break years’, and working for 2050 Climate Group, a social movement of young people in Scotland leading action on climate change. These were all brilliant, but I felt that sitting in an office on a computer all day was missing something vital, and wasn’t the way I wanted to live! The wise adventure activist Kate Rawles once told me ‘you have to tackle sustainability in the way that makes you feel most alive’. This adventure is exactly that.

How?

This is a solo and self-supported expedition*. I will be wild camping as much as possible, including in winter, as I am on a limited budget – as I’m using my own savings as well as Go Fund Me donations, and some sponsorship from Small World Consulting. The journey will be entirely on foot, apart from some ferries across bodies of water. I may use public transport to get around ‘stopping points’, but will always start running again from the point I left off. I will absolutely not fly, even to get back home at the end of it! I will be eating mostly porridge, peanut butter, noodles, and whatever else I can find that’s super cheap. If you’d like to support me through hosting me for a night, providing a free meal (or in return for some washing up), donating a fews pennies, or if you’re an ethical brand ready to help me through the winter with your kit – please check out the Get Involved page!

*I will be mostly on my own, apart from the times my path diverges with the New Story Ride, and times when friends join me for short sections. I will be carrying all of my stuff – there won’t be a ‘support crew’ with me. However I will be staying with friends and contacts when my route passes by. I have some support in terms of advice, coaching and some kit (see Supporters page), and family and friends back home cheering me on! They will also help me post out extra kit during winter.

Best advice: Trust yourself.

#inspo: Kate Rawles, Rosie Swale-Pope, Hazel Findley, Jenny Graham, Jenny Tough, Anna McNuff, Becky Willis, Greta Thunberg and everyone at 2050 Climate Group.

Want more info? Check out a few interviews on my Media page!

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27 thoughts on “Start Here!

  1. What you are doing is beautiful! So humble; so necessary! The world is in serious trouble and has gone mad with consumerism. Loved your article: “Building a sustainable outdoor community after COVID-19”. What do you think?: If governments have demonstrated the power to order a total lockdown for COVID then if they took climate change seriously and with the same power, then what else could be “locked down” as a climate crisis combat measure?: No flights in the country on Fridays? Compulsory human-powered commuting once per week? Illegal to buy non-essential consumable goods one-day per week? Forget about the economy and money and then this might be possible. But for now, capitalism and consumerism rules. Safe travels and travel well! 🙂

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  2. Hello Rosie

    Love your project! Sadly it looks like we just missed meeting in Ljubljana where you caught up with my good mate Marin Medak. I was there for a couple of days until Sunday morning. Marin and I rowed a boat from Tunisia together when he joined part of my human-powered circumnavigation of the Mediterranean. But I actually heard you were with Marin not via him but via my good friend Jon Cross in Scotland! Anyway good luck to you on this fine journey being done for all the right reasons. Travel Well!

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  3. Heh Rosie, having just heard your interview on Radio 4 I had to leave a message: a small meaningless effort compared to your own, nevertheless the least I could do. What inspired me was your message and commitment to telling the Climate Change story. So inspiring!
    We have to make others aware, particularly those of my age group – 62. Keep going – I stand in awe!!

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  4. Ah thanks so much Claus! Glad someone found the story in the Guestbook 😀 Hope you had a good time out in the mountains too. It was the last days of summery weather I think!

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  5. Very nice actual picture above, Rosie.
    On the spot it looked so familiar to me and some seconds later, your position was clear to me:
    at the beginning of the so called „Himmelsleiter“ = Jacob’s ladder to Säntis (2502 m, Alpstein, Switzerland) with Lake Constance right behind…found your entry from 01Nov19 yesterday in the guestbook of the Gündleskopf (1748 m) – peak on the Nagelfluh Ridge (Allgäu, Germany) – Good trip you’ve done there too – Congrats ;-)! All the best – a good heart, legs, mental strenght…- for the further course of your mission and big adventure!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Truly inspiring story and you are a powerhouse of an adventure queen! I’m looking forward to hearing more about your adventure. I noticed that you’re planning on crossing Slovenia! Give me a shout! All the best and keep it up! You’re doing great!

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Hi Hans! Thanks so much. GPS – Yes, but it’s just another thing to keep charged and that I don’t really need! I just have a small bag, so only the essentials… 🙂

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  8. Dear Rosie,

    Thank you for these wonderful and inspiring stories so far. I like the way you make the reader think about their habits.
    I wonder whether you have already left England. Have you ever thought about a GPS tracker ;-)?

    All the best from Coburg,
    Hans

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  9. Hi Rosie – Susie Moss from BBC Radio Cumbria here. I have just spotted your story tonight. Is there any chance we could do a phone interview with on Tuesday about starting the run and we could then do bits and bobs with you as your journey/adventure progresses?

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Hi Julia,
    Thanks so much for your comment and encouragement! Your group sounds great, and I really hope you’re successful – it’s so important! Could you email me so we can see if works to meet? It’s newstoryrosie@gmail.com
    Thanks!
    Rosie

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Hi, Rosie-
    I’m really interested in this expedition, as one of several residents around the Cockermouth area who’ve have just formed Climate Emergency West Cumbria (CEWC) two weeks ago-

    Currently, we’re urging Allerdale council to declare a climate emergency in this borough at their next council meeting (25th September), and educating young learners about the reality of climate change.
    (I’m sure that you’re far too busy preparing to spare time, but we’re meeting next this Thursday the 15th August at 7.30, at the Friends Meeting House on Kirkgate, Cockermouth. You’d be very welcome if you are free!)

    We’ve few resources (yet!) but are inspired by your journey- and also hate the apathy that accompanies a problem of this scale.

    Are we one of the groups that you’re interested in hearing from?

    Julia Robinson

    Liked by 1 person

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