Back to nature: Danes increasingly joining outdoor clubs

Lucie Rychla
May 3rd, 2016

This article is more than 8 years old.

The number of Danes joining scout associations, getting a hunting licence or taking up winter-bathing has been growing steadily over the past few years, reports Kristeligt Dagblad.

More and more Danes are spending time outdoors in an attempt to reconnect with mother nature, escape the hamster wheel of modern life and get ‘back to basics’.

The trend has also been noticed by the Environmental and Food Ministry, which has decided to expand the list of forests where people can stay overnight by 25 to a total of 201.

Last year, over 140,000 people stayed overnight in the Danish woods, which is a 40 percent increase compared with 2012, and the figure is expected to rise up to 160,000 this year.

Reunited with nature
“Many more people than before are trying to express their identity through their relationship with nature,” Jan Ejlsted, the head of the Danish Outdoor Council, told Kristeligt Dagblad.
“Right now it is clearly highly trendy to go back to basics when men wanted to sleep outdoors, grow a full beard and chop wood with an axe.”
Mickey Gjerris, an associate professor of bioethics, believes the Danes are longing to be more in touch with nature and with themselves.

“We are part of nature and so spending time in it is a way of self-realisation,” Gjerris told Kristeligt Dagblad.

“We want to get in touch with the sides of ourselves that makes us feel humble and small, and for many this means crossing their boundaries and getting exposed to situations they cannot quite control.”


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