What I carry when outdoors

When going for a ramble or a more serious walk I tend to carry the same things in my rucksack.

I’ve always used ‘mental systems’ so that I remember things. For the great outdoors it’s:

  • Food
  • Water
  • Shelter
  • Communication
  • Navigation
  • Emergency
  • Photographic

Let me break that down for you.

Food 

Pasties, sandwiches, fruit, nuts, chocolate.

Water

Plain water to make a brew with the Jetboil and some diluted squash. Occasionally a bottle of beer for summit celebrations!

Shelter

Thermal smock, waterproof, hat (baseball and woollen cap), gloves.

Communication

iPhone. Very occasionally Motorola Radios if there’s more than just me.

Navigation

Map, compass, GPS (Satmap Active 10 and mapping app on iPhone). Route card. Occasionally guide book.

Emergency

Petzl head torch, Leatherman, whistle, lighter (Zippo).

Photographic 

CCS camera bag or Lowe Pro depending if more than one lens is taken. Camera, spare batteries and CF Cards. Cleaning cloth and blower brush. Remote release. Tripod (Benbo Trekker or Manfrotto).


 

I’ve just ordered a new rucksack…a black version of the Berghaus Ridgeway…I’ll keep you  informed…

http://www.berghaus.com/ridgeway-65%2B10-rucksack/421583.html

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In the doldrums 

I’ve been in the photography / walking / camping doldrums for a few years now. Must be an age thing.

I used to be a very keen fell walker and have done it since about 1983.


  

Anyway, I’ve snapped out of that now. I’ve just prepped my new Berghaus Crusader rucksack for this years adventures.


And I’ve bought a new OEX Lynx tent for some camping adventures!

And I’ve sorted out the camping kit.


Let the adventures begin!

Ultimate Peapod 

About 1984 I bought an Ultimate Peapod tent to use as I camped all over The Lake District. 

 

I used it extensively until about 1991.

It then went into the loft…

I used it once in 2009 on a Skye trip…apart from a few blemishes it was as good as new.

I’m off to Skye soon so thought I’d best check it out.

I pitched it on Sunday 5th April 2015….remarkably after  31 years it appears to function as new. (Although I’ve not checked its waterproofness)!

 

 

I think it cost about £100 at the time, when I was on about £28 per week. So very expensive. Looking back….best £100 I ever spent. Used to ‘Wild Camp’ before it was ‘fashionable’ and was just called ‘Camping’…

 

Another fabulous holiday in Eskdale.

We recently spent a fabulous few days at the Camping and Caravanning site in Eskdale.

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The site was, as ever, immaculate.  My son squirted the trees with ‘Alien Acid’ whilst I erected the Vango Airbeam tent.

 

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There are some great pubs nearby, for lunch one day we visited the Boot Inn.

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I was enjoying a rather tasty Tuna Mayo sandwich until I found two blonde hairs stuck to the bread, yuk.  They clearly weren’t mine as you can see I’m as bald as a coot!

On another day we walked to Dalegarth Station (a very short walk indeed) and took La’al Ratty to Ravenglass.  My wife and son did a bit of beach combing.

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We also had a short stroll to the Roman Bath House…

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When we returned to the camp site my son tried to wear himself out on the trampoline.

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On our last day we had a wonderful walk alongside the River Esk…

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We had an excellent time and will return again soon!

 

 

 

A weekend camping in Eskdale…

We recently purchased a  new tent…a Vango Icarus 500 Airbeam.  Having no experience of the Airbeam technology we decided to use the long weekend as a ‘pilot’ camp – to test the ease of erection <ahem> and stability.

We returned to the Camping and Caravanning  camp site at Eskdale on Friday. We had stayed the previous  year in the Camping Pods, my son loved it so much and made some friends who were staying in tents, hence him persuading us to buy ours.

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On arrival we were greeted by Martyn Merckel, the Franchisee.  He’s a very friendly chap…and a busy one… Martin showed us to our pitch, a nice quiet area away from the top field where there is a children’s play area, so it can get a bit boisterous with lots of excitable kids playing.

My wife took my son to play in the play area whilst I rolled my sleeves up and prepared the camp.  Putting up the tent was simplicity itself, you simply peg out the corners, inflate the 3 Airbeams with the pump provided, then peg out the rest of the tent and guy ropes.  Easy peasy.  Once the tent was fully erected it appeared very stable indeed, that said, there was no rain or wind to contend with.

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When my son returned from playing he could not believe daddy had got the tent up so quickly….

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It was also Harry’s first camp (the pooch)…he seemed to enjoy himself…

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The camp site is dog friendly, has all the facilities you could wish for, and is immaculate.  A credit to Martin and Sara.

Whilst I was sitting chilling with a beer, I noticed an Army truck dropping people off and picking them up from the camp site entrance.  On investigation I found out it was being used as transportation to The Woolpack Inn about a mile along the undulating and narrow road.

We decided to visit the Inn on the Saturday.

The Woolpack Inn is in the heart of Eskdale in the Lake District National Park and the location is stunning – at the top of one of England’s most dramatic valleys, and the bottom of one of its most exciting roads – Hardknott Pass.

We walked along the road where there were some fantastic views to be had along the way…we soon reached the Inn.

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And shortly after our arrival, the Army truck turned up…

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Apparently, it’s a Reynolds-Boughton: RB44. You can find out more about it here…

We lazed in the sunshine drinking beer whilst my son played in the play area.  The menu at the Woolpack Inn is fabulous…it had us salivating in no time…

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We went back to the camp site in the evening after a fabulous day….after another lazy ‘sit around drinking beer’ episode it was time for bed, have to be up early to strike camp and drive back home.

We can’t wait to return…

 

 

Personal Goals 2014

These are my goals for 2014:

Lose 50lbs.
Be in the best physical shape I can be.
Here I am circa 1991, not sure if I can get quite into this shape but I’m going to try my very best!

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Photograph a minimum of 12 personally satisfying landscape images.
I’ve decided I’m not going to have any ‘clients’ – I’ll take photographs just to satisfy me, then pop them onto a web site, if they sell, they sell. If they don’t, then no loss. No more weddings and portraits. Too much pressure!

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Turnover £1200 on Landscape image sales.
I’ll set up a Clikpic site or similar and see if any of my images sell! Simple!

Ascend 24 Birketts.
A Birkett is a fell over 300 metres in height in the English Lake District. Named after Bill Birkett who catalogued them. Here’s the chap himself who I photographed at Friars Crag, Derwentwater.

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Read 12 books.
I love to read, both fact and fiction. I’m currently reading this…it’s heavy going 🙂

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What are yours?