Thursday 27 March 2008


After an interesting week in Wales it was time to assess what gear will be used on the TGOC. First though gear had to be washed. The hex was slathered in mud, inside and out. To be honest I cannot recall a time when I have had a tent so muddy. The rucksack also had collected its fair share of mud, ditto trousers, boots and gaiters. Food wise I am keeping things fairly simple. Discovering that I can actually buy American dried foods for the same price as in the Uk, that includes postage, I have opted for some of the American stuff. Mainly for variety. Where else can you buy freeze dried choc chip ice cream? The company I have ordered from offer things like individual sachets of ginger and honey crystals. They are WWW.WildernessDining.COM. One or two new bits of gear will be used. A very light pair of carbon fibre trekking poles. Their one down side is their length. My intention is to carry them separately when using public transport as I did in Wales. My first impression of them was that they where flimsy but they seem ok; for summer anyway. The rucksack I find most comfortable with is my Osprey Atmos 50 ltre. This provides enough space for everything. Unfortunately my wash kit weighs in at almost 1lb. This is due to medical stuff I have to carry. Also, I hate travelling in my walking footwear, thus I travel in a light pair of flats and light pair of travel trousers. This does allow spare change of footwear. They fit snugly in one of the front pockets of the atmos. Possibly I will use the Hex, although there is a chance I may be using a different beast. For a ground cloth I am using a light polypropolene sheet from Winwood. At three quid it is worth it. At least with hex I know its capabilities. At present I am saying nothing though! Sleeping bag will be my Western Mountaineering with a silk liner. For added protection I use a very light outer cover with weighs around 4 ounces. The thermarest prolite three quarter. Stove wise I am sticking to the Optimus crux and a single titanium pot. A plastic collapsible bowl serves for a plate, eating cerials, or for washing. My 3ltr collapsible nalgene water bottle and 1 litr water bladder for drinking on the move. Clothing wise is mostly sorted. My Berghause paclite waterproof trousers and Rab nuetrino jacket will be my waterproof outer shell. A couple of light smart wool tees, a slighter heavier thermal top and a windproof. A couple of pairs of undies, ditto bras. My Lowe Alpine women's climbing trousers I think. May in Scotland can be variable. Footwear will be my Scarpa midis. They are heavier than I would have liked but new footwear is expensive. My old gaiters will suffice for muddy conditions. They have seen better days but are still serviceable. Hats gloves, first aid kit etc are always carried anyway and my sharp knife just in case I catch a stray haggis? Overall weight will average, including food and fuel, around 28lb, 11/12 kilo.

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