Category Archives: Outdoor Gear

Walking in the Rydal Valley

The weather improved today so I travelled a few miles up the road past Rydal, parked and went walking and geocaching. Geocache score for the day 2.

Helm Crag
I think the rainbow is on Helm Crag

I crossed the river between Grassmere and Rydal Water and climbed up from there towards Loughrigg Fell. It stayed dry and sometimes sunny where I was but I could see the rain in the distance.

Fell walking in the Lake District

Loughrigg Terrace
Loughrigg Terrace

Lake District Fell

At lunchtime I found a convenient bench, with a great view.


Alpkit cooking system
Alpkit cooking system with Sea to Summit pack and Platypus 1l roll up water bottle

I had a number of visitors when I stopped for lunch

Rydal Water
Rydal Water

New gear – Rab silk sleeping bag liner

Rab silk sleeping bag liner

The seams on my old silk sleeping had started to fail after over 15 years of service. I had repaired it several times but the silk was still giving way.

Jeremy and Michael bought this replacement for me for Christmas. It weighs less than the old one at 128g against 153g but is longer at 185cm.

Download my current itemised and weighed backpacking kit list here.

Camping at the hotel!

Camping at the hotel

I decided to stay at a hotel nearer to where Jeremy is now living in Edinburgh – the Budget Ibis. The rooms are basic, but fine for a night or two and reasonably cheap. They do not however supply a kettle – so I packed my own and included porridge, homemade raspberry jam and fresh coffee for breakfast.

My lightweight camping cook set.

The cable and adaptor is for my iphone so I could watch videos on the TV.

The day turned out to be damp, cold and overcast so we ended up watching The Grand Tour and the Saints verses the Cardinals at Jeremy’s flat – hence this is Today’s Photo!

New gear – Sawyer Mini Water Filter

New gear - Sawyer Mini Water Filter

Sawyer Mini Water Filter

The seal on my water filter bottle failed so I have replaced it with this lighter weight model. The set came with a bottle for the untreated water, a direct use straw and a cleaning kit.

It will also fit onto the roll up water bottles I already own and commercial drink bottles with a standard 28mm thread.

Sawyer Mini Water Filter

Specifications and description

Walking and Geocaching – Grantown on Spey – New Gear

The boys went fishing today near Grantown on Spey, so after dropping them off I set off to do some walking. There are plenty of good forest walks around Grantown on Spey and a lot of geocaches have been hidden there so planing a route was straight forward.

Walking and Geocaching - Grantown on Spey

Several of the geocaches were challenging to find (I did get some help on one of them from a local) but searching them out is part of the fun. I was planning on getting 10 – managed 7 as the boys wanted to be picked up earlier than planned.

Walking and Geocaching - Grantown on Spey

For lunch I found a shaded spot, essential for today as it was very hot and sunny, with a very convenient tree stump. Before setting up the stove I was very careful to clear the ground of the dry leaf litter as I did not want any risk of fire.

Walking and Geocaching - Grantown on Spey


Top of the list today was water.

1l roll up Platypus bottle with a drinking tube – I do not use the bladder tube very often but today it was useful to be able to sip water regularly
0.5l roll up water bottle – used to make my lunch time coffee (I know coffee dehydrates but I like it)
0.3l water with a squirt of Robinsons Squash’d citrus

Lightweight Sea to Summit pack
Map and compass
Rain jacket – not really necessary today but I still packed it
Lunch – including a snack pot of tinned pineapple for the liquid
Backpacking cooking set
GSI lightweight insulated mug
Sit mat – pads the back of the pack
Sun stick and lip balm
Bush hat with wide brim
Victorinox Camper Swiss Army Knife on a paracord lanyard

Long sleeved lightweight shirt
Crag Hopper long trousers
Karrimor hiking shoes with Bridgedale hiking socks

Pocket first aid kit, pack of tissues, whistle, space blanket, length of cord, four large safety pins, glucose tablets
Head lamp
Emergency power pack for my smartphone

Plenty of factor 50 sun screen applied before setting out.

New Gear

GSI Infinity Backpacker Mug

I bought a new mug yesterday – a GSI lightweight insulated mug, that is big enough to be used as a bowl to rehydrate a meal in when camping or backpacking. The lid has a sturdy lift up flap for drinking out of and to protect from swimming flies.

GSI Infinity Backpacker Mug

GSI Infinity Backpacker Mug

The insulated jacket is removable for cleaning.

GSI Infinity Backpacker Mug

Capacity 500ml
Weight 99g


I saw this flavoured instant coffee in the supermarket the other day. Tastes great so I have added a Nalgene bottle if it to my kit.