It’s finally in the bag

I’m writing this on the evening of Friday 3rd July, 2020 and tomorrow is going to be a big day, the Coronavirus lockdown is being relaxed and camping will be allowed and the pubs will reopen. This means the return of wild camping and post walk pints, and I can’t wait!

I don’t know about you, but the best I’ve managed during lockdown is some day trips around my beautiful home county of Lincolnshire, one short trip to the East Riding of Yorkshire to bag its high point, and one day trip to the Peak District. I’ve been longing for bigger summits and for multi day trips via wild camping and tomorrow, the camping season begins, bring it on!

I have however spent a lot of lockdown upgrading my kit and I’m excited to be trying some of it out tomorrow, so now I’m packed and ready to go, I thought the best way to double check I’ve got everything I need is go through it and explain what I’m taking, so here goes.

Comfortable, cavernous and clever!

The rucksack I’m using is an Osprey Aether 70. It’s a great pack with amazing support, perfect for carrying everything you need in comfort. It’s got some really clever features too, like quick release walking pole attachments and a detachable hood to provide flexible packing.

It all goes in with room to spare!

So the kit I’m taking is as follows:

Tent – Vango Banshee 200 Pro with footprint.

Montane Spectrum beanie.

Montane Prism gloves (very packable and warm).

Marvel buff.

Petzl Actik headtorch + spare batteries. I’m getting very tempted to upgrade to the Petzl Core range as constantly buying batteries seems to me like a waste of money and bad for the environment.

Gas canister.

Osprey 2.5 litre hydration pack.

Food bag consisting of Wayfarer meals, primula cheese, tortilla wraps, beef jerky and snack bars.

MSR Pocket Rocket (small and powerful).

Spare dry bag with micro towel inside.

OEX down sleeping bag. I do occasionally use a much lighter bag and liner, but love the comfort of this one!

Thermarest inflatable mat. It’s not the cheapest on the market, but it’s worth every penny.

Map and map case with compass. I love the OS Maps app on my phone, but old fashioned paper maps don’t ever go wrong or run out of power, that’s just the user!

Trowel for when needs must.

Petzl Noctilight. I absolutely love this device as its tiny, compressible and turns my headtorch into a lamp that disperses the light, illuminating the whole tent!

Dry bag with spare clothing.

Montane compressed down jacket for evening chills.

Survival bag which doubles up as a brilliant seat for wet ground.

Homemade basic first aid kit with additional insect spray.

Osprey 500ml collapsible water bottle.

Freeloader Sixer solar panel which charges my phone etc. It also has a booster solar panel which is attached to the back of my rucksack for on-the-go charging.

Sunglasses.

Toilet roll and rubbish bag or spare bag.

OEX carbon fibre walking poles. These are fairly cheap compared to others on the market, but so incredibly light.

Berghaus Arran coat. I’ve got the 3-in-1 variant, but always shove the fleece in my spare clothing dry bag, unless it’s winter!

Berghaus Deluge 2.0 waterproof trousers.

Gaiters.

Not insight is a Sea to Summit Alpha 2 Pot Cook Set 2.2. I love this set as I find its light and compact. If I’m on my own I can just remove what’s not needed and save even more weight!

I think that’s all. It’s probably not the lightest of packs, but I feel fairly comfortable carrying the weight. I could probably shave off a few more pounds here and there (the pack, not myself) by really asking if things are needed, used or essential, but then again, It’s nice to have a few luxuries!

If you’ve got any tips or suggestions on kit, let me know!

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