I’ve never used walking poles before as I didn’t find them natural, however a trip to the Lakes last year I did briefly try a pair and whilst not instantly sold on the idea I did see benefits on ascents/decents and more so trying to cross streams. I cant see that Id ever use them on the flat, but time will tell.
The pair I tried were the Pacer Poles, which have a “revolutionary” handle which changes the way in which they support your wrist, I found these more comfortable than others Id held, although Ive not used any for any period of time, and Ive just taken delivery of a pair of the alloy variety, weighing in at 650g. The carbon version are a little more pricey and a little lighter.
Trying to make walking poles look 'sexy'. Not easy.
Managed to get a boxed set of the BBC Wainwright Walks series for £20 this week, which includes the two Wainwright Walks series and the Coast to Coast and Railway Walks series. I wasnt as taken by the latter as I was the other three as the scenery wasnt as captivating but its a great boxed set.
The production of all of the series are fantastic and they are great to watch this time of year as plans are being made for the coming year. I even have them on my iphone to enable me to watch them on the train en route to the lakes.
I’ve recently bought a Rab Neutrino Vest from Go Outdoors for £88.
I was waiting for Alpkit to re-stock their Filet which is a bargain at £60, however they aren’t due in stock until February and I got fed up of waiting. Shame as Alpkit as often is the case are a victim of their own success and often struggle to keep up with demands.
Id read good reviews of the Rab vest and after trying it on in Go Outdoors bit the bullet and paid the £28 extra and have been delighted with it. Its comfortable and the fabric isn’t offensive to the ears like a lot of these garments. Wearing it over my Berghaus fleece I have been warm and cosy sitting for 2 hours watching Southend United play. It will come in very handy camping over the spring and will keep me warm on any chilly evenings!
On the last Lakes trip we were on our way down from Styhead Tarn and I accidentally stepped on my own foot, or more specifically on the edge of the sole of my right boot. I immediately felt something give and when I looked at the boot the bottom part of the sole had come loose. When I looked at the other boot I could see that the sole was also coming away from the boot on that one too. These boots were only 10 months old and had not been used that much and it was disappointing both were failing in the same way.
I bought the boots from All Weathers in Billericay and as always hadnt kept the receipt so took them down there to see what they could do. Unlike other stores (Debenhams and a month old pair of shoes spring to mind) there was no quibble about lack of receipt, they simply took the boots and sent them off to Hi-tec for me, and a few weeks later rang me to tell me a new pair had been sent out.
Lets hope these don’t suffer from the same issue the others did as I don’t really want to buy another pair of boots just yet and was hoping to buy a pair of walking shoes this year…
Well other things too priority in my life over the past 4 months or so but now Im looking forward to the year ahead and getting excited about our first real trip in April to the Lake District, and following that a trip to Slovenia to celebrate (?) the year in which many of us turn 40.
Sadly the last time I donned my boots in anger was back in September when three of us went up to Stonethwaite again for a couple of days and walked up Castle Crag and on the following day up to Allen Crags. It was a great trip and for once I didnt have to take all of the photographs which was a bonus.
Heres a video slideshow of that trip, youtube wont host it as its shock horror 12 minutes long. Or just dull. Not sure!
The video clips were just shot on my iPhone, now theres no excusing the poor camera work, but overall Im not overly impressed with the iPhone as a camera and will be looking out for something better in the near future. Widescreen and better quality would be great to have for this years trips, whether I can something affordable and light enough is another matter.
Well as I said earlier via the magic of iPhone and the wordpress app Im now gainly employed again following a lengthy gardening leave and am making plans to hit the hills on Thursday.
How frustrating that I had 12 weeks off and due to constraints with finding new employment and wanting to count the pennies just in case I didnt get to wander around during my time off! Funnily enough Im now going up whilst again earning a crust, and my brother will be driving using company petrol, so it wont cost anything anyway!
One thing I did manage was to take the family camping a number of times, to the Brecon Beacons (sadly no walking), Norfolk, Kent and Suffolk. People complain about the weather in our summer but on all but the Welsh trip we had glorious sunshine!
Anyway, this week is a last of the summer trip and three of us are going up just for two nights, this time our friend Terry is joining us for the first time. Terry is an amateur photographer (although does get paid for weddings so could be professional!?)who hasnt been up there with us before and Im hoping will help me in improving my own photographs. Normally when backpacking there I would leave my dSLR behind due to the weight but as we have a nice sized boot Ill be bringing it along this time.
AS for the actual trip I think we will head to Seathwaite this time and have a walk up Allen Crags/Galarama via Stockley Bridge taking in some tarns for photographic opportunities! Who knows, if the weather permits might even take the Laser Comp up and see about a wild camp.
Thoroughly looking forward to just getting up into the outdoors again after whats been a fairly stressful couple of months!