Sunday, 26 October 2008


With a proposed overnighter in the offing, I've had a look in the armoury and there's a sleeping bag-shaped gap in the weapons rack. I'm covered for 3 season stuff but with The Boy getting the Alpkit AlpineDream 700, I'm left out in the cold, so to speak. I could throw money at the problem by heading over to PHD but then I'd have to decide what, or who, gets sold to raise the money.

I'm wondering if a combination of bags might be the answer? The first 2 that came to mind were the Rab Quantum and the Snugpak Merlin, both "summer" bags on their own but possibly capable of delivering a bit more when combined. Factor in clothing eg PHD Minimus and it could be a go-er.

Quantum Softie

They both fit loosely, one inside the other, so that's a good start. A bit of experimentation is called for but what's the worst that can happen? I get to be cold and uncomfortable for a night? Pah! Been there, done that.

We're talking low-level camp in the CGNP. Worst case, we bug out to Bob Scott's or back to the car.

It's no' The Yukon FFS.

Sunday, 19 October 2008

Kevvy No-Mates

I was over having a look at TGO's new forum layout and jolly nice it is too. It's still a bit quiet but at least they seem to have booted the porn spammers into touch.

However, I was a wee bit disheartened when I had a look at my profile page; there, writ large was the legend "This User Has No Friends". It's even capitalised. Cheers. Thanks for pointing that out.


Heartless bastards.

Thursday, 9 October 2008

A bit down

Man-made fibres are all well and good in this damp climate of ours, but if you want to stay really warm, then down (filled) is the way to go.

The PHD Minimus Vest came to the 'gorms with me back in May. I took it as backup insulation but I ended up sleeping in it and was warm all night.

When I went back a week later with The Boy, I left it behind (I thought it was overkill, the weather forecast being so good) and was the wrong side of comfortable in my Rab Quantum bag. I learned a lesson that night.

It also ties in with the whole lightweight ethos,
and I'm paraphrasing here; stuff you carry should do more than one thing. Something like that anyway. And within reason.

Anyhoo, it's so light and packs up so small that it'd be daft not to carry it. So, from now on, I'm gonnae.

Sunday, 5 October 2008

Warm Front

All this talk of snow, and our first frost, has had me rummaging in the wardrobe. Just the briefest of looks revealed a range of options for staying warm when the temperature drops and Jack Frost starts nipping at your lugs.

One of the first things I reach for at this time of year is a thin fleece. I practically live in Berghaus Yukons and one of them sometimes goes in the bag. A bit more technical, the Haglofs Triton Hood is a superb bit of kit and a firm favourite. I'd have 10 of these if I could but they've been dis-continued and you'll find hens teeth before you track one down.


One of the first synthetics I bought was the Berghaus Infinity Light and I've been using it for years. For something so light, it's surprisingly warm. The boxy cut means that it fits over over layers easily and the Pertex outer sheds snow and light rain like a bastard. There's no hood but I can live with that; I carry a Buff year-round.


Next up is the Montane Solo. Again discontinued (why, oh why???) and picked up in a clearance sale. Stupidly warm for the weight (think Poartec 300) and with just enough features to make it practically perfect. The Pertex roll-away hood is the cherry on the cake.


I've got 2 Haglofs Barrier Hoods. I used one all through last winter as an everyday outer layer and stayed warm, dry & comfy regardless of the weather. I can't fault it. At first glance, it looks a bit on the bulky side but it scrunches down into one of the pockets, nae bother. Lovely.


Being a Paramo fanboy, I sat up and took notice when they announced they were bringing out a couple of insulation pieces. Initial reports of weight and bulkiness issues meant that I hedged my bets and went for the Paramo Torres vest. I'm glad I did because it works very, very well indeed. Pack size is reasonable and the weight isn't that contentious. It doesn't give a monkey's how crap the weather is either. I like it a lot.


When the Montane Prism 2.0 came out, I nearly took Mr Fast&Light's hand off. Even the colour, a ferocious Alpine Red, couldnae stop me. I cannot wait to be sitting on a snowy summit, brew in hand, wrapped up in this puppy. It begs to be taken out on wintery adventures. And it shall my friends. Oh yes, it shall.