December 3, 2021

Why should my advice mean anything?

Online reviews are 10 a penny. Why add one more?

Yellowstone backcountry. 400mm lens under the lid hoping for wildlife

Well, I got sick of seeing either videos of pristine kit being fetishised or reproductions of press releases. When I’m investigating kit, I want to know how it fairs in the real world of rough use and abuse. Other than a small number of blogs (list to come), I found good advice hard to come by. So, I thought I’d try my hand.

Happiness is an open fire and a Snow Peak titanium mug of wine

And why should you trust me? Well, I’ve worn and tried a wide range of kit, everything from Paramo and Buffalo to Berghaus. I’ve run expeditions to the Arctic and I’ve rock climbed and ice climbed in Europe and the US. I’ve skied, ski toured and mountain biked and boke packed. I’ve run mountain marathons, trails and and road marathons. I’ve sailed, scuba dived and surfed. I’ve spent weeks backpacking unsupported in the western highlands of Scotland.

I’ve also worked in 3 different outdoor shops (albeit around 15 years ago) and used to know a lot of manufacturers directly through that so I’ve scratched the surface of the industry and have a rough idea of how works. I’ve spent a few years around the military (army) as well and have made the issue kit/gucci kit decisions for myself. I’ll talk a bit more about my priorities for kit in a future post so you can know where I’m coming from with my thinking.

The beginning of an epic 40kg carry. Arc’teryx Khyber 80 with a 30L bag under the lid for extra volume. We were escaping a storm which hit around 5 hours later as we neared the hut we were running away to hide in. Gamma trs and jkt with a Patagonia R1 hoody (amazing) underneath.

I hope you find the blog useful.

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