Category Archives: Kit and other stuff

One backpack just isn’t enough

Christmas has just come early for me in the shape of a new backpack.  Not everyone’s idea of an exciting purchase but it couldn’t be better for me. My trusty banana coloured Osprey (22 litre) daysack has experienced wintery showers and summer heat, ridges and trails, scrambles and even a few city shopping trips and never let me down but we have something in mind for next year (in its early planning stage) that means more litres are required!

Having this new purple 30 litre Osprey (women’s fit) should be just the trick.  Take a look at it and I’m sure you’ll agree – it’s a lovely bit of kit!

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Oh and the map its sitting on will be needed next year too – if all goes to plan.

I have suddenly felt sorry for my old pack so had to photograph that too – it still has a few miles left in it.

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These boots are made for…

Of all the clothing and gear we use today to enjoy our walking adventures my walking boots are, perhaps, the most important.  My newest boots are pink and I love them!

My home is Norfolk – a big flat county with big skies, beaches and lots of waterways.  We’ve done lots of walking here (as it’s nice & local!) but these pink boots were not made for marsh and sand, they were made for rocky ground.

For this we travel ‘up North'(and then West a bit) to the beautiful Cumbrian Mountains (called Fells) of the Lake District.  To an area that Tim and I have now been exploring extensively, on foot, since the early 1990s.  It’s a place that changed us.  A place where our choice of footwear became really quite important…..

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April 1995 – Wellington boots and trainers

We had no idea when we first went to the Lakes, on our very first exploration, which followed a path up onto higher ground.  We were following a route in Loweswater, which is a quiet spot in the western lakes, from a small guide book.  It was basically a circuit of the lake but included the romantically named ‘Darling Fell’.

It was Easter, the sun shone, lambs skipped in the valley, both lake and sky were beautifully blue in early spring sunshine.  The mountains to the south and east looked impressive but we only had a small climb to Darling fell summit.  The climb was worth it for the view.  However on the way down Tim split his new trainers and I really struggled in my wellies.  Walking got just a bit more difficult.

Darling Fell had fooled us.  Even a small hill can do that.

We eventually limped into The Loweswater Inn – our half way point.  The place was heaving with happy walkers all enjoying the local food & drink.  It was here that our eyes were opened to the world of well equipped (and booted) walker.  Smiling shiny faced people with maps and backpacks – we wanted to join that club!

Within a day or so we went to the shops to buy our first boots and we became smiling shiny faced people too.

Here is a photo of Loweswater with Darling Fell to the right of the lake.

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I have to add that there is nothing wrong with trainers or Wellington boots – just the terrain you use them in.