Equipment and Accessories

 

Leki Makalou Walking Poles

For some reason I only started using walking poles five years into my walking career by which time I'd started to notice a dull ache coming from my right hip when on long drives and I didn't quite realise what was causing it. I later learned that by not using walking poles I was putting extra pressure on my leading hip which was causing my discomfort. Weeks later I'd purchased my first walking pole which came in the form of the Leki Makalou and hey presto the dull ache disappeared and from that day I wouldn't leave the house for the fells without a set of walking poles in my boot.


 

Black Diamond Trail Trekking Poles.

Since the beginning of 2014 I started to walk using two poles from leaving the car park to returning to it sometime later, I hadn’t really quite grasped just how much using two poles can help not just with steep descents but steep ascents too (stands to sense really) The Black Diamond Trail Poles were this time bought as a pair, the upper grip is a narrow shaft of foam which isn’t as comfortable as the Leki Makalou but when held as a pair after a short time walking it's hard to tell the difference. A key feature to the Black Diamond Trail Poles are that they are handed with a handy L & R on each wrist loop, this is because the wrist loop drops neatly into each hand without twisting or leaving your thumbs feeling uncomfortable.


Leki Softlite Walking Poles
The newest addition to my collection of walking these are the poles that I'm currently using in 2019. I must admit I do prefer clamp adjustment which seem to be a thing of the past rather than the telescopic extendable type. The Softlite are a sturdy tungsten tip pole complete with soft feel handles. The straps are adjusted, as are most Leki poles by lifting the head of the handle with the excess strap which then allows easy adjustment.

 

Grivel Monte Rosa New Classic Crampon.
Imperative for safe climbs over snow and hard ice the Grivel Crampon is the leader amongst expeditions the world over.

 

Mountain Equipment Alpine Gaiter
The Mountain Equipment Alpine Gaiter was given to as a gift back in 2014 and I've used them every Winter all the way through to 2018 with only the odd repair required. The recommended time to use gaiters is when hiking in snow or during wet conditions or as extra leg protection when using crampons as the gaiter not only keeps the lower leg free from snow but also protects trousers from cuts and tears that crampons can cause. Constructed from a three membrane layer the Alpine is tough, robust and waterproof leg gaiter, a must for all serious fell walkers.

 

Rab Hispar Gaiter
Awaiting review.

 

Grivel Mont Blanc S.A
The Nepal S.A. is a non-technical ice axe ideal for trekking and classic snow climbs. The carbon-steel head features a classically inclined pick with teeth along half its length. The body and pick have been drop forged into one piece before the stamped shovel is welded to it. The Ergal shaft surpasses UIAA norms for strength and durability. It is coated with red, epoxy-based paint.

 

Camelbak 2ltr Hydration System

The 2ltr Camalbak hydration bladder pack is possibly the best hydration pack on the market, expect to pay £20.00 plus, yes they are expensive but you do get great value and a life long warranty, described as indestructible I have had my Camelbak for two years without a problem from the bladder itself although I have replaced the bite valve once and added a stop valve to avoid leakage.


Gelert Survival Bottle
This handy bottle was purchased as a novice fell walker and I've upgraded many items inside, luckily however, I've never had to use it and I hope I never have too!

Gelert Double Lightweight Survival Bag
This essential survival bag has been with me from the start of my walking career and it tends to just get swapped from pack to pack whenever I need to, thankfully, as above, I've never had to use.

Silva Field Compass
Oddly I only learned how to use a compass well into my walking career by which time I was comfortable with walking the Lakeland fells in all weathers, due to lack of use I tend to give myself brush up lessons at home ready for if ever I need to use it in the field. An essential piece of kit every fell walker should learn how to use when out fell walking.

Petzl Tactikka Head Torch
The Petzl Tactikka is one of my original items of kit I've had from the very start. I suspect with advancing technology the more modern head torch will shine much brighter than the single L.E.D that the Tactikka boasts but it does the job and the batteries seem to last forever. Another essential item of kit no fell walker should leave the house without.

Snow Goggles by SINNER

Purchasing snow goggles was never something that had occurred to me, it was as simple as keep your head down and walk the spin drift out. I had the opportunity to purchase a pair of snow ogggles from my local Go outdoor store without wanting to pay through the nose I settled for a pair of entry level goggles which cost just £20.00

It was only did I encounter fierce winds and spin drift during December 2014 while on Helvellyn did I realise just how well my new snow goggles helped me as winds approached 65mph across the summit tops, it was here did I realise that my £20.00 purchase was possibly the best money I'd spent on gear for a long time as the protection they offered was second to none with increased visibility which also aided with reading a map or GPS


 

Bloc Billy Sunglasses.
I would be lost without my Billy’s during the Summer and indeed during the Winter months when the sun is low. I’m currently on my third pair now after leaving the previous two on St Sunday Crag’s summit back in 2010 and the other pair I left behind after a mammoth hike over the Scafells back in 2011

SINNER Cat 3 Cayo Mens Sunglasses
With the Bloc Billy's a distant memory I upgraded my eyewear to a pair of light and durable Sinner Cayo sunglasses. Two lenses are available with either red or orange, I opted for orange which I feel suit everyday use.

Lifesystems Sterile First Aid Kit
A must for any fell walker keeping your first aid kit updated is as important as keeping the kit itself. Check the kit every few weeks and make sure it's nice and dry inside, plasters and bandages tend to have a long shelf life but once damp/wet it's best to replace straight away. An essential piece of kit for anyone hitting the fells.