A few quick notes, mainly because if I don’t write them down, I’ll forget. Yes, I’m that old. Either that or my brain is just full.

On the clothing front, the Mammut Marangun is still going strong as the winter grab’n’go shell of choice. If it’s milder, the Rab Myriad is my preference, although I do have to sneak it out before K notices. The Kora baselayer is impressive and is now firmly first stop for winter outings. It’ll be too warm once the spring comes I reckon. I’ve been toying with some new mid layer insulation from Jottnar and Arc’teryx and I’ll write that lot up shortly. Likewise some rather splendid trousers from Fjallraven.

Footwear has been a bit variable. My usual light mids were swapped for proper old school big boots recently, and I’ve rediscovered some of the benefits in the snow, although my ankles weren’t entirely in agreement. There have also been something a little more in the middle ground from Teva.

My pack is still the Montane Medusa more often than not. It does fine, even for overnighters and it’s a comfy carry.   Recently it’s been stuffed with some new toys, an array of  tents from MSR and the Altair sleeping bag from Therm-a-rest. I’ll give you the low down on them s0on enough.

The Reactor stove still gets the thumbs up and it’s not just from me. I was having a brew behind a snowy boulder below the ridge last weekend when a frost clad bloke staggered down and suggested that the smell of my coffee was somewhat appealing (I’m paraphrasing here, his language was a wee bit more choice) He was suitably chuffed to discover that I had plenty spare. A fresh brew makes everything better and I’m old enough to realise that the smart play in terms of making your day go better is to have one in shelter before you go onto the windblown ridge and get sandblasted with ice crystals while you stare at your compass in the white room.

The Black Diamond Raven ultra axe (which is appears I haven’t ever written up) is still a grand choice for walking routes.  Light and sturdy at the same time. I’ve been trying out the new Shark crampons from Edelrid too (another reason the big boots were out) and I’ll pop a wee post up about them when I get it together.

There has been good stuff and plenty of it and there will be full reviews and write ups,  all in good time. This place has been very geary of late though, so it’s time to change tack for a spell.


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