Sunday, May 10

Gear mania strikes again

A couple of weeks ago I semi seriously came up with the idea of Outdoor Gear Anonymous.

Well - "I am an Outdoor Gear Junky"

There. I've said it out loud.

You'd think with 22+ OS maps (not including some very old prints collected along the way) I've got enough.

But earlier today I laid out my Lake District OS maps to check I had the correct maps for the trip. It was then I realised I'd need all 4 maps.

Crikey! The weight is a bit over the top for the use I'll be making of them.

Falling back on my Harvey 1:40000 Lake District BMC Mountain map isn't an option. Great as it is for a route overview and walking distance it doesn't have the level of detail to spot the water sources I'll need for wildcamping.

So, on-line to check if the OS have finally decided to slim down their Lake District folios to double sided/fuller coverage. No joy - still 4 sheets for the area. But instead I discovered Harvey's Superwalker 1:25,000 range which offers the same coverage, but also includes one for Lakeland Central.

So that's another purchase then. Courtesy of Mapkiosk which if their service is as good as their price (free P&P!) I'll be back to in the future.

Its far too easy to spend money on kit without leaving the house these days.

Did I mention the Rab Microfleece ordered during the week, which arrived the following day?


Err - that must have been an oversight on my part. Honest.

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That's where I find mapping software incredibly good:- print A4 sheets double sided and put them in an Ortlieb mapcase. I'm off to the Lakes for a couple of days tomorrow, just 3 sheets of mapping, 20-odd grams.
With so little paper inside the Ortlieb easily rolls up and fits in a crevice in the external pack pocket.
I love MemoryMap; it the best purchase I didn't make (my son acquired a copy) and we've the whole of the UK covered. For day walks I like to print one or two 1:50,000 or 1:25,000 A4 sheets covering the walk and carry these folded in my pocket.

We always carry the relevant OS sheets too (we've over 100 ranging from 30 to 2 years old). These usually stay in the bottom of DH's rucksack and are there in case the printed sheet gets blown away; to settle "What's that hill over there?" type discussions; and in case we need to split up and return separately for whatever reason.
Mmmhhh, a severe case of gear-itus me thinks. Now I have to admit, 22+plus maps seems a tad on the low side of things, try 100 plus. Oh and mentioning gear, I have dug out a couple of original stoves, as mentioned over on my blog. great fun having petrol stoves purring away on the draining board.
You definately need some digital mapping before you can seriously be considered a gear junkie :-)

Instead of a spare map, I photograph the A4 sheets and these can then be viewed on the capera screen at more then full size. Not easy to use, but OK for an emergency

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