Monday 24 May 2010

more new gear to come

It’s been far too long since I last blogged, and for that I am sorry. The thing is though, it’s all well and good reporting on every climbing trip, every day out walking etc etc, but in reality not many people are actually interested in reading how many ‘easy’ trad routes I did a week last Wednesday…I know I sometimes tend to get bored with other people’s blogs when I’m reading yet another trip report, unless of course something rather special or noteworthy happened on that trip (I’m sorry, but it’s true!) and so with that in mind I have taken the decision to refrain from posting quite so often (after all, I’m generally out at least 3 or 4 times a week, sometimes more).

I will, however, continue with my never-ending barrage of gear type blog entries, simply because the vast majority of people I know will happily read a gear review, or a post on DIY modifications, without becoming quite as disenchanted with life as they would reading my continuing stream of HVS ticks…

And so, we have another gear blog. There are a number of items I could talk about, so I will choose a few of the more ‘major’ purchases I have agonised over for weeks before making:

  • Alpkit Pipedream 400, my new 2-3 season down sleeping bag. Ok so it’s partly Phil’s too, as I begged him to help me buy it. At first glance it seems like a really rather nice piece of kit. It fits me well, without too much dead space (which does mean it would probably be quite a tight fit for someone of a larger stature than me), seems to be well made, packs remarkably small and will hopefully soon be tested out prior to use in the Alps as my bivi sleeping bag…
  • Black Diamond Venom Axe, 50cm. A new ice axe! And not a pair of Fusions or Nomics (that purchase will come later in the year). Yes, I have at long long last decided to buy a mountaineering axe – something altogether more suitable for easier Alpine routes requiring walking with an axe, than my beloved DMM Rebel Axe. I spent a very long time deciding which axe to go for – my short-list eventually coming down to the Grivel Airtch Evo, Petzl Summit, Petzl Sum’tec or the Black Diamond Venom. Having played with all of these axes in the shops, I very quickly decided I wanted the Black Diamond, and then proceeded to take several months to finally order the damned thing. Anyway, I have ordered one, and I will most likely post up a full review once I have used it.
  • Crappy closed cell foam sleeping mat. Yes I have a Therm-a-rest, and yes it is awesome and I love it, so why on earth have I been out and bought an 8 quid foam camping mat? Well for Alpine bivis of course! More to come on this, including my customisation works…

There are many more bits and pieces I would like to talk about, and probably will do, but the three I’ve mentioned here are items I will be talking about in greater depth in the future as I have high hopes for all of them. So, I’m sorry I haven’t got anything more interesting to say, but I have climbed 15-20 more routes since my last blog entry, accounts of which would almost certainly have been more boring than what I have written!

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