TGO challenge 2014 – Final Gear List

pack-ula-circuit

Not to be left out, here finally after a bit of tinkering is my Gear List for the TGO.

I’ve optimistically assumed the sun will have his hat on when I set out from Strathcarron on the 9th May,  so shell jacket, gaitors, gloves, hat and windshirt etc will all be in the pack. So the total base weight is really a worst case.

Most of the  stuff here will be all too familiar, and as with everyone’s lists it’s very much a personal choice after many years finding out what works for me.

 

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Heights of the Berwyns – 2 day trek

DSC00488My final overnighter before the TGO took me to the Berwyns in Wales, for a 34 mile (55 km) overnight trek taking in the main high points of the range;  Cadair Berwyn 830 metres (2,723 ft) , Moel Sych  827 metres (2,713 ft) and Cadair Bronwyn 784 metres (2,572 ft) .

The Berwyns are a favourite of mine. Being far less popular than their Snowdonia neighbours, there’s few better places within easy reach on a bank holiday weekend to get away from the crowds and have the mountains all to yourself. Once away from the valley bottom I met only two people in the hills over the two days. Bliss.

 

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TGO Challenge 2014 Gear : Trials, tribulations and the art of cloning

Choices

Almost there with my final gear choice for the TGO this year, but one or two items have been giving the grey cells a bit of a work out, not least of which is which shelter and boots to take. And in my search for a couple of items I’ve noticed a bit of gear cloning creeping in from the Far East, some of which potentially offer some budget options.

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TGO training : They Went Up Like Men! They Came Down Like Animals!

Being born lacking either the sports spectator or the TV repeat enthusiasts gene, I don’t need too much encouragement to remove my carcass from the couch for a spot of exercise. The thought of a training schedule however will normally have me inventing some excuse for avoidance, like the urgent need to rearrange my sock drawer.

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Gear I will not be taking on the TGO 2014

Daletrekker Sombrero - my first backpacking tent 34 years ago

Daletrekker Sombrero – my first backpacking tent 34 years ago

Before I could spend too much time deliberating, cogitating and digesting all the gear options for this years TGO challenge, a grainy old photo (discovered while writing my About me page) leapt out to give me a much needed reality check and kick up the derrière.

Taken 32 years ago when I was a fledgling 15 year old backpacker, it showed all my kit laid out ready for the Pennine Way in 1982. Continue reading

TGO Challenge 2014 – Heading south to scratch an itch

I can always rely on my wife to ask a question for which I don’t have a ready made sensible answer, even though I know that’s all she wants.

The first 4 days of my route.

The first 4 days of my route.

Recently she’s been asking why I appear to be heading south for four days at the start of my TGO route when the east coast of Scotland lies…well, in the east ? Am I just being difficult as usual ?

So for the sake of completeness I’d probably better explain, but bear in mind that she didn’t buy this  reason either. Especially as my pathetic attempt at an answer started with ‘Well it all started 30 years ago…’ Continue reading

TGO Challenge 2014 – Vetters comments back. Our survey says WET !

Well the Vetter’s comments about my suggested route are back, and it looks as though I could have picked a drier route underfoot in Waterworld.

Selected comments from different days include;

  • the open ground can be very wet as you will be crossing a flood plain
  • can after periods of rain be very wet and boggy
  • prone to be very wet and boggy
  • it IS wet and boggy
  • can become flooded………

So let’s get this straight, what I appear to have planned is a 200 mile walk through this !

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TGO Challenge 2014 – my Route Sheets submitted

Well after months of deliberation, routing, re-routing and laptop crashes I just made the deadline for submitting my Route Sheets for the TGO 2014.

As a TGO newbie I think I badly underestimated the number of evenings I thought I’d need to get the pre-planning done. I mean, how hard could it be I thought. I get the train up to some place on the west coast of Scotland, turn to face roughly east and then put one foot after another for about 200 miles until the land runs out and your feet get a briny wash.

Yeah right !   Continue reading