Wednesday 5 March 2014

Latest edition of The Great Outdoors - Backpacking in the Lakes with Terry Abraham and lots of gear reviews

Terry Abraham filming the Scafells

The April issue of The Great Outdoors is out now. I've contributed a piece on my backpacking and filming trip in the Lake District with Terry Abraham plus a selection of individual lightweight gear reviews including the latest version of GoLite's Jam 50 pack and Primus's new Eta Lite stove.

Also in the gear pages Daniel Neilson selects some interesting new gear from the recent ISPO show in Munich and reviews eight pairs of ultralight trail shoes while John Manning looks at seven lightweight waterproofs. Away from new gear there's an interesting feature on what happens to items donated to Gift Your Gear.

As usual these days the issue starts with some dramatic double-page landscape pictures, of which I particularly like Dougie Cunningham's dawn shot of Trotternish on Skye. This dramatic area is covered again later in the magazine in a feature by Hanna Linden. Further south in the Lake District Vivienne Crow describes remnants of the area's industrial past still to be found in the fells. Away north, far far north, Cat Scully visits the spectacular Lofoten and Vesteralen in Arctic Norway. Also looking far away is Jim Perrin, who praises Ed Douglas's excellent Chomolumgma Sings The Blues in his Hillwalkers' Library column.

Back in Britain Daniel Neilson visits the Ordnance Survey and discusses the appeal of maps in a fascinating article, Alec Forss describes a five-day backpacking trip in the Cambrian Mountains in the heart of Wales, Carey Davies looks at threats to the human heritage of our National Parks and Roger Smith is concerned about the role of government conservation bodies.

The Hill Skills pages look at caring for sleeping bags, terrain traps and avalanche danger (the huge amount of snow in the Scottish hills, which could last for a few more months, means this 'winter' advice is still relevant), dog walking in lambing season, keeping safe near water, the various 'norths' used in navigation and spotting planets.

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