Sunday 8 March 2015

Latest The Great Outdoors: Ethics of Wild Camping & Trekking Poles

The April issue of The Great Outdoors is in the shops now. My backpacking column covers the ethics of wild camping and minimum impact techniques. In the gear pages I review eleven pairs of trekking poles.

Also in gear Judy Armstrong looks at six women's softshell jackets and Daniel Neilson tries the Ecco Biom Trail FL shoes, which sound excellent. Daniel also gives a run down of the most interesting new gear he saw at the ISPO show in February.

The issue starts with the now usual set of enticing double-page photographs, three very different ones this time - David Lintern's atmospheric Lake District shot from Great Gable, Dougie Cunningham's dramatic rocky image of Bla Bheinn from Marsco on the Isle of Skye and Geoff Barton's colourful summer meadow picture taken near Edale in the Peak District. Geoff has been the TGO designer for quite some time. This is his last issue. He'll be missed.

Also in this issue The Great Outdoors has teamed up with the European Outdoor Conservation Association and readers can be involved in choosing which of six conservation project gets funding this year. In the Highlands Hanna Lindon tackles the splendid and challenging Aonach Eagach and Stefan Durkacz walks the 290-mile River Tay Watershed. Much further afield Daniel Neilson takes on the scary looking via ferrata to the Zugspitze, Germany's highest mountain, and Steve Bull goes backpacking in the Hornstrandir region of Iceland. I know which of those two adventures I'd prefer! Carey Davies is also abroad in his Mountain Magic column, exploring the countries of the Mediterranean. Meanwhile down in England, right down in England in the flatlands south and east of the hills, Edoardo Albert finds some surprisingly wild places. Away from walking trips Roger Smith considers the important role of local communities and conservation and Jim Perrin praises Heart's Desire by Edward Hoagland, an author but not a book I've heard about before.

Finally in the Hill Skills pages Mark Gilligan gives advice on photographing sunrise and sunset, doctors Jim Duff and Peter Gormly give a protocol for outdoor accidents and Tim Gent gives tips on loading a canoe for a camping trip.

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