Saturday 27 June 2015

The Great Outdoors July edition: Continental Divide Trail & Backpacking Tents

Rest stop on the Continental Divide Trail in Montana, 1985

The July issue of The Great Outdoors is in the shops now. My backpacking column is about the Continental Divide Trail, which I was hiking thirty years ago (see this post for more pictures). Looking at my CDT journal I see that on this day, June 27, in 1985 I was in the Helena National Forest in Montana and I walked 15 miles from one woodland camp to another, passing the 350 mile mark - so still early on in the 3100 mile walk.

In the gear pages I review ten of the latest backpacking tents. Elsewhere in this section mountaineering instructor Kirk Watson looks at some kit for serious scrambling - ropes, harnesses, protection, helmet, footwear - and Daniel Neilson tries the new Berghaus Light Speed Hydroshell waterproof jacket.

Also in this issue there's a report on this year's TGO Challenge (2015 saw the 8000th crossing and age ranges of Challengers from 22 to 85), plus suggestions for thirty-three adventures in Britain ranging from the Cuillin Ridge Traverse and backpacking the Pennine Way to building an igloo (with a picture of me sitting on one on the Moine Mhor in the Cairngorms). Ronald Turnbull follows in the steps of poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge's night-time walk over Helvellyn in 1800; David Lintern describes his recent coast to coast trip via Scotland's highest peaks by foot and packraft; and Max Landsberg hikes the Alpine Pass Route in Switzerland. Back in Britain Ian Battersby suggests a leisurely approach to the Three Peaks of Yorkshire; Carey Davies finds nature in a sliver of woodland in Manchester; and Roger Smith worries about litter. In his Hillwalker's Library column Jim Perrin writes about William Holgate's Arka Tagh: The Mysterious Mountains, a book and mountain range I have to admit to not knowing about before. I shall certainly look for the book as it sounds entertaining and in the vein of Eric Newby's A Short Walk in the Hindu Kush. In the Hill Skills pages there's advice on hillwalking in the Alps from Nancy Chambers of Glenmore Lodge, guidebook writer and trek leader Kev Reynolds, and guide Hilary Sharp, plus a brief look at alpine flowers from Gillian Price, author of Cicerone Press's Alpine Flowers.

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