Friday 5 February 2016

Winter backpacking, floods, ice axes & crampons, portable rechargers: the March issue of The Great Outdoors

The latest issue of The Great Outdoors is in the shops now with a theme of Scotland in Winter. With that in mind my backpacking column is about winter backpacking in the Highlands and I review five ice axes and five pairs of crampons.

Continuing the Scottish winter theme David Lintern describes a three-day, tough-sounding, snowy trip in the Highlands, illustrated with some dramatic pictures; and Will Copestake tells of the even tougher challenges of the Cairngorms in winter during his amazing self-propelled year-long journey round Scotland.

Also snowy though not Scottish are Stewart Smith on photographing a Lake District winter with, of course, some wonderful images, and Hilary Sharp describing snowshoe trips in the Alps. The Hill Skills pages are devoted to the serious topic of avalanches - essential reading for any snowy hills.

Elsewhere in this issue I write about the devastating floods earlier in the winter and how we can find out about the damage they did to bridges and paths and how we can support the communities involved; Karen Lloyd describes a walk to Piel Island off the coast of Cumbria; Carey Davies goes far from the snow to India's Western Ghats; Roger Smith thinks about the importance of trees and reviews the latest edition of Hugh Westacott's The Walker's Handbook; and Jim Perrin is moved by The Great Soul of Siberia by Sooyong Park. In the gear pages I review five portable rechargers and Will Renwick has a First Look at the Rab Nebula insulated jacket.

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