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Winfields Megastore would like to thank Adventure Scot for this article.
May 23rd 2010
So it’s been one week since I completed the coldest and monstrous cluster of rock that is Mount Kosciuszko! In
Australia, still shaking and feeling the bitterness stings of the cold I endured so high up into the heavens and yet, I find myself facing a bigger conquest, the feelings that swell in your stomach and try to claw its way out of your mouth can only be one thing…nausea.
Why you ask? Because just two weeks from now I’ll be tackling the
Appalachian Trial (yes not much of a rest period) an expanding wilderness and beautiful stretch of landscape of 2,178 miles (ouch), I’m sure it will be a breathless sight, quite literally as how Kosciuszko was all that way up.
The key I find to these endeavours is preparation; no matter what challenges you behold, being prepared keeps you calm, relaxed and ready.
For me as well as your food provisions and other pieces of equipment, I find what you wear helps provide a greater chance of success, I opted for the best protective clothing around, before scaling Kosciuszko I carried along with me some Ski Wear just in case I found a place or two to have some fun, I had the full range from Craghoppers Jackets to Regatta Fleeces as well as Helly Hansen Base Layer clothing, great value for money and excellent protection from the elements.
I find mixing brands gives you the best of what they have to offer whether it is Regatta Clothing or Trespass Clothes etc, and for the all important cool look I went with Eyelevel Sunglasses.
I made sure I equipped myself with thermal socks, Balaclava and goggles, yes I looked like the abdominal snowman but I was so well protected and warm I didn’t have to worry about the cold or wind and could enjoy the sites Kosciuszko opens to you, you sometimes see the trees covered in a sleek blanket of snow that makes the landscape quiet and beautiful, well compared, you could drop to your knees and awe in its spectacular spectacle it provides.
It’s just like knowing and planning your route, knowing and planning what Ski Wear or Hiking Clothing to take on these trips is vital, once you complete one of these challenges you find yourself addicted and want to do more but above all else it’s the exciting prospect of danger that adds to the experience.
To say I climbed 2,228 meters into the sky makes me swell with pride and feeling like superman but without the cape I would mention some of the dangers I faced and doubts that wrapped my mind but it would only put you off and everyone approaches things differently, for you to experience it take it on yourself!
May 30th 2010
One week to go! Before the Appalachian Trial presents itself, now I’ve been going over everything I can think of insuring I’m prepared and well equipped to tackle this stretch of wilderness hoping to get glimpses of the wildlife that’s inhabit its surroundings, foods prepared and travel… all that’s needed now is clothing, I’ve mentioned before I like mixing my brands, now it’s important to consider the weather or situations you might not expect so I always bring and extensive range of clothing; comfy and thick Craghoppers jackets and trousers to Regatta Body warmers bearing in mind that on long hikes it could get extremely warm so improvising is what works for me.
It’s always important to look after your feet since you’ll be using them constantly and for long period of hours, Especially with me since my feet blister badly and have me fumbling clumsily everywhere, I always use thick socks and it’s a good idea to wear you Hiking boots down a few week before you start walking, i.e. walk around in them at home so your boots shape to your feet.
I get alot from Regatta because they have a great range of thick and Thermal socks to choose from as well as hiking boots, it’s always important to bring waterproof clothing as nature can’t be trusted or predicted and often tends to shower you when things get hard and you curse it quietly.
Preparing yourself mentally and physically will also help you overcome any obstacles that present itself, put some bricks or heavy items into your backpack and keep it on at home for an hour or so getting you used to the weight before you embark (don’t worry you won’t look weird).
Gelert Backpacks and Vango Backpacks I find are perfectly adequate for the job, durable and strong with many pouches for accessories and food, perfect for those long hikes.
Always remember to do anything to keep your morale high, whether it’s a warm fire or nice memory, some food or just simply telling yourself you won’t fail and that nothing beats you.
These small pieces of advice won’t help the veterans amongst us climbers, but for those starting new they can help.
So time to get my clothing arranged and sorted, I’m rested and ready for another outdoor adventure.