Kit List

It’s taken us a few years and lots of research to build up our kit, but we’ve now reached a place where we’re feeling really happy with our gear. Items have been bought for birthday and christmas presents as it can be expensive and quite overwhelming to try and get everything all in 1 go. We’ve come a long way since our first long distance hike along the West Highland Way in 2018 carrying huge bags! If you can get the weight right in your pack, it can make a very happy, joyful hiking experience even if it rains every day! 🙂 

Here’s a list of kit we took on our most recent long distance hike. The Coast To Coast was 190 miles over 14 days. 3 nights we treated ourselves to B&B’s and the rest we camped. We carried all our gear and here’s what we took:

  • Osprey 70L backpack + waterproof cover
  • Osprey 65L backpack + waterproof cover
  • 3L osprey water pack
  • 2L osprey water pack
  • 2 x OMM Go Pod shoulder strap pockets 
  • 1 x Black Diamond walking pole set 

  • MSR Hubba Hubba NX2 2 person tent 
  • MSR 2 person tent footprint groundsheet
  • MSR tent stake hammer 
  • 2 x Nemo Tensor Alpine Sleeping mats 
  • 2 x Nordisk Oscar + 10 sleeping bags
  • 2 x RAB silk mummy sleeping bag liners 

  • Jet Boil stove
  • 1 x gas canister
  • 1 x lighter
  • 2 x Steel mugs
  • 2 x sporks
  • Adventure Food pouches (we carried 5 days worth before topping up  for the remaining 9 days when we reached our car in Kirkby Stephen)
  • Hiking Boots x 2
  • Arizona Eva Birkenstock Sandals x 2 (the lightest on the market)
  • Clothes (1 outfit for hiking and 1 for sleeping) 
  • 2 x Trek Mate Waterproof ponchos
  • 1 x Regatta Waterproof trousers (1 pair for me)
  • gloves, scarf, wooly hat, sun hat, suncream, sunglasses etc
  • wash bag stuff (midge repellent essential!)
  • 2 x Nabaiji microfibre towels 
  • first aid kit 
  • 2 x head torches
  • kindle

After thoughts:

The Nordisk Oscar 10+ sleeping bag combined with the silk liner worked well for Rufino but I was so cold every night. Some nights I would wake up I was that cold (and that was sleeping in hat, scarf and 3 tops). One good thing was that I never had any trouble getting up early as wanted to get moving asap! But I would happily have sacrificed carrying more weight for a thicker sleeping bag and will only be using the 10+ sleeping bag again in warmer climates. 

The tent was new for this hike and was incredible. So easy to put up and take down and a joy to sleep in with bags of room for 2 people (bags of room in tent terms 😉 )

My osprey bag was also new for this hike. Rufino got his osprey in 2018 for our West Highland Way adventure whereas I was still using my Alpine 65 litre from 2008. A reliable and trusty bag but there’s no contest that the osprey pack is amazing. The technology of this bag is incredible. The back support system means you carry most of the weight on your hips rather than pulling on your shoulders. I was in love with my osprey bag an hour into day 1 and can’t wait for our next hike so I can use it again!

The OMM Go Pod shoulder strap pockets attach onto each of your bag straps and are super handy for putting easy to grab things like your phone, tissues, jelly babies etc. However because I was so in love with my new osprey bag and all the pockets it had to offer, I didn’t feel like I needed my OMM Go Pod’s. Rufino found his very useful though and would highly recommend. 

The Black Diamond walking poles we bought on route. On day 3 I sprained my ankle at the top of a mountain in the Lake District. We ascended down and hobbled into Grasmere where we bought the poles. Before this I was skeptical of hiking poles and questioned how useful they are… Well, I know realise how wrong I was! They are brilliant and enabled us to finish the hike. Now I don’t go hiking without my poles and highly recommend for long distance hiking, especially if carrying a heavy pack.

All the kit laid out before packing…

The start of the journey at St Bees. This is our 4th long distance hike and my backpack has NEVER looked this small:

Rufino relaxing in the shade on day 10. You can get a good idea of the size of packs from the photo:

Storm Ciara says NO

So today we were really up for a hike but the weather had other ideas. I don’t know why we were surprised, people had been saying the storm was coming like the Northerners waiting for Winter in Game Of Thrones season 1.

Yesterday was the day for getting out. It was lush but I had a pyjama day & Rufino went to work for a few hours. Quite random for us, but sometimes that’s just the way it is! I was touring in a show Thursday & Friday and had a severe post show hangover so lying down and eating was my priority for the day. But to make up for missing yesterdays glorious weather we did some great watching instead. Yep we ventured outdoors through the vicarious adventures of others… 🙂

Yesterday we watched Extreme Everest with Ant Middleton. Rufino enjoys SAS & finds Ant Middleton hilarious & I have enjoyed his other documentaries such as Mutiny. Whilst really enjoying Ant & his tough love ways, this channel 4 doc didn’t fully satisfy but rather was the starter to our main meal: Kilian Journet, path to Everest. If you’ve not seen this I highly recommend it. The guy is incredible & super human. I really enjoy the dynamic between him & his partner Emelie Forsberg (also a total bad ass babe) and how they come across on screen. They’re really humble & seem like lovely people. I first saw this documentary a few years ago when Rufino took me to see Mountains On Stage when they came to Sheffield. I wasn’t bothered about this event at first because I didn’t know what to expect. Turns out it’s blooming great. All the documentaries were top quality & beautifully crafted. I came out buzzing & rewatching the Kilian Journet doc on Saturday was just as good the second time around.

Today we moved onto Ode To Muir: The High Sierra. The mountains & scenery here are breath taking. I’ve never been skiing or snowboarding & it’s not an outdoors activity that appeals to me but I love watching footage of people carving down a mountain side. The views from these mountain tops are beautiful as well. I’ve heard quotes from John Muir, the legendary naturalist, author, environmental philosopher & all round outdoors geezer but never knew who he was. I still don’t really and would like to read one of his books very soon.

Basically we like to watch any outdoors documentary on the red bull channel to give us inspiration for our next adventure. It was a good resting weekend & we’ll look forward to getting back out into the outdoors next week.

Hope everyone stayed safe in the storm today whether in or out 🙂