Tuesday, 13 October 2009

monitor audio br5 speakers

"Not your usual lightweight kit," Ramblin' Jay stated when she heard that I was picking up a pair of floor standing speakers from some where else in Reading after depositing me at Sainbury's after our weekend trip out with the Backpackers Club.

And indeed they aren't. These slim built cherry wood finished speakers weigh 23kg a piece so you won't be seeing these stuffed in a rucksack. Although I wish that I could take the sheer sound quality that these pair manage. The Arcam/Monitor Audio pairing is a marriage made in audio heaven. Bi-amped, the speakers offer unrivalled definition, clarity and articulation of whatever genre of music the CD player wants to throw at them. And unlike the B&W stand mounts that they replace they aren't tiring on the ears. I've listened to them for hours at a go and enjoyed the closing bars of the last track as much as I did the opening ones of the first - with a huge grin on my face throughout.

This leaves me with a dilemma; do I use my spare time listening to music or getting out on the hills...

Monday, 5 October 2009

cowboy tv dinners

Arranging this coming weekends trip I rashly promised to bring Bush Buddy along because Ramblin' Jay was bring her Bushbaby. At the time this looked to be a grand idea; we could while away the evening watching our ultralight versions of the cowboy TV, perhaps toasting something or making popcorn to go with a noggin or two of Scotland's Finest. And to milk the situation for every drop of bushcraft experience I was going leave the usual suspects of the Wasabi or Jabba at home and pack a tarp.

Then the weather happened and I realised that I needed to find a way of pitching the tarp in a more weatherproof way than the lean-to stylee that is my preferred way of putting the tarp up. A flying vee would work but there wasn't any guarantee that there'd be a tree and space to pitch the tarp in the desired position to shed the wind/rain. As my tarp came from BPL I took a look and there was one pitched in the cave or pyramid stylee; using two trekking poles, the tarp has three edges to the ground - ideal.

Cave or pyramind stylee

So I set to and put the tarp up in day light, then in several shades of dusk and twilight, and finally in the dark with the aid of a head torch. It was quite blustery on Saturday morning so I pitched it again to see how it stood up and to checkout the living space.

More than enough space for one

This is a very stable configuration and I expect it to keep the weather off. I could sleep with my feet towards the opening as there's enough clearance at the closed end for my head. I can sit up under the tarp at the open end and cook with the Bush Buddy, and there's enough room should a visitor wish to call. Roll on Friday evening :)