Saturday, 10 April 2010

tgo challenge 2010 - kit dilemma

The dilemma comes from having too many choices...

The Scarp1 was bought as a solo backpack shelter, with the Challenge in mind. However its pack size is at odds with the size/type of rucksacks that I own due to the support poles at either end. It's just too long a bundle. I wrote to Henry Shires and asked whether the poles could be removed and he stated that the central two poles can be left out being attached by velcro, and there were slits for the corner ones. He also mentioned that he didn't think it was worth the effort. Having tinkered around with this, I can only agree.

One solution would be to buy another rucksack, and I'm considering the 2010 Golite Jam. The Golite Peak has served me well over the last few months, so the Jam, the bigger brother of the Peak seems a natural choice.

Another alternative is to resort to my tried and tested shelter, the Golite Hut2. With this in mind I've seam sealed it for added weatherproofing. The benefits of using Jabba (the Hut, geddit?!) are that it pitches with the trekking poles that I'll be using, and I'll be packing a bivibag, which will be useful should I find myself taking shelter in a bothy or similar. And, of course, the much smaller pack size of a single skin shelter.

The more I deliberate the more I like the more flexible approach of using Jabba...


Alan Sloman said...

Hi Baz - The only advice I would give (not that I think you need any!) would be to think of your worst ever night in a tent backpacking and plan to take the shelter that would cope with that.

There would be nothing worse to wake up on, say Day 3 morning, in torrential rain, soaked through and sleepless from the previous night, with another 11 days of it to come.

There has been numerous examples over the years on the Challenge of folk just having had enough of it!

Your shelter system must also be able to cope with pitching on completely saturated ground in the pouring rain.

You need a good night's sleep, secure in your shelter, whatever the weather throws at you.

This does not mean to say that tarps aren't up to the job - Colin Ibbotson and others fare really well in atrocious conditions in theirs - You have to make that judgement call yourself.

Also - one other consideration - the midge: Beware!

Hope to see you in Braemar. Good luck Baz!

baz carter said...

Soggy ground and midges; I've got a head net and some Skin So Soft, but as I'm struggling getting the Scarp1 in my rucksack, I'm surely not going to have room for a kayak :)

I may toss a coin on the 12th and hope to see you in Breamar; dry and bite free... or otherwise.

Anonymous said...

Hi Baz, just back from the Carneddau testing the Scarp. Well not much of a test by the weather, but it's a really fab tent and feels really strong, even without the crossing poles (more on my blog later). The Scarp fits neatly into the large side net pocket on my Gossamer Gear Mariposa Plus. IMV the Mariposa is the best and most comfortable rucksack I've owned by a country mile. The basic sack weighs 600g. To that you need to add a foam back pad. The GG Sitlight pad weighs about 30g. I use nylon stays, but it now ships with an aluminium yoke, which looks good. The pack seems to expand and contract with the volume of gear. It is truly a TARDIS. I can't recommend it highly enough. Winwood don't seem to have them in stock, but if you get in touch with Grant Sible of GG, I'm sure they would get a sack to you in time. Personally I would take the Scarp on the Challenge, especially as a first timer as it's a shelter that you can rely on.

Martin Rye said...

Scarp is a solid are sure shelter. Hence why I wrote recently if I was on the Challenge it would be coming along. All I can say is I have spent many nights on walks in Scotland tent bound in bad weather. Night after night sometimes and room to move about makes for a more enjoyable trip.

baz carter said...

Having read Martin's post on his new rucksack I'm resigned to the fact that if I pack the Scarp1 I'll need a new bag, or pack the Exos in another way :) said...