Wednesday, 26 March 2008
I have used this pack on one trip last winter in Australia, I used it with the 50 litre dry bag and the 2 aluminium stays for a complete weight of 1100 gms. What attracted me to this pack were two things, one it is made by ULA in Utah, a well respected pack maker and the dry bag would enable it to be carried in wet conditions without the need for a liner. In both aspect I was not disappointed. It did rain on the Prom during my visit and everything inside my pack was dry. Other aspects which I came to appreciate were the excellent hip belt pockets, the comfort of the carry, I had about 12 kg when loaded. The usefulness of the front pocket, the ability to compress the dry sack and let the air out at the bottom, thereby reducing the volume.
There is however, an art to pack this pack, the obvious is to treat it the same as a normal pack and load from the top with the pack sitting vertically, because of its design I found this method not very successful, instead I laid it on it frame and filled it that way with light items at the bottom and heavier items in the middle and so on. This was much more effective.
I personally would like to have some more outside pockets so I am looking at adding side pockets, which I think will also add some sideways stability to the pack when loading it.
This is a specialist pack and I will only use it when I am expecting a wet trip or when I am going to damp environments, such as Lapland.
Wednesday, 12 March 2008
I started the trail at Bøgeskov Havn, it was a gloomy grey day but no rain. The start of the trail is well marked and points you west along a sandy trail before taking you on to the beach after about 300 meters. A walk along the pebble-covered beach eventually leads you to a sheer cliff into the sea, it is now that you will get wet feet, if you have not already. For me the tide was in and the seas calm so the depth was no more than 30 cm. There were 2 sections the first being 50 meters the second 150 meters. I was glad to be on dry pebble covered beach again. Soon after at Kulstirenden the trail turned inland.
After first following a farm trail through the cliffs and then farmland the trail follows small roads onto Holtug Mosevj. These quiet country lanes make for pleasant walking and all junctions are well marked, ultimately the trail turns towards the cliffs just prior to Stevns Nature Center. Following the cliff trail soon takes you to the back of the nature centre which was to be my home for the night. According to the booklet, Overnatning i det fri, there is a shelter and a toilet, but no water. There is however, a tap outside and a hand basin inside. As well there is a shelter and some tents sites both of which are protected by some small pines. The shelter would sleep no more than 6 persons. Nearby is a DMI weather radar and in the building below it there is an excellent display the flora, fauna and history of the area. As well there is an excellent lookout tower providing views of the sea, farmlands and the neighbouring chalk pit at Stevns. During my stay the plant operated all night, with a ship arriving to collect a load a chalk. The sound however, was in no way intrusive, and along with the constant hum of the raider provided a interesting contrast to the bird song.
Morning arrived with a much more pleasant outlook, the potential for a good day evident in the sunrise.
Leaving Flagbanken, the trail firstly follows the cliff tops before heading in land as it skirts the chalk pit. After travelling away from the sea and then parallel to it turns back towards the sea and finally rejoins the cliff tops less than a kilometre from where it left. By now the clouds had cleared and the white cliffs dipping into the blue and turquoise sea provided the backdrop for the remainder of the day. The walk is now a cliff top walk that follows the cliff tops whilst meandering around the farms, as the Stevns guide explains this is a trampsti and as such is the trail is constructed by persons walking along it, as well the trampsti exists through the cooperation of the surrounding landowners and therefore users should be aware of their obligations as they walk.
Aside from the outstanding views of the sea and cliffs the next point of interest was Stevns Fyr. The lighthouse stands atop of the cliffs which separate Køge Bugt and Fakse Bugt, I did wonder for how much longer will lighthouses be needed in this day of GPS navigation. The trampsti then wends its way south till it arrives at Højurup gamle Kirke which is slowly being washed into the sea. The kirke is a popular tourist attraction in the summer but for now it was peaceful and provided me with time to relax and reflect on the beautiful surrounds. After passing through the kirke and its surrounds the next point along the trail is the Fortress of Stevns which has an important history with its use spanning many years and NATO only ceased to use it in 2000 the kommune of Stevns now uses most of the surrounds as a museum, more information can be found at the Stevnsfortet web site.
Further down the coast the views continue whilst in the distance Rødvig can be seen. As you approach Rodvig the trails turns inland to take you through the Boesdal Kalkbrud with its imposing Lime Kilns and pyramid storage shed. The final 1 km of the trampsti takes you into Rødvig where you can catch a train to Koge and then the S train to Copenhagen. I can recommend this 22 km walk as either an overnight or a long day walk which is within 2 hours of Copenhagen.
Photos of the trip can be found in the web gallery.