Sunday, 11 April 2010

The small things

We often consider the big items in our pack but on a my most recent trip I was reflecting on the items of clothing that travel with me on most if not all trips. I thought others my be interested in some of these items and may be able to provide alternatives to these items.

First up is my Icebreaker Pocket 200 red merino hat I have 2 of these one for the cooler months going to work and one for hiking. I use the hiking one when needed in conjunction with a Buff and when it gets cold then my Merino hoody and cocoon pullover help to keep me warm. In summer there is a need for sun protection then it is my OR pocket bucket though I love my Radar Pocket Cap and often carry it as well (yeah I know extra weight but ...)

Gloves, I use walking poles and in the cooler months the hands get cold, I have tried IBEX merino liners (the best by far) and whilst they are very good, there life span is short when used with hiking poles. Recently I was able to obtain a pair of Extremities Velo gloves and they are great, partially because the manufacturer does not have the "one size fits all" mentality.

Socks, I have big feet (US 13 or 14, depending on brand) and have often had blisters especially between the toes but once I started using injini liner socks over 3 years ago I have had no problems. I find the Bamboo liner socks perfect, they dry overnight (do not smell like synthetic socks) and they are very robust.

Chafing, something that we all try to avoid by ensuring that we wash regularly on the trail as well as other tricks. For the past 4 years I have used Underarmour compression shorts along with appropriate personal hygiene has ensured that chafing is a thing of the past. Now I am exploring the use of merino underwear from Chocolate Fish.