Author Archives: Red Leader

Lover of all things outdoors. And indoors. And beer.

Exped SynMat UL 7 Review & Fault Update

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I did a brief pre-review of the Exped SynMat Ultralight 7 back in 2011 and have been using it solidly since then for bivvying and tent camping (but not hammocking) and it has proven to be an excellent piece of kit. It packs nice and small, is a great weight for the gram conscious and most […]

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Rocky Mountain Bivvy

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Having had a number of gentle nights around the campfire in Annalong Wood, we had increasingly found ourselves gazing across the valley at Round Seefin, Long Seefin and Rocky Mountain thinking it looked like a great place for a night out. Santa had brought one of the kids a bivvy bag for Christmas so a […]

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Optimus Nova Plus Multifuel Stove Review

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(Updated 03/02/2013) As my gear loving friends know I’ve been vehemently opposed to Multifuel stoves since I heard first their helicopter-landing din and realised they were little more than an unpredictable Molotov Cocktail waiting to remove a few fingers. However, I’ve always been nervous around anything flammable under pressure, gas included so it seemed only fair that I […]

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Rab Infinity Down Jacket Review

Rab Infinity Down Jackets

I’ve been looking for a solution to replace my Berghaus Down Vest for quite some time. While the vest is an excellent piece of kit, I thought its warmth to weight ratio could be bettered and since it’s lacking arms and hood I still tended to feel cold when I was wearing it. My original […]

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Wild Country Zephyros 2 Review – Fair Weather Thoughts

Terra Nova Zephyros 2s

The NI-Wild Christmas Dinner is an annual affair well worth looking forward to. A full turkey dinner with all the trimmings prepared over an open fire with lots of mulled wine and followed by an evening filled with war stories of peaks conquered, rivers run and weather suffered. Dwarfs would sing songs of the weight […]

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Jetboil Flash Review

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So I have had the Jetboil Flash for a few weeks now and although I’ve not had it out as much as I’d like, a proper review seems overdue. I’ll not rehash the basics which you can read in the pre-review here, I’ll just talk about my actual experiences. It’s fair to say that as […]

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Slieve Commedagh Summit Camp

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With so much new gear kicking around the house but my weekends filled with duties I threw caution to the wind and took a midweek camp. Initially I didn’t have much of a plan in mind just wanting a bivvy somewhere preferring a peak in the Mournes as it had been a while since my […]

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Cascade River Camp

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With a baby nipping at the toes leisurely camping trips which were once a welcomed chance for wifely peace and quiet home alone are now the mark of the man who not only abandons his wife and child for a night but does it at extreme distance and altitude. Thusly hiking and camping loiters on […]

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New Gear First Thoughts – Jetboil & Exped Synmat

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I’ve talked for a while about investing in a new Jetboil and sleeping mat. I did buy a second-hand Jetboil a few years ago but it had developed a tendency to make strange noises when lit and being already nervous of gas stoves, I’d long stopped using it. I have also been through many sleep […]

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Cove Cave Trip Review

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Cove Cave is one of the more talked about places of interest in the Mournes and as yet I’d never been there but after seeing it visited by Darryl Grimason on the BBC TV program “Off The Beaten Track” I decided it needed pushed up the list. It’s a 6 mile round trip, starting at […]

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