2 Feb 2016

Sun Protection Arm Sleeves

A couple of week's ago I wrote a review on the OR Sun Gloves. From this review, several people alerted me to sun sleeves. I think if you hike in a long sleeve shirt, the gloves suffice. But if you're a T shirt hiker, these sleeves would be great on sunny days with, say suntan lotion on back of hands.

SParms are made from 90% Meryl Microfibre and 10% spandex. UV 50+, cool and quick dry and antibacterial. They were developed for golfers and many of the Ladies PGA players use them.

I know, you want to know the weight - how does 35 grams grab you?

These come on large, medium and small sizes, standard and extra long, plus colours. I got medium and extra long as my Icebreaker T shirt has short sleeves. There is quiet a lot of stretch, so you need to take that into account. This photo shows how far up my arm the extra long goes.

The cost was $A29.95, including postage $A37.23.

The website is http://www.sparms.com.au/

27 Jan 2016

Save Able Tasman

OK, who hasn't walked the beautiful Able Tasman track?

Remember Awaroa Bay and beach? Future walker may not be able to access this area.

Find out why and how one person has a brilliant idea to keep this track section in public hands forever.

Go to https://givealittle.co.nz/project/abeltasmanbeach2016

I've throw a $100 into the fight - Even if you stumped up $10 - every bit helps us purchase this land and gift to DOC or Trust.

25 Jan 2016

Altra Lone Peak 2.5 Shoes

I am off to USA for a conference in two weeks. This is a great time to buy ultra lightweight gear and get delivered to my hotel. Only two item on my list. A replacement pair of Lone Peaks (new 2.5 model). I love these shoes, all-time favourites (and I have had a few shoes over the years!). These are like tramping in slippers! I love the wide toe box and zero drop - With my reconstructed back, I am sure it helps (or encourages me) to walk more upright.

You can check these out at Altra's website

Oh, and yes, the other item. A Tenkara fishing rod - Fresh trout on a tramping trip appeals. This is an ancient way of Japanese fishing that is taking the hiking community is the USA by storm. Lightweigh and simple, so I want to try it. Check it out at Tenkara Bum  

16 Jan 2016

OR Spectrum Sun Gloves

Having had two 'nasties' cut out of my body recently, I have become 'sun obsessive'.

On our recent Xmas/New Year tramping trip, Kathy and Hideo wore gloves to protect the back of their hands from sun damage. I was plastered in lotion, but still felt the burn.

On my return, I pledged to do some research and get gloves. One could take the budget route and get some basic white cotton dress gloves and cut the fingers off, but getting purpose made is not expensive, $40 from Bivouac NZ. For overseas readers, go to Amazon.

I got a pair of OR Spectrum Sun Gloves. 50+ UPF. They have a long wrist, so mitigate skin expose between shirt sleeve and hand when reaching out (walking poles). They are breathable and made of wicking stretch polyester fabric. This makes them quick drying.

Another feature is the silicone grip dots on the palm. good for those (like me) that use walking poles - no slip.

Dare I mention the weight! 19 grams!

On the subject of gloves, I once saw a tramper on a wet, cold trip wearing dish washing gloves.  Not a bad idea, I'd suggest getting oversize to help get them on and off easier. I have also read about others who wear surgical gloves for wet weather travel. This might put the fear of  God into your fellow trampers who may not quite be ready for a prostate check on the trail!.

9 Jan 2016

In Field Emergency Repairs

Evidence that carrying a needle and dental floss comes in handy. I tripped and got my shoe caught on a razor sharp piece of rock (lucky it wasn't the leg!). May not look 'seamstress' quality, but it worked really well.

7 Jan 2016

Motatapu and Scotts Creek to Caples Trips

Hideo Yoshihama, Kathy Endelbrecht, Ming Lo and I just back from 7 day Xmas/New Year tramp. Go to Trips Page to see photos

13 Dec 2015

16cm Carbon Fiber Tent Stakes

These tent stakes are made with a Carbon Fiber shaft with a metal tip and metal end cap. 
The individual weight is 6grams - I pack 8 into a cuben fiber stake sack for all up weight of 52grams. 

The thick diameter allows them to grip the ground better than the thin titanium. These stakes are excellent in loose soil, and they have also proven to be very functional in typical dirt.

Because of the thick diameter they can be harder to drive into compacted ground. Never hammer these in. Hold your foot in both hands for stability and press the stakes into the ground at an angle. If you can't press them into the ground all the way, anchor them with rocks.

Joe at Zpacks also reports these stakes are 'Airplane Safe'. Never thought of this benefit. Joe says they have carried these stakes through US airport security a dozen times with no issues as they are not particularly pointy.

Cost is $US3.50 each - stake stuff sack $US5.45 - go to Zpacks accessory page