Outdoor Gear Blog - CheapTents

CheapTents Outdoor Gear Blog

…not just tents…a camping equipment blog too!

Groundsheet protectors are something that very few people I know carry, mainly due to the extra weight. I recently started thinking about whether or not there was a real need to carry a tent groundsheet protector or whether it was just unnecessary bulk.

What do Groundsheet Protectors Do?

So is it worth carrying the extra weight and what does it actually do?
Well the main purpose of a ground sheet protector, also known as a footprint, is to protect groundsheets! With tents becoming lighter all the time groundsheets are thinner than they used to be. This is fine if you are camping on grass and can clear the site before pitching. However this isn’t normally the case with tents needing to be pitched in a hurry and sometimes your only choice is rocky ground. In these cases a groundsheet protector is well worth the extra weight to prevent against punctures from twigs, thorns or stones.

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Orienteering in the New Forest

The British Orienteering Championships 2009 are being held this weekend in the New Forest. It is nearly 30 years since the British Championships were last held in the beautiful countryside of the New Forest. The weather forecast for the weekend is currently for cloud and a maximum temperature of 10 °C.

If you would like to find out more about the sport of orienteering, please see our Introduction to Orienteering.

Orienteering World Champions

Orienteering World Champions with Gold Medals

Orienteering World Champions. Source: Soren Andersson.

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I thought to finish off my recent spate of posts on Mountain marathons I’d talk about what sort of outdoor gear is best. Most competitions provide a required gear list from which teams must carry everything. I’ve tried to briefly cover everything commonly found on these lists but they do vary.

Personal Gear

Top Baselayer
A good quality top, with either long or short sleeves is all that is needed. Make sure that the top is made of a high quality material with good wicking properties. If you’re running hard you’re not likely to be cold, but will get sweaty.

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Recently I’ve posted about mountain marathons,  the key to enjoying fell running is good fitness. The trouble is it can be hard to get up and out and get training. I’ve decided to put together a list of tips for getting out of the house and keeping motivated.

Train with a friend
Its definitely much easier to get out onto the hills for a walk or a run if you have a friend harassing you to come out with  you or someone you don’t want to disappoint.

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Just a quick post for all of our runners out there,  a new off road mountain marathon has been announced recently, taking place in the Mournes,  Co Down on June 13th.

This is a Marathon which is almost entirely off road. The event date is Saturday 13 June 2009.

In addition to the Marathon there will also be a Half Marathon and a 10k run/walk incorporated into the route – these races, like the Marathon, will also finish in Kilbroney Park, Rostrevor. There will also be a “Challenge Walk” on the day along the full 26 mile route of the Mourne Way.

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A quick reminder to everyone that the Sheffield Adventure Film Festival starts in a weeks time.

2009 is bigger and it’s better than ever before. Why?Without a shadow of doubt the best line up of adventure films and climbing speakers ever put together over a single weekend, anywhere, ever! Well that’s what we think…

The event takes place in the biggest independent cinema in the UK outside of London, and is packed full of great films.

Featuring lots of films packed full of adrenaline-inducing adventure sports, climbing and bouldering as well as some slower pace, thought provoking cultural and environmental films.

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Last month we added a new range of lightwave tents, and today for my first post on the cheaptents.com blog I’m going to tell you a bit more about the Lightwave Fastpack 40 and Fastpack 50 lightweight backpacks.  These bags already come well recommended getting best in Test (Trail Magazine Oct 08) and Recommended Buy (TGO Magazine July 08).

Lightwave fastpack rucksack

To quote Lightwave the rucksacks are designed to be …

comfortable, lightweight and highly water-resistant bags for long day/weekend hiking trips. Whether you count them as relatively small backpacks or very large daysacks, they combine – as you would expect from Lightwave – a sophisticated carrying system with a very low weight.

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Responsible Climbers Protect Birds

The British Mountaineering Council (BMC) will be publishing a list of current and new climbing restrictions later this month. These are voluntary restrictions put in place to prevent nesting birds and their chicks from being disturbed.

The BMC asks all climbers to read up on the restrictions for the areas in which they climb. Climbers have an excellent record of respecting bird nesting restrictions and continued good will is important to develop and maintain good relations with landowners and conservation bodies.

Tony Ryan, the BMC.

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2009 World Mountain Bike conference

The 2009 World Mountain Bike conference will be held at the beautiful Easterbrook Hall in Dumfries, Scotland. The mountain bike conference will be held from May 12 – 15, 2009.

The mountain bike conference includes many guest speakers from the world of mountain biking, covering topics such as “Mountain Biking – 7 Stanes Foundation to Economic Success”, “Meeting the Challenge of Delivering World Class sustainable Mountain Biking in Scotland” and “Scotland: Marketing the Mountain Bike Tourism Product”.

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What is Mountain Boarding?

Mountain boards are like skate boards with big wheels. The big wheels enable the mountain boards to travel without hindrance across dirt tracks and grass.

Pop your mountain board in your rucksack, walk up a hill and roll on down! Or if you’re not feeling that energetic you could take the ski lift up the hill, like the guys on the video below. Obviously as a serious walking and camping equipment shop we only recommend going up hill using your own energy!


BFC Teaser 2009 from jack johnston on Vimeo.

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