Outdoor Gear Blog - CheapTents

CheapTents Outdoor Gear Blog

…not just tents…a camping equipment blog too!

Going walking in the Autumn can provide an awesome visual experience with views of trees changing colour from green through to yellow and red. Bracken on the hillside becoming brown gives the fells a whole new look. On sunny days, with the nights drawing in, you can often see the countryside in the glow of the golden hour just before the sun goes down.

Lake District Fells with brown bracken on the lower slopes

Shades of brown in the Lake District during Autumn. Source: Flickr by Marilyn Peddle.

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If you’ve been out walking when the weather is mild but showery you’ll know that keeping comfortable can be a bit awkward. If you keep your waterproofs on all the time you end up overheating, but then you don’t want to get wet when it rains. This is where softshell jackets come in. During changeable, mild weather, they are ideal for use as a mid-layer or outer shell. Softshells keep you warm without you getting too overheated and are also water resistant so will keep you dry in a light shower.

Softshell Outdoors Jacket from The North Face

The North Face Durango Hoodie Softshell designed for use in the mountains

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We are excited to announce that we are stocking a new range of parkas from Didrickons. If you are looking for a stylish and practical winter coat then Didrickons’ parkas are just what you need. Our range includes parkas for men, women, boys and girls so you can keep your whole family dry and warm during the cold winter months.

Men's, Women's and Children's parkas from Didricksons

Didricksons Parkas – Winter Coats for all the Family


Our Didrickons parkas are from Didrickon’s Storm System range.

All products marked with the STORM SYSTEM label are specially developed for particularly harsh weather. Their shell fabrics are fully waterproof and all seams are sealed by tape and/or welding. The STORM SYSTEM products are all about protection and they are designed to keep you dry and warm during all weather conditions.

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When you’re out in the cold and wet its vital to keep warm. The warmest outdoor jackets use an insulation material sandwiched between a outer shell. Just like with sleeping bags, there are two main choices for insulation material. These are either down or synthetic. Both of these insulation materials loft up, trapping air voids which is warmed by your body heat. Outdoor gear manufacturers are constantly trying to come up with new ways to advance insulation technology and one such product is PrimaLoft’s ThermoBall. This is a down-like synthetic fill used exclusively by The North Face.

Insulation materials for outdoor jackets and sleeping bags

Primaloft ThermoBall, Synthetic and Down Insulation

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To help launch our new running section, which is the place to find all of your running gear, check out my video feature review of Salomon’s excellent Fast Wing Hoodie.

Salomon Fast Wing Hoodie

This lightweight windproof jacket which has been designed for runners as both a training or race jacket. Looking at the Fast Wing you may be forgiven for thinking that it is like many other lightweight windshirts but when you scratch below the surface and look at the features you come to appreciate that attention to detail Salomon have gone to in their design.

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Update: We are not currently stocking the RG Delta range. For alternative waterproofs, 3 in 1s and insulated waterproofs please see our men’s jackets and women’s jackets.

Manufacturers, within their own brand will have many different sub-brands or ranges. As consumers and retailers we automatically understand this. If I was to buy something from the Berghaus Extrem or The North Face Summit Series ranges for example, than I would know that I would be buying a product primarily designed for active use in within a mountain environment. As opposed to products outside these ranges which I know will be made to the normal Berghaus/The North Face high standards, but have not necessarily been designed for mountaineering use.

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The North Face Sale BannerUpdate: Our sale has now finished but you can always find The North Face clothing at competitive prices on CheapTents!

January is traditionally the time of year when retailers have their sales, as they like to clear stock in order to bring in new spring/summer lines. The outdoor industry is no different and as a result there are some great bargains to be had in our The North Face 25% Off Sale!

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P-8 Jacket
from The North Face

The Men’s Resolve Jacket has for many years been the North Face’s flagship budget lightweight waterproof jacket, ideal for walking, trekking, around town or as a car coat for inclement weather. However, in my opinion the Resolve is starting to look its age, it seems that the North Face may agree as they have brought out the P-8 Waterproof Jacket.

The The North Face P-8 has the same RRP as the Resolve Jacket, yet the P-8 is, in my opinion, significantly better than the Resolve!

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A Windy Hike on Arthurs Seat, Edinburgh

A Windy Hike on Arthurs Seat, Edinburgh. Source: Flickr by joe.lipson

Standing in our shop last week I had an epiphany whilst examining two different windshirts, a thought came into my mind which stunned me that wind proof clothing is even more versatile than I thought! Now in my defence I know Waterproof Jackets are 100% windproof, but what I was thinking about was the other windproof and wind resistant products that are on the market. The kind of clothing designed especially for summer or active use, as you don’t really want to wear your waterproof on a lovely bright BREEZY day do you? Or a fleece that as soon as the wind gusts is as much protection as a chocolate fireguard?

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The North Face Mens Decagon Jacket

Mens Decagon in black

Update : We no longer stock the Decagon Jacket. Our closest match is the The North Face Inlux and Women’s Inlux Jacket, which are also insulated, waterproof jackets.

The Decagon Jacket is a hooded, waterproof jacket. Whilst it is primarily aimed at the skiing and snow boarding market, the Decagon is highly suitable for general outdoor wear too. It has a fashionable urban design and would look great on the street as well as on the slopes! Made from fully seam sealed HyVent 2 fabric, it is waterproof and breathable. As you would expect from The North Face, the Decagon has an array of features that make it both practical and comfortable.

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Ultralight tents from Vango, Vaude, MSR and more