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…not just tents…a camping equipment blog too!

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Yesterday (30th April) saw the beginning of Dave Cornthwaite‘s eighth adventure in his twenty five Expedition 1000 challenges. For each of his challenges Dave is using non-motorised transport to travel at least 1000 miles. In this latest adventure, called the GO trek Dave Cornthwaite and Squash Falconer will be travelling 3000 miles on ElliptiGO running bikes. This will be a record breaking distance for travelling on ElliptiGOs! During this adventure Dave and Squash will be encouraging people to take exercise and “Say Yes More!” They are also raising money for CoppaFeel, the charity promoting early detection of breast cancer. You can find out more about the GO trek on Dave’s website.

Photoshoot at Everton FC's training ground

The GO trek photoshoot with Dave Cornthwaite and
Squash Falconer at Everton FC

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This was an enjoyable 11 mile walk in Mid Wales. The main thing that stood out being the differing types of scenery which included farmland, pine forests and moorland. With about 400 m of height gain there’s not too much uphill!

Starting from the car park in the village of Llangurig, there was gentle introduction to this walk along a short section a flat road. Crossing over the River Wye, the single track road lead us towards Clochfaen. Once off the road, the footpath climbed up Pant-gwyn Hill. Looking back, the village of Llangurig with its church can be clearly seen. Llangurig is said to be the highest village in Wales.

The village of Llangurig in Mid Wales

Llangurig, the highest village in Wales and the start of our hike.

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Whilst on my recent hike to Carnedd Llewelyn I saw across the valley a mountain that had an intriguing pyramid shape. Looking on my map I discovered that it is called Elidir Fawr. Due to its interesting geometry I decided that it would be my next objective. So I returned to Snowdonia for some more hiking.

The summit of Y Garn from near Llyn Idwal

The summit of Y Garn can be seen in the background,
just right of centre


The route from Llyn Ogwen goes up Y Garn (947 m) then drops down to about 800 m as it passes below below the summit of Foel Goch before finally heading up to the peak of Elidir Fawr (924 m).

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At the weekend we were blessed with some sunny weather, so with the mountains beckoning I headed over to Snowdonia for a hike up to Carnedd Llewelyn. There had been quite a bit of snow previously and I was hoping that there would still be some left. From the valley I could see small patches of snow but most of it had thawed. Ever hopeful I left my crampons in my rucksack just in case.

Pen yr Ole Wen mountain, Snowdonia

The route up Pen yr Ole Wen is climbs steeply from the outset

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Walk or run for the Hunger Project bannerThis time last year we announced that The Hunger Project was seeking walkers and runners to raise funds through participating in the London2Brighton Challenge. In the event, which took place in May 2012, 28 walkers and runners raised an incredible £20,000 to help with The Hunger Project’s mission of providing a sustainable end to world hunger.

This year The Hunger Project are once again calling for people to join them. If you would like to take part please see our updated blog post with details about the London2Brighton challenge 2013 and information about The Hunger Project.

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Snowdon from Cefn y Capel

Clouds on Snowdon

The weather forecast for last Sunday (18th November 2012) was looking dry and a hike in Snowdonia was on the cards. After consulting the map a couple of routes looked likely, either up Snowdon via the Pyg Track or up to Glyder Fach from Capel Curig. I decided upon the latter, having not taken that route before. Arriving a Capel Curing the weather was sunny and the air was crisp. Perfect! The route follows a fairly broad ridge most of the way up to the summit, so I thought that there would not be too much navigating to be done. After a little uncertainty finding the initial start point of the trail, I headed up in generally the right direction and soon found short sections of path to follow.

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If you’re trying to think of a large country in which you could go for an expedition, you could certainly do a lot worse than choosing Brazil. With an area of 8.5 million square kilometres, Brazil is the fifth largest country on the planet. With such a large area there are plenty of opportunities to go exploring. The most famous wilderness area is of course the Amazon river basin and rainforest, which occupy most of the northern half of Brazil. There are many other places to explore of course, such as the semiarid deserts in the northeast, central savanna regions, the eastern Atlantic coastline and southern mountain ranges and temperate coniferous forests.

Camping under a tarp in the Amazonian rainforest

Aaron Chervenak and Gareth Jones during their 2010 expedition in Brazil’s rainforest.

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Update: The Vaude Taurus 2 has been discontinued. Instead we recommend the The North Face Heyerdahl 3, which is a 3 person, 3 season tunnel tent.

The Vaude Taurus 2 is a 3 man, 3 season tent which weighs in at 2.69 kg. The tent construction is a Curved “A” Reinforced Ridge which is very stable and offers good internal height at the door. The Taurus 2 is an all-in-one pitch which enables the tent to be pitched by one person fairly easily regardless of weather conditions. Although listed for 3 persons we do feel that most users will use it as a 2 person tent, as it’s a great tent for 2 people camping.

vaude taurus 2 tent review

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Deciding what food to take when backpacking can be a difficult task. The major deciding factors being the weight of the food, its taste, longevity, nutrition and your diet. Other considerations are cooking, water and packaging. You may also be concerned about issues such as animal welfare, sustainability and food miles.

MSR camping stove being used to heat up noodles

Make your camping food taste better! Source: Flickr by Beemans.

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Here at CheapTents we love Google Maps and Street View. We are waiting with great anticipation for Google to roll out Street View for mountain trails, which we like to call “Sherpa Cam“. Yet there is still something better than Google Maps and that is Ordnance Survey mapping. The Ordnance Survey National Grid reference system can be used to locate an exact position anywhere in Great Britain. It can be frustrating though, if you want to view a grid reference on a map online. Fortunately the Ordnance Survey website has the answer! It is called Get a Map.

Ordnance Survey Get a Map logo

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