Review: Gore Alp-X Pro Windstopper Shorts

Every now and then I find a piece of kit that’s so useful, I end up stocking up on replacements long before they show any sign of wearing out, so horrendous is the idea of spending any time without them – these Windstopper shorts from Gore fit that bill perfectly.   I was aware that they existed for quite a while before I considered trying … Continue reading Review: Gore Alp-X Pro Windstopper Shorts

Iceland: Across the Kjolur in winter

  Kjolur – One of the historic mountain roads crossing the Icelandic Highlands, mentioned in the Sagas. It crosses from Gullfoss in the south, between LangJökull and Höfsjökull glaciers, to Blöndudalur in the north.     “Your hair’s frozen again”.   I pat my head, feeling the now familiar crinkling of a frosty quiff, before reaching for my mug of tea from its rock and … Continue reading Iceland: Across the Kjolur in winter

Þakka þér Ísland!

Well then. We arrived back home last week after an interesting month. It had been a hard winter at the point when we left for Iceland, five weeks ago. Well, by ‘hard’ I mean that we had been jollying around Chile and Argentina for a couple of months, followed by six fairly intensive weeks of preparing for a Winter Mountain Leader assessment in the Cairngorms, … Continue reading Þakka þér Ísland!

Trials and Tribulations in Patagonia

Patagonia. What was all that about then? It’s been a pretty hectic winter since we arrived home in Scotland in January, but here are some words and photos that I put together for Bikepacker’s Magazine about our trip. “All things look good from far away and it is man’s eternally persistent childlike faith in the reality of that illusion that has made him the triumphant … Continue reading Trials and Tribulations in Patagonia

Iceland: Boots, Bikes and Boldly going…

Soon (this evening in fact), I’ll be heading back to Iceland for a second time to explore more of its mountainous dirt roads by bike, and to learn more about that improbable, impossible and very thoroughly lovely country; that’s not to mention further research on the infinite variations of liquorice-based sweets to be found all over the place. Problem is, March is still wintertime in … Continue reading Iceland: Boots, Bikes and Boldly going…

Bikepacking bikes

Bikepacking for me started with a loop of the Cairngorms on a hot, sunny weekend in 2013. I used a couple of harnesses borrowed from Annie to attach oversized, dumpy drybags to the bars and seat of an Orange Elite 26” hardtail, and faded into the moors. A couple of days later I emerged, slavering a little and desperate for a shower, but also permanently … Continue reading Bikepacking bikes

The best laid plans…

It takes quite a lot of work to make a big trip happen, not to mention a liberal sprinkling of money where airfares and equipment are concerned. From the seeds of a vague conversation sometime last winter, to what felt like weeks researching routes, plane tickets and airline policies for bicycles, in summer we paid up and committed to what we hoped would be our … Continue reading The best laid plans…

A Journey Through the West Highlands

Summer had arrived in Fort William, and the town was baking beneath the scrutiny of an unblinking sun. Call me a sceptic, but given the weather that we typically see in this part of the world in July I was neither expecting nor coping with it. I finished the meticulous packing of my frame bag, looking for the perfect piece of kit to fill the … Continue reading A Journey Through the West Highlands

Video: Laugavegur

Slowly, slowly, I’m starting to get the time and bandwidth to actually do something with all the video and photos we brought back from Iceland. This is a short film that I put together last week with footage from the Laugavegur trail, a hiking trail that links the steam-wreathed volcanic hills Landmannalaugar with the southern ice glaciers of Myrdalsjökull and Eyjafjallajökull. We rode it as … Continue reading Video: Laugavegur