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Archive for May, 2012

Cliffhanger – Largest UK Outdoor Pursuits Festival 7-8th July

May 31st, 2012

The aim of the event is to inspire & involve people of all ages in outdoor pursuits. Based at Sheffields 200 acre Graves Park, the event will feature elite competitions and  professional demonstrations in rock climbing, orienteering,  mountain biking, running, slacklining, and adventure racing. There will also be three artificial caves to try out for free, as well as free climbing walls with professional tuition, free orienteering courses, free physiotherapy consultations and treatment- Plus much much more.

Tickets cost £7 on the day and accompanied under 16’s are free.

For further information please visit the website


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Chamonix Adventure Festival 20-26th August 2012

May 23rd, 2012

Chamonix Adventure Festival brings together adventurers, explorers, athletes and enthusiasts to showcase their talents through film, photography, art and displays.

Over 3 nights at the Cinema Vox will be screened the latest adventure and environmental films from across the world. On hand will be the filmmakers, explorers and athletes to share their exploits.

The Adventure Photo School run by Corey Rich and Scott Willson will be running 2 courses in its second year: a one-day introduction to adventure photography and a three-day more advanced class for those interested in digital SLR photography in the outdoors.

There will also be a new adventure film school, a three-day course in adventure filming techniques run by local filmmaker Seb Montaz, and award winning mountain filmmaker Paul Diffley.

All courses are a combination of classroom sessions based at our partner hotel, Hotel les Aiglons, and time spent outside shooting.

For further details please click here

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Pure Hydration Armoured Water Bladders Now In Stock

May 21st, 2012

Pure Hydration Armoured Water Bladders are one of the toughest water carriers you can buy. The Armour Weave waterproof fabric will prevent tearing and splitting under the most extreme of conditions. To prove this point the staff at Pure Hydration drove over one of the Armoured bladders full of water in a 2.5 tonne Land Rover – to see the video click here.

These Armoured Bladders are available in 2 litre and 3 litre version, and both come with an insulated drinking tube and a large filling cap. If used in conjunction with a Pure Hydration Inline filter then you also have a water purification carrier as well.




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First Purpose-Built ‘Black’ Grade Mountain Bike Trail In Cumbria

May 18th, 2012

The first purpose-built ‘black’ grade mountain bike trail in Cumbria has been officially opened at the Forestry Commission’s Grizedale Forest. The downhill trail, which is more than a kilometre long, was built by a small team of passionate and dedicated volunteers who are mountain biking enthusiasts, supported by the Grizedale Mountain Bikes team and the Forestry Commission’s recreation ranger. Mountain bike trails are graded by colour in a similar way to ski runs – green, blue, red and black – with black being the most difficult and suited only to experienced riders.

The black trail adds to the existing mountain biking and cycling trail network at Grizedale, which includes the 16km-long red grade North Face Trail, a plethora of exciting bridleways, several way-marked family bike trails on the forest road system, and the Grizedale Mountain Bikes’ bike hire and shop.

Katie Jarvis, Forestry Commission recreation ranger at Grizedale Forest, said, “We are now able to offer great trails to suit all levels of riders, from families with children on our forest road routes, the cross-country mountain bikers with the North Face Trail and bridleways, and now the more experienced riders and downhill adrenaline-junkies with the new black route.”

One great way to enjoy Grizedale throughout the year is by getting a Discovery Pass which also costs far less than a gym membership. For only £40 a year, this entitles you to free parking within the forest, 10% off items in the visitor centre shop, 20% off Go Ape high wire adventure courses on weekdays during term-time and a saving of £24 on adult membership of the CTC (the UK’s national cyclists’ organisation) as well as other benefits.

For more information about Grizedale, visit For regular updates on Grizedale Forest visit the Grizedale Forest Facebook page. Follow this link to watch a video of the trail  –


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Top Travel Tips For Winter Sports Festivals

May 16th, 2012

If you’re heading abroad to a winter sports festival this year, make sure you take note of the following points to help you have fun and a trouble free trip!

  • Take out travel insurance: make sure you are fully covered for the activities you are planning and for any unexpected losses or expenses such as missing flights, particularly if you are travelling on ‘discount tickets’. It won’t break the bank and it will put your mind at rest!
  • Passports: It’s all too easy to lose your passport at a festival, so keep it in a secure location ideally behind lock and key. If this isn’t possible, keep it on you securely. Keep a separate record of your passport details, preferably a photocopy of the details pages with next of kin contact details or upload a scan to a secure online safe before you leave. Report lost or stolen passports to the local police immediately.
  • Beware of bag and mobile phone snatchers especially in chalets, on the slopes, public transport, restaurants, cafes ad at the festival. Report the loss of any valuables to the local police and obtain a written police report.
  • Drink & Drugs: know your limits. Penalties for drug possession can be severe, with heavy fines or imprisonment. Don’t carry anything through customs for anyone else.
  • Visas: find out what visas are required for your visit. The Foreign & Commonwealth Office have advice for every country in their travel advice by country section
  • Local Emergency Services. Wherever you are in the European Union you can always reach them (ambulance, police, fire brigade) by calling 112 from any mobile or land-line.
  • British Embassy/Consulate: Before you travel, note down the number of your nearest British embassy or consulate


It’s worth spending a few moments sorting out your holiday plans now. If something goes wrong… it can not only be very expensive but it can follow you back home. Make these simple preparations, sit back and wait for the fun to begin!

For more information on winter sports travel, visit the Foreign & Commonwealth Office website for additional travel details and country specific information.


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Scotlands Best Kept Secret Exposed At New Festival

May 10th, 2012

The Wild Lochaber Festival, to be held in the Outdoor Capital of the UK (OCUK), Fort William, will be a week-long celebration of the incredible wildlife (at sea and on land) and geology (landscapes and scenery) that can be experienced in Lochaber. Lochaber is an area of stunning natural beauty where you will find the UK’s highest mountain, Ben Nevis; its deepest loch, Loch Morar; and the longest glen, The Great Glen.

The region boasts a wealth of amazing wildlife rarely seen elsewhere in the UK —  red deer, golden eagle, sea eagle, osprey, pine marten,  otter, whales, dolphins, basking shark plus rare butterflies, dragonflies, orchids, alpine plants and much more. The whole of Lochaber is an internationally recognised Geopark with many of the world’s finest and most unique geological features are located here.

The Wild Lochaber Festival inaugural event, organised by the OCUK, runs for one week from 1 June 2012 with a Festival Fair on the 2 and 3 June 2012. The Festival Fair will showcase all that is available in Lochaber’s natural environment and will provide a wealth of information relating to local biodiversity. Local organisations and tour operators who provide wildlife and landscape activities and events will be present, together with government and professional bodies.

Organised events to be held during the Festival week are designed to show visitors and residents the best areas in Lochaber to spot wildlife and see the most interesting landscapes. Choices will include guided wildlife tours (on land and sea), walks, Geopark Rock Safaris, children’s activities and talks. Wildlife and landscape pictures taken by local schools for a photography competition will be on display and judged during the Festival. As part of the overall Wild Lochaber project, a series of self-guiding trails will be developed, with further plans to create new wildlife-watching hides.

For more information, go to


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Sub Zero Factor 3 Fleece Head Gear Back In Stock

May 8th, 2012

Demand for our Factor 3 fleece thermal hats and balaclavas has been so overwhelming that we have pulled forward our winter 2012/2013 production by four months. The result is that our Factor 3 fleece balaclava, beanie hat and beanie hat with ear guards are now back in stock  – just in time for Springs  cold wet and windy weekends!


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Terra Nova Moonlite Bivvy Bag Now In Stock

May 5th, 2012

With the heavy rain we have been experiencing in the UK for the past few weeks, a waterproof sleeping bag cover is the ideal piece of kit for any budding lightweight backpacker. The extremely lightweight waterproof breathable fabric produces a bivvy bag that packs down to 21 x 6cm (8.3 x 2.4″) and weighs only 180g (7oz). Used in conjunction with a Terra Nova Tarp this Moonlite Bivvy Bag will protect you from the worst of the British spring weather.


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Suffolk Walking Festival Features New 70 Mile Challenge

May 3rd, 2012

Taking place between Saturday 19th May and Sunday 10th June, the Suffolk Walking Festival will feature around 30 guided outings including the new Flatford to the Fens five day, 70 mile challenge. Covering much of inland Suffolk, the festival will take in areas around Stowmarket, Lavenham, Bury St Edmunds, Newmarket, Mildenhall and Ipswich. Graded according to their level of difficulty, the walks range from gentle 2-3 mile country rambles and meanders through ancient villages and towns, to longer and more energetic outings of up to 14 miles through Suffolk’s beautiful countryside.

The Flatford to the Fens Suffolk Challenge Walk can be joined for the entire 70 miles, or for as many days as walkers wish but there will be a prize for those who complete the route. The walks will be led by countryside experts from the Dedham Vale AONB, Brecks Partnership and The Ramblers with distances ranging from 10 to 14 miles each day. The Challenge starts in Flatford on Sunday, 20th May following the Stour Valley Path long distance route through picturesque Constable Country and the Dedham Vale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. It reaches the market town of Sudbury, where it picks up the St Edmund Way to Lavenham, England’s finest medieval village, then continues to Bury St Edmunds, with its magnificent cathedral. The route then joins the Lark Valley Path and follows this gently flowing river finishing in Mildenhall on Thursday, 24th May.

Other highlights include a seven mile, morning walk on Tuesday, 29th May around the historic Helmingham Hall estate, near Stowmarket with the head forester, who has a vast knowledge about local wildlife as well as the ancient trees. The price of £20 per person includes lunch in the Coach House Tea Rooms and a chance to explore the stunning Grade 1 listed gardens during the afternoon. Special interest walks include the 6.5 mile Medieval Marvels outing on Friday, 8th June strolling through fields and country lanes to visit the three fascinating churches of Woolpit St Mary; Drinkstone All Saints and Rattlesden St Nicholas, which has a beautiful angel roof. A short talk will be given at each church included in the £4 per person price. Nature lovers can also join a 4-5 mile walk starting at 8.30pm on Saturday evening, 9th June in search of the elusive nightjar in Brandon Country Park; adults £4, children free. There are several walks with activities to attract a younger audience such as The Story of St Edmund on Thursday, 7th June. The 45 minute amble around the medieval abbey grounds will help answer some questions about England’s former patron saint such as how he lost his head. Starting at 11am the walk is £3 per child but free for accompanying adults.


Pre-booking is essential for all walks by calling the Tourist Information Centre in Bury St Edmunds on 01284 764667; they would also be able to advise on places to stay and post a free printed programme. Some of the walks are free while for others the prices range from £2 up to £20 per person (latter includes lunch); dogs are allowed on some outings but must be kept on a lead at all times. The programme is downloadable at


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Sir Ranulph Fiennes Speaking Tour: Everest, The Eiger & More

May 1st, 2012

When world-renowned polar explorer Sir Ranulph Fiennes turned his attentions from the great frozen wilderness of the Poles to the world’s highest and most testing mountains he faced several challenges. In his early sixties and recovering from a very severe heart attack, he had no climbing experience and, not least, suffered from vertigo! This is the inspirational story of how he conquered those fears to summit two of the most dangerous mountains in the world.

Sir Ranulph will be interviewed live on stage by acclaimed high altitude mountaineer and photographer Ian Parnell.  Ian filmed Ranulph on both mountains as they climbed.  Includes footage and images from both expeditions.

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