Tour de Cairngorms Bikepacking Trip

Posted by on Jun 21, 2017 in Bike, Camp, East Highlands | No Comments
Tour de Cairngorms Bikepacking Trip

In late May I spent four days cycling around the Cairngorms with my friend Donald. This ride has been on my radar for many years but I have never actually allocated the time to it. What better opportunity than now, as a redundant man? Conditions were perfect, warm, sunny and with river levels so low I was […]

National Cycle Route 78 and the Great Glen Way by MTB

Posted by on May 3, 2017 in Bike, Camp, Scotland, West Highlands | 4 Comments
National Cycle Route 78 and the Great Glen Way by MTB

Every working day for the last 12 years I have used my swipe card to raise the same striped barrier. No longer.  On April 7th I handed in my card, laptop and phone and left the protective umbrella of corporate work behind. Though I am excited about the future this change has inevitably left a hole in my life. My […]

Packraft Camp at Whiteness Head – March’s Outdoor Sleep

Posted by on Mar 28, 2017 in Camp, Climate, Earth, East Highlands | No Comments
Packraft Camp at Whiteness Head – March’s Outdoor Sleep

I’m now at 25 months of sleeping outdoors at least once a month. One might imagine that it would get easier after two years, but I still experience an inbuilt resistance to leaving my warm house and comfortable bed for the dark unknown.  Even when my logical mind knows that I am bound for a pleasant […]

Fear of the Dark: February’s Outdoor Sleep

Posted by on Feb 23, 2017 in Camp, East Highlands, Outdoor Sport, Scotland | No Comments
Fear of the Dark: February’s Outdoor Sleep

Fear of the dark is a fundamental part of the human condition, dating back millions of years to when we were hominids on the African savannah, sleeping alongside nocturnal hunters capable of snatching us from our nest and dragging us, screaming, into the night. The nature of our fear of the dark has evolved with us. […]

This Green Winter Bivvy is a Sign of Things To Come

Posted by on Feb 6, 2017 in Bivvy, Climate, Commentary, East Highlands | No Comments
This Green Winter Bivvy is a Sign of Things To Come

This month I have a bit of climate chat for you. As you can see from the accompanying photo of my ice-encrusted bivvy bag, my January sleep was chilly but not particularly wintery. Not only is there no snow at my bivvy spot, there is barely a scrap of the white stuff to be seen […]

Glen Feshie Hammock Camp: December’s Outdoor Sleep

Posted by on Jan 2, 2017 in Bivvy, East Highlands | 2 Comments
Glen Feshie Hammock Camp: December’s Outdoor Sleep

Here we are at the start of another year. I have resolved to make 2017 a year of writing. This blog will be updated at least fortnightly and I am going to complete two longer projects, a non-fiction book that I started back in 2014 and a short e-book on my 2016 mountaineering trip to […]

Outdoor sleeping catchup: August to November

Posted by on Nov 20, 2016 in Camp, Canoe, Northwest Highlands, Walk, West Highlands | No Comments
Outdoor sleeping catchup: August to November

I’m now at 21 months straight on this monthly outdoor sleeping challenge and have a real mixed bag over the summer and autumn- from the enlightenment inducing Tien Shan mountains of Kazakhstan to a hungover doss in Strontian campsite. Going to make more of an effort to keep up to date from now on! Loch […]

Outdoor sleeping catchup March to July

Outdoor sleeping catchup March to July

Back in February I completed a year of sleeping outdoors at least once per month. I have continued the habit and have now notched up 17 months straight. Here’s a quick catchup. March – otter watching at a small and secret loch Secret loch Re-reading Barry Lopez’s accounts in ‘Arctic Dreams’ of the Eskimo’s amazing […]

February’s outdoor sleep – 12 in a row, challenge complete

Posted by on Mar 16, 2016 in Bivvy, East Highlands, Scotland | No Comments
February’s outdoor sleep – 12 in a row, challenge complete

After dinner  on the 26th of February I felt inclined to settle down with a well earned drink. But it wasn’t to be, for the weather was settled and I was running out of time to complete my year of outdoor sleeping. I quickly packed my bag, drove a short distance and started climbing up the snowy […]

A Daylight Approach to Maol Bhuidhe

Posted by on Jan 1, 2016 in Bothy, Northwest Highlands, TV and Film | 5 Comments
A Daylight Approach to Maol Bhuidhe

Some places get inside you, and the remote Maol Bhuidhe bothy is one of those places. My first visit was in the winter of 2008-09 by the most obvious route, a long icy cycle up Glen Elchaig followed by a climb over the Aonach Bhuidhe – Foagaich bealach. We returned a further three times, using a […]