Tuesday, 26 August 2014
A STORMY NIGHT
At 3.30 am I put on my waterproofs. There
was no way I was going to sleep. My
camping place was as planned - at the
bealach below Stob Coir' an Albannaich,
high above Glen Etive. But the ground was
waterlogged, meaning I'd had to triple-
stake three of my shelter's five main anchor
points - and now the wind and rain were
swirling around the bealach, hitting the
Trailstar from all directions.
Although I got into my sleeping bag and
bivvy bag I was afraid to go to sleep for fear
of waking up to find that my shelter had
been blown away: the Trailstar is a tarp! I
stayed dry and reasonably comfortable until
I decided to pack up at 6.30, delighted that
the shelter had stayed up.
I packed up in the storm before
heading down to Loch Dochard and on to
Kingshouse. That night, despite more strong
wind and rain, and waterlogged ground, I
slept warm and dry, secure in the knowledge
that the tarp would stay up.
Was I mad - not using a tent? No! Every
night that I camped I was dry, warm and
comfortable. My shelter was light, spacious
and easy to put up. And it coped with the
exceptional weather that marked the 2011
Would I use it again on the Challenge?
Definately, but next time I'd take longer
and stronger stakes!
Gordon Green (Challenger 117)
This was published in the October 2011 issue of the TGO Magazine (The Great Outdoors Magazine)
At the bealach
At the bealach
My account of my 2011 TGO Challenge - from Oban to St. Cyrus - is here:
In 2011 the MLD Trailstar was still a relatively new kid on the block. Although it had been on sale by Mountain Laurel Designs for some years before, it hadn't become fairly common place in the UK. I got mine in July 2010 after reading an excellent review by Colin Ibbotson:
Now Trailstars are a much more common place shelter on the hills. The design is superb and the MLD Trailstar now has a reputation for being able to cope with very stormy weather. In 2011, I must confess, I was not so sure on that second night of the TGO.