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Introduction

Minimalism combined with performance. Another rough way of describing it is to get as far away as possible from the traditional idea of the so-called 'real' walker - floppy trousers and heavy clodhopping boots - the carthorse style.

Sub-sections:

Gear Lists →
Footwear →
Equipment →

Generally speaking people are far too hung up about gear: there is too much beauty, too many wild places and too many fantastic experiences in Britain to be faffing about with kit and buying endless stuff they don't need. It's often the case that constantly messing about with gear is a sign of not much walking being done:- the more gear people buy and the more time they spend pontificating about it, the less they actually get out into the hills and use it. We backpack frequently but rarely even think about gear, we just remain mindful of current developments in case something comes along that offers a clear advantage over the kit we have.

We did say we would not do any more gear reviews because we are clearly not on the same wavelength. They seem to argue endlessly the merits of some types of gear over others or how to solve all the problems with the gear they have, and we are totally bemused by most of it. We continue to enjoy our backpacking with no problems at all and generally stay well away from this gear circus. Recently however the lightweight movement has gained a lot of momentum and there are some developments that change the playing field in a fundamental way, in particular backpacking packs that are much lighter than the 2-3kg load carriers that have dominated the UK market for so long yet perform equally well, or even better in some respects. The first new review we did was the 72l 1.4kg Golite Quest backpack, in the equipment subsection.

Always be aware that it is generally impossible for reviewers to know what gear is best for themselves, let alone others. Very few people have the chance to test different current brands and models under similar conditions, and all we can do is write up some general design observations about the gear we have - it will always be that way.