Grooming kit essentials

A well put-together grooming kit is a very important piece of horse equipment. Regular grooming serves many purposes, not just keeping our horses clean. The grooming process allows you to assess your horse's overall health and find any potential issues before they become a real problem.

Every horse owner's grooming kit will be different depending on the horse and the tools the person prefers using. A very basic grooming kit can be put together for fairly inexpensive depending on the brand of brushes you use. Here is a basic guideline for putting together a grooming kit that is functional and simple.

  1. A Grooming box or tray will allow you to keep your items tidy and is a way to ensure all you’re grooming kit has a home for ease of storage so it is easily moved around.

  1. Combs are an essential part of the grooming kit which removes knots and tangles from a horses mane and tail, leaving a tidy glossy finish.

  1. A Plastic Curry Comb is used on the horse to help loosen dirt, hair, and other detritus. Plastic curry combs can also sometimes seen being used to brush the mane and tail, but this is not recommended on a regular basis as it will eventually split or break the hair.


  1. Hoof picks are the most necessary tool in the grooming kit. You can find them in all sorts of styles: those with brushes for flicking away dried dirt and bedding, those with fun shapes and colours, and those that are ergonomically designed for comfort in the hand. A hoof pick is used to clear mud, rocks, snow and other debris from your horse's hooves. 


  1. A Rubber curry comb is a firm yet flexible grooming implement consisting of rows of circular rubber teeth. The Rubber curry is a very useful piece of grooming kit for removing grease and loose hair from your horses. Used in a circular motion over the soft parts of the horses body, the rubber curry comb also provides a good massage for your horse and can help to remove mud as well as stimulating the skin to produce natural oils.
  2. A Sweat scraper is a grooming tool used to remove the sweat from horses. It consists of a handle and a rubber blade. This helps cool the horse down after the horse has been ridden.
  3. A Hoof oil brush is used to evenly spread hoof oil around the horses hooves without the oil dripping everywhere.


  1. A Dandy brush is a stiff-bristled brush is used to remove the dirt, hair and other material stirred up by the curry. Brushes are used in the direction of the horse's hair coat growth, usually in short strokes from front to back, except at the flanks, where the hair grows in a different pattern.


  1. A body brush is a soft-bristled brush removes finer particles and dust, adds a shine to the coat and is soothing to the horse. A body brush, particularly a smaller design called a Face brush, can be used on the head, being careful to avoid the horse's eyes. The body brush is generally the last brush used on the horse.


  1. A Shedding blade is a metal shedding blade with short, dull teeth is used to remove loose winter hair. A shedding blade is also useful for removing caked-on mud. However, grooming tools with metal teeth can split and dull the horse's hair coat and may irritate the skin, so must be used with appropriate care.


  1. Mane and tail conditioner is a highly concentrated formula with a unique action that helps to maintain and achieve a longer, healthier-looking mane and tail.

The History of Camping

Camping as a recreational activity entered into popular society over 100 years ago, before then it was an activity only carried out by the military. It is widely accepted that Thomas Hiram Holding was one of the first proponents of the activity, which is gaining in popularity every year and will continue to do so, through the effects of the current economic climate. Through his literature, Thomas Holding not only popularised camping for leisure, he also, designed the first truly portable tent, and founded what has now become the camping and caravan club.

Holding wrote the first Camper's Handbook in 1908, but it was not until the end of the First World War that camping as a pass time really started to take off. This book described to people, for the first time, the basics of camping. The knowledge required to write this book he learnt whilst traveling with a wagon train across the prairies of America. The journey, taken with his family in 1853 at the age of 9, was 1200 miles long, we can only marvel at the experiences he must have had.

During the 1920’s and 30’s saw the rise and promotion of a healthy lifestyle. The book “Healthy Living” by Charles- Edward Amory Winslow for instance promoted a good healthy diet with regular outdoor exercise. This helped greatly popularise camping.

Camping continued to rise in the 1950’s with tent holidays seen as a less regimental alternative to boarding houses and allowing poorer families to experience a holiday for the first time.

During the 1960s there was a seismic change in the way people went on holiday in the UK. People started to notice the benefits of camping rather than staying in a boarding house which had always been more popular before. Some of the reasons for this were that camping was far cheaper, the price and quality of camping goods was improving and whilst camping you didn't have to adhere to the stricter rules of boarding houses.

Festival camping started to grow in popularity around this period also. Camping has allowed people to stay within close proximity to the actual proceedings of the festivals. Most festivals now offer simple camping facilities.

Small seaside campsites that were easily accessible via train quickly turned into large Warner, Pontin and Butlins holiday camps with their own military style barracks for accommodation. Blackpool with its excellent railway network became Britain’s most popular holiday destination with a height of 17 million visitors a year.

These holiday camps saw the popularity of the tent and the caravan dwindle slightly until the increased wealth of the 1960’s and 70’s and cheap mass production meant that car ownership became more widespread. Camping holidays in parts of the country which would have earlier been too inaccessible for the majority of the population saw a vast rise in holiday makers.  The South West of England became most popular camping destination and small independent campsites sprung up all over the region.

During this time period trailer tents also rose in popularity and people started heading over the channel to experience their first holiday abroad.

The 1980’s – 000’s saw a decline in camping in the UK with the introduction of cheap flights and package holidays. The number of people holidaying abroad rose from 7 million in 1978 to a height of 26 million by 1996. The number of people returning to camping increased slowly in the 2000’s but it was not until 2007 that camping really took off again.

Present day

As people turned to camping for a more economical holiday, at the same time to attract the rising number of holiday makers, campsites in the UK started to go more up market. Shower blocks became modernised and traditional farm campsites opened cafes selling traditional home grown and home cooked food. Entertainment also went more upmarket, assault courses and bush craft skills are now on offer at many campsites and at a campsite in Sussex you can even attend a candlelit opera evening in the woods.

Glamping is a portmanteau (a word that is a combination of two or more words) and blends glamorous and camping. It's origins lye in the early 21st century when international financial troubles created demand for a high value luxury holiday style. From these troubled times the concept of a Glamping Holiday was born.

Glamping is a form of camping involving accommodation and facilities more luxurious than those associated with traditional camping. Glamping is a growing global phenomenon that combines camping with the luxury and amenities of a hotel. Accommodation at glamping sites include structures such as bell tents, yurts, tipis, pods, safari tents, tent cabins, vintage caravans, shepherd's huts and tree houses. The experience offers amenities such as fresh bed linens, tea service, food service, private dining and most importantly direct access to the great outdoors.

Over the past 100 years the concept of camping has evolved from an activity for military only to a popular holiday choice where currently over 1.2 million people who use camping as their main holiday within the UK and this is set to grow in my opinion.

Top 10 walks to do in the Lake District

  1. Catbells Lakeland Walk

Catbells is a fell in the English Lake District in the county of Cumbria. Catbells is a short, sharp, steep climb richly rewarded by the views of mountains and lakes. On its own this short walk could be gently ambled along to make the most of a clear day. An afternoon, or summer evening brisk stroll would delight too. Go around anti-clockwise as we suggest here, the scrambly bits are easier in ascent, and the steps off the ridge whilst tedious get you down quickly and without difficulty.



  1. Buttermere

Buttermere is a village and civil parish in the county of Cumbria, England. Buttermere (the lake) offers one of the best round-the-lake walks in the Lake District. The walk is relatively easy and level with a great 'reward for effort' ratio. The views mean that your photos make it look like you've been somewhere much more rugged. Buttermere lakeshore path circles the lake for 4½ miles (7km) with one very short stretch on the road and one 'rock step' (short scramble) where you may have to use your hands. This walk is normally completed in 3 hours.

  1. Old Man of Coniston

The Old Man of Coniston stands over the village of Coniston and can be seen from many of its streets. It is barely 3.0km (1.9 miles) from the village centre, but is over 600m of climbing. A short, but interesting linear walk with lots of industrial archaeology. Starting off above the village of Coniston with views out to Coniston Water and beyond, it climbs through old quarry workings, perhaps a stop at Low Water for a breather before the last section to the summit. You could carry on and do a longer circuit by dropping down to the Walna Scar road via Goats Water.

  1. Scafell Pike Mountain

Scafell Pike is located in the Lake District National Park, in Cumbria, and is part of the Southern Fells. Scafell Pike, 978 metres, is not only England's highest mountain but arguably one of the most stunning because of its remote location and breathtaking views. The walk has invariably been described as exhilarating and beautiful.  The view from the top, has inspired writers such as Wordsworth, Coleridge, Baines and Wainwright as, on a clear day, you can see Scotland, Wales, Ireland, and the Isle of Man!

  1. Walla Crag


Walla Crag is a fabulous viewpoint on the eastern side of Derwent Water, much of the panorama is hidden until having climbed through the trees the ascent of Cat Gill is left behind, and the crag is finally gained. The summit cairn once stood much closer to the edge than it does now having been moved back to the official Ordnance Survey spot height.

This walk is of moderate intensity and takes around two hours to complete the 4.5 mile hike.

Even the path alongside Cat Gill is interesting, steep at times, and stone pitched in places. Brief enticing glimpses of the waterfalls can be heard often tease the walker by hiding out of clear sight deep within the gill.

  1. Helvellyn

This is England's 3rd highest mountain at 3,118 feet.  A gentle warm up through the woods above Thirlmere Reservoir before climbing into the mountains means we avoid much of the bustle and scrambling on Striding and Swirrel Edges. Still a serious mountain walk, it is not especially difficult or arduous.

This is an exciting walk along Striding Edge, probably the most popular ridge walk in Britain. This is by far the most exciting way to the summit of this popular mountain. The route starts at the village of Glenridding by Ullswater. It is a horseshoe walk that circulates Red Tarn and ascends via Striding Edge then descends via Swirral Edge, an equally exciting hands on route.

  1. Ennerdale Water

Ennerdale Water is a glacial lake in the north western Lake District. Situated at the entrance to the valley of Ennerdale it is surrounded by rugged hills and forestry plantations. One of the more remote locations in the Lakes, there is a long term project to keep and enhance this 'wild' place.

Below Anglers Crag the noticeably red rock on the path is an outcrop of Ennerdale Granite which is an intrusion forced into the Borrowdale rocks of the area that occurred some 450 million years ago. Its colour comes from syenite, a mineral which oxidises to this ruddy red.

Ennerdale Water is a reservoir used for drinking water to supply the surrounding towns and villages.

Allow at least 4 hours for this walk as the paths are rough and take quite a time. A bunch of older chaps said they were taking the whole day, we don't blame them: it's a lovely walk if surprisingly tiring.


  1. Blencathra

Blencathra is one of the most enjoyable mountain to climb and explore in the Lake District. Partly this is due to its isolation; Blencathra stands apart from the other Lakeland hills looking south and west offers a vast panorama covering the vast majority of fells in the are but it is also partly due to the contrasting nature of the mountain

Hall's Fell Ridge, topping out at the highest point of Blencathra, is as Wainwright describes: "For active walkers and scramblers, this route is positively the finest way to any mountain top in the district" - a very high accolade indeed.

Once on the ridge there are many bypass paths which avoid some of the difficult sections, but much is still required. Even bypasses require good judgment, confidence, and movement skills to mitigate the risk of a simple slip ending over a precipice, or tumbling down steep grass and scree.

People have slipped from this ridge and died. The risk is very real!

  1. Stanley Ghyll Force Waterfall

This walk brings together a range of attractions to delight the eye and add to the interest. Starting and finishing at the Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway car park it offers the chance to include a train ride through gorgeous scenery. However, the sight of Stanley Force itself is alone worth the walk. The Highlights of the walk include a 40 foot waterfall,  the old village of Boot,  the beautiful valley of Eskdale, the Ravenglass and Eskdale light railway.

This 4 ½ mile walk includes some inclines but is not difficult. However, some sections can be slippery and good footwear is advisable. The walk can be shortened by returning direct from various points.

  1. Hodge Close Trail

This manageable, low-level walk provides great views of the Langdale Pikes and surrounding fells, along with an insight into the historical industrial past of the area. The walk is three miles and normally takes around two hours to complete. During the walk you will encounter the quarry.  These are incredible caves known as Hodge close were left by the quarry industry.  Hodge Close Quarry is a massive excavation of light green coloured slate, sheer-sided and unfenced, with an original worked depth from ground level of about 100m (300 feet). The 150 feet deep face is a favourite with abseilers, while the 150 feet deep flooded workings which extend below the surface are popular with divers. However around the quarry is very dangerous and must be walked around with care.



Equipment Required for these walks

Packing for Camping Trips

There’s no doubt about it, camping is hard work. Organizing gear, taking the right equipment, preparing food for several days ahead and making sure there is enough to do to entertain the whole family—it can easily overwhelm.  But it’s worth it! You’re guaranteed to make lasting memories, enjoy lots of laughs with the family, and get plenty of outdoor time.

What to pack

Preparation is essential for any outdoor adventure. Having the necessary supplies and equipment can make a difference in your overall enjoyment and experience. Checklists are a great tool to help with your organization. Your camping list will vary according to the type of camping and activities you have planned, the places you are going, the time of year and the length of your trip.

To help you get out under the stars, we’ve put together some tips for camping with the family and a camping checklist of what is essential to take. The list to the right shows our recommendations of what should be taken on a camping adventure. Add or remove items to suit your individual needs.

How to pack the camping bag

While many campers just throw their gear into their packs with no organization the day before their trip, there is a method in packing a backpack properly for convenience and to improve comfort. Learning to organize your gear properly before loading your backpack will eliminate forgotten items and help you remove unnecessary luxuries. In addition, efficiently packing your backpack will give you more comfort, convenience and stability. Lightweight items should be packed at the bottom of the backpack first, the sleeping bag usually goes in first along with other light night time supplies. After, pack medium-weight items, followed by heavy gear. The diagram shows the best way to arrange your items.

When packing your backpack, be sure to fill in all empty space with small or compressible items. For example, you can stuff a shirt inside a pot, put a roll of duct tape around your hiking poles, or remove your sleeping bag from its sack and stuff it around other gear.

Certain items like a GPS, insect repellent, snack food, rain-wear, or a headlamp may need to be accessed at any time. Because of this, these essential things should be stored inside a front pocket, top lid, or in the top of the main compartment so they can be found with minimum searching.

After your bag is loaded and packed, tighten all compression straps to limit load-shifting while hiking.




How to pack food for camping

Camping is such an idyllic way to connect with nature, but with it comes the fact that you have to bring everything you're eating and drinking in with you, not to mention

the tools and equipment to prepare and serve it with. After you've mastered the basics of planning and packing for car camping, here are a couple of tips to help you successfully plan and pack for cooking once you get there!

It’s really important to ensure that food is stored correctly as improper food storage can lead to spoilage or attract dangerous animals such as bears. The pictures below show the basic do’s and don’ts of safely storing food.

Quick Coffee Facts

If you ever need to back up why you drink coffee, feel free to use our helpful tips! 

  • Coffee isn’t actually that dehydrating.

Great news! Caffeine was once thought to be a significant diuretic, but that’s actually not true. Unless it’s consumed in large quantities (more than 500 to 600 mg a day, or two coffees) there aren’t such negative effects. In fact, studies have shown that urine output isn’t significantly changed when a person drinks a caffeinated beverage, rather than something non-caffeinated like water. So, as long as you enjoy your coffee in moderation, there’s not much to worry about.

  • Coffee can help you live a longer and healthier life.

Coffee contains lots of antioxidants (it's the biggest source of antioxidants in an average Western diet!) that help the body fight chemicals called “free radicals.” As a result, coffee drinkers are at a lower risk of diseases such as Parkinson’s Disease, Type II Diabetes, and Heart Disease. Here’s the thing, though: coffee drinkers are also more likely to have unhealthy habits such as smoking cigarettes, drinking alcohol heavily, and eating red meat, so the study shown above has been adjusted to show what could happen if these other factors weren’t in effect.

  • Coffee contains important nutrients you need to survive.

A single cup of coffee contains 11% of the daily recommended amount of Riboflavin (vitamin B2), 6% of Pantothenic Acid (vitamin B5), 3% of Manganese and Potassium, and 2% of Niacin and Magnesium.

  • Drinking coffee can help you burn fat.

Studies have shown that drinking caffeine can increase your metabolism 3 to 11%. It’s one of the few chemicals that can actually help with fat burning, so might as well drink up!

  • Caffeine is actually crystals.

The buzz you feel after drinking coffee is actually from ingesting tiny 0.0016-inch crystals of caffeine. So small, yet so energizing!

  • Caffeine starts working quickly.

It only takes ten minutes to start feeling the effects of caffeine after you take a sip of coffee, so drink up!

  • Coffee can help prevent Alzheimer’s and dementia.

Several studies have shown that coffee drinkers are up to 65% less likely to get Alzheimer’s Disease, which is a leading cause of dementia.

  • Coffee is good for your liver.

People who drink four cups of coffee a day are 80% less likely to develop cirrhosis, a condition that develops from several diseases affecting the liver.

  • Coffee houses were banned in England because that's where all the cool kids were drinking.

Okay, kind of. In 1675 King Charles II banned coffee shops because he thought that that’s where people were meeting to conspire against him.

  • Caffeine improves your performance when working out.

Caffeine increases your levels of adrenaline, and releases fatty acids from fat tissues, leading to a better physical performance by those who consume caffeine before working out.

So go ahead, grab a cup and enjoy.

Share this with your coffee-lover friends, or the not so lovers of coffee so they can see the goodness coffee brings - and its not just the taste! 


A Guide to your Perfect Sleeping Bag

When choosing a sleeping bag that is the best fit for you, it can be very overpowering due to all the different sizes and features which you must consider when buying your perfect sleeping bag.

First you need to choose the style/shape of your sleeping bag. There are two main styles; the first a simple rectangle shape which is the most basic sleeping bag it allows you to be able to move your feet and not feel claustrophobic in your sleep. You can also get this style in a double allowing you to sleep next to your partner or simply to give yourself more room. The next style is called a ‘Mummy’ sleeping bag; these are shaped to go thinner towards the bottom of the sleeping bag where your feet go this stops convection currents cooling the air therefore keeping the air warmer and closer to your body resulting in you staying warmer.

Next you need to think about what time of year you are going camping so as you can get a sleeping bag with the correct insulation temperature for you. For example sleeping bags can range for a 1 season use to a 5 season use, from summer camping to extreme freezing temperatures.                                

·         1 Season Sleeping Bags- these are considerably more compact and light weight for uses in the summer seasons or when camping abroad in warmer countries.

·         2 Season Sleeping Bags- these sleeping bags are typical good for camping between early springs to late autumn times of the year and are usually good for family camping trips.

·         3 Season Sleeping Bags- these sleeping bags can be used in mild winter evenings and are typical recommended for school trips and expeditions.

·         4 Season Sleeping Bags- these are a thick sleeping bags which are usually used in the winter were temperatures can drop below zero.

·         5 Season Sleeping Bags- these sleeping bags are used for high mountain uses and for camping trips when the temperature can reach extreme conditions below zero.

Comfort and extreme ratings offer the best chance to pick a sleeping bag which is right for your own personal body temperature. If you find you are more prone to becoming cold in the night then choose a sleeping bag which has a high comfort rating, to help you keep warmer. The extreme ratings on sleeping bags are just a guide as men and women’s body temperatures can range dramatically at night, but you yourself know who much you feel the cold and the comfort ratings offer you help when choosing the right sleeping bag for yourself.

The next factor may seem silly but it is very important. It is weather your sleeping bag has a left or right handed zip. If you have the wrong sided zip then it can be very awkward to zip up and down your sleeping bag. The rule to prevent this happening is; left hand zip for right handed people and
right hand zip for left handed people.

Another factor to consider is the weight of the sleeping bag if you are backpacking far distances then you won’t want to be lugging round a really heavy sleeping bag. You will also want to consider the size of the sleeping bag you don’t want it to take up all the room in you backpack as you will need room for other items. For thicker sleeping bags then a compression sack can help reduce the volume of the sleeping bag creating more room in your backpack.

Peter Jones Klick Fast Dock For MOLLE Vests + Straps – DOCKMV

The Peter Jones MOLLE Klick Fast Dock has been designed with the need for the Police and other Emergency Services that are moving over to MOLLE vests to be able to attach radios and just about anything else that has a Klick Fast stud on them.

The dock fits to any MOLLE platform and is stable by using webbing and stud fasteners as shown below.


Contact Left are an official supplier of these to the UK Police and these are now worn on a wide range of MOLLE plate carriers and Body Armour ensuring all kit can attach securely

A Guide to Lightweight Camping

When going camping it can very easy to over pack. However, this can very easily lead to overflowing rucksacks, aching backs and shoulders (and even injury), and generally ruin your trip.

Have you considered lightweight camping?

Lightweight camping is pretty straightforward – just stripping out all the gear that isn’t essential, and choosing products that are more compact and weigh less.

Firstly, you should leave behind non-essentials, but what should you take with you?


Lightweight camping tent

Your tent is probably going to be the heaviest piece of equipment you take with you, so it’s important to try and be as reasonable with space as you can. A one-person tent is ideal for the warmer months, although in winter you might want to consider a two-person tent to accommodate extra kit.

Wild Country Terra Nova make excellent lightweight tents, but most brands such as Highlander have suitable selections, like the Blackthorn tent.

Helpful tip:

Use nearby rocks as tent pegs.


Lightweight sleeping bag

Getting a good night’s sleep is important, and going lightweight doesn’t mean you have to forego getting some decent shut eye. Mummy sleeping bags are a good choice, as they tend to be warmer, lighter and have a smaller pack size. Snugpak have sleeping bags that have a good comfort temperature along with a suitable pack size.

Then it’s a choice between down and synthetic filling. Down is lighter, packs smaller, and has incredible warmth-to-weight ratio – although it is more expensive, damp/wet conditions can affect the performance of the bag. Synthetic is cheaper but generally heavier and bulkier.

Opt for a 1-2 season sleeping bag in nice weather to cut down on the bulk. You could use a 1-2 season bag even in colder weather, and just put more layers of clothing on or use a sleeping bag liner, but we’d always recommend having a sleeping bag that provides the appropriate level of warmth.


Season Season Rating                          Perfect for…                       Temperature Range


Season One        Summer camping where weather is mild. Indoor use.     +5 degrees

Season Two        The UK late spring to early autumn temperatures.           +0 degrees


Season Three    Autumn/Winter. Mild to cold nights, without frost but feeling chilly. 0 to -5 degrees

Season Four       Cold winter nights where it may even be frost/snow.  –12 and lower to +8 degrees

See all our sleeping bags.


Lightweight sleeping mat

A good quality sleeping mat is also a key part of getting a good night’s sleep,  it’s worth getting a good one. Granted, you could opt not to take a mat if you really want to cut down on bulk.

¾ length self-inflating mats are a great option, as they’re nice and comfy and also pack pretty small. For winter, even if you’re trying to go lightweight, we’d still advise taking a full-length sleeping mat, as they’ll help reflect the heat back up to your body and reduce cold spots coming through the cold ground.

Helpful tips:

Use a cheap foil emergency blanket under your sleeping mat for extra insulation.

Use your backpack instead of a pillow.


Lightweight stoves & cookware

If you’re going to be doing a spot of cooking, then you’re going to need a lightweight stove and cookware

Jetboils are excellent at what they do, boiling water very quickly, but they can be a little bulky.  However there are large ranges of smaller camp stoves that will help reduce space, but may take longer to heat food. The Highlander Blade Mark II can boil 500ml of water in under 3 minutes! Size: packed 15cm x 11.7cm. Weight: 393g (unboxed), 495g (boxed).


Lightweight rucksacks & backpacks

The time of year and extent of the lightweight camping trip will determine the size of rucksack you will need. Around 60L capacity should be fine for most camping – however, in summer you should be able to use an even smaller rucksack as you’ll need fewer layers and a thinner sleeping bag.  Dry bags are a great idea to keep your kit dry and organised.

Helpful tips:

 If you’re taking a map, cut out and take with you only the bit you need.

Toilet paper – remove the cardboard center, so it packs flat, and put it in a plastic bag.

Cut up a straw. Fill the pieces with toothpaste for one-use packets. Seal the ends. With a lighter  

Use a head torch rather than carrying a bulky torch in your back.

Make a small first aid kit – put plasters, a few pills, antiseptic wipes, and whatever else will fit in to a little pouch. 

Dry out your gear – if it gets wet, then it’s going to weigh a lot more than if it’s dry.

Try a microfiber instead of a beach towel



When camping you only need the essential items of clothing, as this can be the main cause of over packing, due to the weather being temperamental.

Try layering thin clothing rather than bringing big, bulky items – base layers are ideal for this, helping to keep you warm while taking up very little room. Garments made from merino wool are also good as it’s quite lightweight and dries quickly if it gets wet.

In terms of footwear, ditch the walking boots and try walking shoes or trail shoes instead. They’re much more lightweight and should be perfectly suitable for most short to mid-length walks. However if you do need more substantial boots there are a large range such as the Aigle boot that are sturdy but not too heavy.



Food is another part of packing that can be very heavy and take up a lot of space. Dried and dehydrated food is ideal. It won’t spoil as easily, but it also packs much smaller than regular food. You can have whole meals without having to take all the ingredients separately – and don’t worry, they’re very tasty and nutritionally balanced!



Water is absolutely essential to your well being when camping or backpacking, so always make sure you have access to some, one way or another. You’ll need it for drinking and for cooking if you’re using dried food, so always ensure you have enough. Ensuring you have a strong substantial water bottle is key when outdoors – Klean Kanteen offer bottles that are safe to use with all liquids hot or cold and lightweight

Use a collapsible water container or carrier so when it’s empty, it’s much easier to store. You can also buy hydration bladders that will fit inside most rucksacks if you have space.

You may have access to natural fresh water while you’re away, such as a tarn, and if you want to get your water from there, make sure you have water purification tablets with you or UV water purifiers that are lightweight and reliable (it’s good to have some of these with you anyway). However, to be on the safe side, try and stick to running water if possible.

Helpful tip:

Use cold or frozen water bottle to keep food fresher for longer - this can also be used as an ice pack in the case of an injury 


One last and very important tip:  never take any unnecessary risks when lightweight camping. Always make sure you have enough equipment with you to stay warm, fed and hydrated.



Military Outdoor Nyrex / Nirex Folders

What is a Nyrex / Nirex Folder

These folders are made from a waterproof plastic and have clear plastic sleeves to allow paper documents to inserted and then used and referred to when outdoors, in the field, on excercise, on the range or on operations. These are also used by outdoor enthusiasts to put printed maps in and route cards etc. Nyrex's folders are generally soft and can be

Types and Sizes of Nyrex / Nirex Folders

Many types of Nyrex folders are available, many are foreign made and although generally good quality many of the non UK manufactured Nyrex's do not have clear pages meaning at times it can be difficult to read the information contained within the sleeve. To ensure you get a high quality Nyrex folder which has clear sheets that is suitable for military use ensure you buy one manufactured by UKOM (UK Outdoor Manufacturing). The UKOM Nyrex's are 100% UK Manufactured and to the highest standard.

Nyrex folders normally come in 3 sizes



and A4

although any size can be manufactured and UKOM have manufactured both larger and smaller.

The standard number of sleeves available are 20 page Nyrexs, 30 page Nyrexs and 40 page.

The standard colour for Nyrex folders is green although several versions are available in black and any colour and personlised design can be made.







Military Use

An example of when  military personnel will use these, is when giving orders, normally an A5 Nyrex will be used for this, the pre printed paper sheets are inserted and then the user can write on the clear sheets when needed.  Other inserts that the military will put in there Nyrex's include:

(TAC and Ground brief, Platoon Orders inserts, SPOTOCA card (Warning Order), Aide memoire - combat estimate & Os.doc, Section Quick Battle Orders, The Pl Sgt in the advance and attack, The Pl Sgt in defence, Pl Comd QBOs, Pl Comd Advance to contact Aide Memoire, Pl Q4 effects schematic, Duties of a sentry / stag list, Range Card, Simple range card, Section Ammo and Cas card, Slimmed down Section Ammo / Cas card, Quality Warning Order, Extraction of orders schematic, Sangar / Sentry brief, CBRN state, CBRN Threat Levels, Contact Numbers, Flap sheet, Guard List, HLS Dimensions, Location of key pers, Messages, Post Ex MS report, Radio diagram, Radio Net, Range Card, Readiness states, Sentry checklist, Sick Parade, Tp site plan, Veh state as at, Vehicles, Weapon numbers, Casualties, Guide to the staff branches (G1-G9), Route Card, Artillery ranges and effects, OPCOM(Mike)/OPCON(November)/TACOM(Mike)/TACON(November), MEDEVAC 9 Liner, A5 Patrol reportsFull patrol report, SADCHAP, Zap number auto spreadsheet, Genfor Aide Memoire , Useful Principles, Driver brief, Military Map Reading, Appraisals / Tp Comd notebook, Tp/Pl Comd notebook, Gunner Tp notebook, Individual Activity Record, Post Ex MS report, MPAR)

Above are just some of the types of information that military may put in there Nyrex Folders.

Outdoor Use

Many outdoor enthusiasts use Nyrex folders for putting maps, route cards, weather reports, emergency contact details, instructions and many other items that they need to keep dry in. Also those who work outdoor that need any paper information to read from and keep dry use Nyrex folders including teachers, guides, forest rangers etc.

Police / Fire Service / Ambulance Service / Security use of Nyrex Folders

The above services and users tend to use the black Nyrex folders and use them when outdoors and also on courses.

We always recommend buying the UK Outdoor Manufactured UKOM Nyrex folders as these not only have clear pages making them ideal for all users they are also made to the highest possible standard.


UK Terrorrism Threat Levels

Current UK Threat Level Critical (23rd May 2017)

What the threat levels mean

Threat levels are designed to give a broad indication of the likelihood of a terrorist attack.

  • LOW means an attack is unlikely.
  • MODERATE means an attack is possible, but not likely
  • SUBSTANTIAL means an attack is a strong possibility
  • SEVERE means an attack is highly likely
  • CRITICAL means an attack is expected imminently

Threat level history

Since 2006, information about the national threat level has been available on the MI5 and Home Office websites. In September 2010 the threat levels for Northern Ireland-related terrorism were also made available.


Date Threat from international terrorism Threat from Northern Ireland-related terrorism
in Northern Ireland in Great Britain
24 September 2010 SEVERE SEVERE
(first published)
(first published)
22 January 2010 SEVERE
20 July 2009 SUBSTANTIAL
4 July 2007 SEVERE
30 June 2007 CRITICAL
13 August 2006 SEVERE
10 August 2006 CRITICAL
1 August 2006 SEVERE
(first published)