Clothes and footwear

I’ve already told you how good the Salomon Fastpacker GTX boots are, so I won’t labour the point. I also took my Nike Mayfly shoes to relax in. Strictly speaking I could have left them behind but it was nice to change into trainers at the end of the day. At 250g they weren’t a major weight penalty. I also took some lightweight Aguille gaiters, which I didn’t use. Gaiters are generally superfluous in the Cairngorms, but they would have been useful in boggy conditions and only weigh 186g.

Socks were Merinowalk by Chocolate Fish. I love these. I’ve nearly worn them out by using them all winter. Liners socks were Bridgdale coolmax and M&S merino. Both were excellent.

Unsung heroes were my Montane Terra Pants, which are simply the best trekking trouser you can have. I also took some Lowe Alpine dryflo leggings, the lightest version and some Montane featherlite pants for around camp and sleeping. Both were worth taking.

My jacket was a Paramo Third Element. Again you know my views and they didn’t change. Superb jacket. I found I was able to remove and put on the hood/sleeve part without removing my rucksack, which was useful when the weather couldn’t make up its mind wheter to rain or not. My overtrousers were Berghaus paclite, which I think are the best lightweight overtrousers. The long zip is so useful for putting on and off and venting. This is my second pair and the material on the newer pair seems softer and less crackly.

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Me in heat conservation mode

For an extra layer of warmth I took my Berghaus Infinity smock. In the end I probably could have managed without, but it was cosy at the end of the day and would have been useful if it had been colder.

My Icebreaker Chase long sleeve top was superb although by the end of day four I overwhelmed it with smell. I really like the perforated panels at the sides and on the back. My Icebreaker merino 140 short sleeve I hardly used. I took a Craghoppers long sleeve polyamide long sleeved shirt, mindful of the problems from the sun that I suffered last year. It was a real god-send on the last day, far more comfortable than merino in the heat. It was also remarkably crease resistant.

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Me in Munro conquering mode

Underwear was Haglofs active boxers and Icebreaker Beast boxers. The Haglofs were much better as they evaporated sweat quickly, so I’ll get another pair.  Hats were a thin Mountain Hardwear beenie (brilliant), Paramo cap (not strictly necessary but useful) and a Salomon XA + Cap (best sun hat I have with good ventilation and I used the “Foreign Legion” neck flap for the first time). I took a polar buff and an ordinary buff, both were useful, especially when it was windy. Gloves were Marmot iGloves, excellent and surprisingly wind resistant.

I probably could have taken less clothes as the weather (out of the wind) was reasonably mild. On the other hand if it had been cooler I would have been thankful for the extra base layer and warm layer. I was also grateful that I had planned for the warm weather on Friday, particularly taking a shirt.

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Me in changeable weather mode

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