Two years ago – in autumn of 2019 – I signed up for a 100km march in Vienna, that was supposed to be in April 2020, on the weekend of my birthday. As we all know, that minor thing called Covid happened in between, and thus this particular event did not. However, from this moment, the idea of walking around Vienna in one go was planted firmly in my head. Yesterday – Oct 23rd 2021 – it became a reality.
For the last year, I’ve been working with a fantastic new organisation, MY Great Escape. We support women who’ve survived abusive relationships to have adventures, with the aim of offering them a physical challenge and space in the outdoors to heal and build their confidence and self esteem.
When camping out for a night, there’s nothing like a hot cup of coffee in the morning or a warm meal in the evening. Even on a single day trip, you may want to have a warm lunch or an afternoon tea. Unfortunately, a cooking kit takes up quite a lot of weight and space speaking in ultralight terms. Carrying an extra 700g or more for just a cup of tea or a single meal seems unreasonable. Luckily there is a solution for those of us who can’t live without anything warm in their bellies. Here’s what I use.
A Bivvi (or Bivy, Bivvy, Bivi etc.) bag, is a waterproof bag that fits around your sleeping bag so that you can sleep outside without the need for a tent. It acts as both a groundsheet and cover for your bed. In the past they were mostly used by the army for fast and light travel, but they’ve become a lot more popular among civillian campers in recent years, particularly ultralight hikers and wild campers.
Last Sunday I went hiking with a coworker. Since this was his first hike this year, we chose a relatively easy route of about 15km and a total of 1000m ascent. I knew I had done much harder hikes before, so I decided to take the big backpack, as an exercise for our summer trek in Hardangervidda. So I packed our Spitsbergen tent, which has about 5.7kg all in all, but I did not take a lot of extra stuff otherwise. And I was shocked to find that I ended up with a backpack of about 16kg. That means even without the tent this number would land me at approximately 10kg for a day trip. Impossible! That’s way too much!