Simple things become fond memories

Children these days have so much, such a bigger connection worldwide, no need to move from one room, gadgets everywhere, they can become fixated onto what we think is an absolute waste of time like these YouTube channels that they sit and watch/listen to whilst playing games and to what benefit?
My youngest is a nightmare to motivate with all of this mush and fodder available to him at the press of a button but get him outside and he is in a different world, the world I grew up in where the simplest things become an adventure that you will remember and give valuable lessons.
This day we woke up early and like someone addicted to smoking he reaches and grabs one of many gadgets and sits in bed getting his first daily fix.
I shout to him “get dressed we are going out”. He’s up and dressed for some outside action and says “I haven’t had breakfast yet”
“We are going to make it in the forest” I reply.
So a 15 minute journey and we are out in the woods smashing ice on puddles until we get to an area I found the other day where there is a hunting platform and a good view of the marshes.
So it’s time to make breakfast I have brought with me fire kit, wood gas stove, oats, milk and maple syrup. First task I teach him how to prepare a tinder bundle made up of Birch bark we harvested on a previous trip and Bracken. So the next lesson is using a knife on a Gerri Todd teaching him not to push to hard and within 5 attempts the tinder is alight and he uses the saucepans lid to put the tinder into the stove and add the pieces of wood to create a heat to cook his breakfast.

Such a simple little micro adventure but has taught him a lot.
We played in the forest for a while, had soup and coffee together, made sure we cleaned up and headed back.
Excursions like this cost next to nothing, the adventure can be extended to spend some time on animal tracks, whittling, knife use and anything else that will help our children grow up similar to us.
Where we had no connection to the world apart from an AM radio, 4 channels on the tv and weekly magazines.
We spent our time covered in dirt, fish slime, grazes on knees, up trees, wet shoes after falling in dykes and went home having fantastic adventures.
Find time to give our children the chance to benefit from the outdoors it doesn’t cost much.

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A dusting of the white stuff.

I always look forward to winter but as always it never comes to the east corner of Suffolk anymore no more heavy snow.
I love to snow. I’ve done winter seasons in the alps in my younger years but never managed to get out in it doing the stuff I enjoy doing now like walking, bushcraft and camping.
After a failed attempt at getting out the other day which saw me getting the car stuck in mud and in the process bending and smashing my phone I thought I would try again the next day.
So early start of towards the Suffolk coast to the forest at Dunwich. I had planned to have a go at a new stove I’d been sent so found an area near to the marsh to setup. I was planning to try some tarp configurations that I could use when I plan to walk the Great Glen Way and hammock camp but wanted to try some configurations for ground dwelling if need be.
So as me and the faithful dog started walking through the trees it started to snow so I decided to setup and sit and watch the deer across the marshes and try this new little stove.

The stove is a Chinese copy of the bush box and I must say it done its job but it doesn’t beat a wood gas stove.

The stove comes in 5 bits of steel which is easily snapped together and my 750ml titanium mug sits very well on it. Now I had used my primitive fire starting kit to light the fire but this took longer as I didn’t have enough tinder with me had to use some gauze from med kit.

It worked quite well and is very small and light but the wood gas stove fits inside my pan and is more fuel efficient.
I had ago at some tarp configurations and found that the open ended shelter was the best one to use.
So all that is needed for this configuration is 9 pegs and 1 walking pole. 2 poles could be used to create a bit mor me height at the feet end. But all in all a good setup as I can use my exped mat on top of my poncho and wrap myself in hammock under blanket and quilt.

The Great Glen Way is about 80miles from Fort William to Inverness in Scotland. We are planning to hammock camp on route but need to plan in case I need to ground dwell on route and the above configuration is very good. It is open at one end but there are other configurations that can be used if weather is that bad.

Pack contents for this summers trip.

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