Lightweight multi use hammock and tarp tents. I like the idea of having a choice of whether to hang between the trees or ground dwelling when there are no trees or weather and environment puts you on the ground.
You have the ability to adapt and also being lightweight you are not carrying items that you won’t need.
To be able to deal with these scenarios my kit is as follows.
This then gives the ability to hang or ground dwell. In the hammock setup you won’t feel the cold on your back as the sleep mat will be used in the hammock with the sleeping bag.
In the ground setup with your can setup a a-frame tarp using a ridge line if you have anything to tie too or you can use your walking poles and guy lines.
Another option for Lightweight multi use hammock and tarp tents is the hex peak setup but this leaves the tarp open on the front but utilising the poncho as a door you can overcome water egress. In this setup there is plenty of space in side to keep out of dripping rain but it is vitally important to setup with the rear of the shelter facing the wind.
There is an option for a fully enclosed tarp tent, this will stop any water egress apart from running water underneath but down fall is it will heavily condensate up due to no air flow.
So using this setup you have the ability of both hammocking and ground camping. If you had the DD jungle hammock you could lose the poncho as the base of this hammock is waterproof but I like the idea of having the poncho if the heavens open whilst walking, using it as a temporary shelter whilst stopping for lunch etc or using it as a door with the hex peak setup.
This setup with the rest of your lightweight kit shouldn’t bring your weight over 10% of your body weight.
I always say try to fit work around your life and not the other way around and with me working a shift pattern which is different to friends that enjoy the same mentality towards life and same interests it is rare that we get the time to catch up and head out for a micro adventure.
This night was one of those rare occasions when the planets where inline and we could do a Micro adventure wild camping on a beach.
So a late start we got the beach around 19:00 with a few dog walkers still about we assessed the area to find there was a bit of ground swell and the tide had been nearly up to the cliff so sleeping on the beach was a no go.
A little while later we had found a space within the bracken that we could setup our tents and get stuck into our micro adventure wild camping on a beach.
Micro adventure wild camping on a beach
Camping on the cliff
I had planned to hammock camp but brought a sleep mat on the off chance I would be able to hang so used my 3×3 tarp to make a shelter to sleep in.
This setup is really versatile but does leave the opening at the front open to the weather.
I had thought about this the other day and quickly had a go at developing a door using my poncho which worked really well so I am happy to use this setup whilst walking the lakes later in the year.
I thought I would take this opportunity to try a product I was sent from a company in Sweden called Sjö och Hav that produces eco friendly products such as mosquito repellent, soaps and shampoos that are perfect for use in an outdoor environment actually in any environment as they are all biodegradable.
So many people are taking powered devices with them when they head for the hills nowadays.
Whether the device is for navigation? Photos, videos or something else they mostly are power hungry so if you are out for a while they will need recharging.
A smartphone is a great companion when out as it can cover nearly all aspects of many devices.
It can be your map, gps, camera, video camera and obviously emergency contact (if in range).
But they all need a recharge at some point and having a Power storage outdoors is a must.
With the increase of drones being used for filming its either a case of increasing your pack weight by carrying portable power or carrying something to recharge enroute.
I’ve tried a few options for portable power and the best setup I have found is a 22400 mAh battery pack and a small solar charger.
The battery pack in itself isn’t light but it can fully charge a iPhone 7 times and if you have you smartphone on low power mode it won’t need charging fully everyday.
This is a great way to have a Power storage outdoors. I use this battery pack for up to 4 days hiking. This will charge phone and a few camera batteries.
Other things to save power consumption on your smart phone:
Turn off WiFi & Bluetooth if not needed
Put device into airplane mode if you don’t need to receive calls
Turn brightness down on the screen
Make sure no apps are running in the background.
Purchase a battery pack cover for smartphone
Now, as battery packs there are many different solar chargers from the small solar chargers that will trickle charge a battery pack to the larger panels that will be able to recharge a battery pack or a device (depending on the weather).
The panel I use is from a company called ‘PORTAPOW’.
It has Two voltage regulated USB output sockets with SmartCharge technology to charge the latest smartphones and tablets from Apple, Samsung, HTC, Nokia etc directly at high speed.
It weighs 310g / 0.7 lbs and a compact 23cm x 16cm x 2cm when closed (smaller footprint than an iPad) or 23cm x 32cm x 1cm when open – making it significantly smaller than other solar panels with similar power.
Flexible 22% efficiency PET laminated monocrystalline panels woven into a tough waterproofed polyester fabric case making it suitable for use in the rain, a pocket on the back keeps the USB sockets protected.
Folds shut with hidden magnetic clasps for storage.
8 mounting loops around the panel to attach it to a backpack, bicycle, etc.
The pocket is large enough to store a smartphone during charging.
The built-in stand lets you angle the panel towards the Sun and keeps the panel clean and off the ground.
Angling a solar panel correctly can have a huge impact on the energy captured.
I have found that this panel will directly charge my iPhone or camera but I find it is best to have the panel recharging the battery pack constantly and have to device plugged into the battery pack to charge to keep your Power storage outdoors.
Even on a cloudy day there is enough power to recharge either my camera battery or iPhone.
One other point is not to reply solely on a electronic devices especially for navigation or emergency assistance as devices can fail leading to no power or if they take a tumble or get wet always have a backup method of summoning assistance like leaving a copy of your route with a check in time or using a GPS tracker.
This all started about 22 years ago when I had my first experience of this Micro adventure -Scuba Diving. I was working in Corsica and I done my first try dive.
I have always loved the water grown up paddling, swimming and surfing and learning to dive was on my bucket list.
It wasn’t until the next summer when working as a instructor in a hotel in Southern Italy that I started to climb the ladder of scuba diving where I took courses up to advanced diver.
The following year I was working in Tunisia where I done some more diving but it wasn’t until I went to the island of Rhodes in Greece that I studied up to the level of Divemaster.
The following year life took me out to Cyprus where I started working in Viking Divers and also done my instructors training.
Micro adventure – Scuba Diving
This year it was the turn of my youngest to learn. The easiest and more time beneficial way to learn is to either do all the theory at home or theory and confined water training.
You can purchase a android or apple app which does all of the theory, knowledge reviews, final exam and will send the diving centre you will do the open water dives your results.
So theory completed it is a case of 5 confined water sessions and 4 open water dives. Now the youngest is 10 so his maximum depth to dive as a junior open water diver is 12m.
The whole cost of learning to dive this way was €400 including his certification card.
The main issue with children of this age learning to scuba dive is their size compared to size / weight of some of the equipment so some assistance is needed donning and removing equipment also some skills they have to complete can be difficult due to size of equipment.
Once all of his skills where completed and open water dives done we spent a day on a dive safari where we all could dive together and enjoy diving without skills and assessments.
We visited Cape Greco and done a dive that I always loved taking divers to ‘Tunnels and Caves’
This is a great dive site where the dive finishes surfacing through a hole in the roof of a cave.
I would recommend participating in a try dive first to see whether they like it first as it is quite expensive if they decided they don’t like it. A try dive is also a great little Micro adventure – Scuba Diving
The adults had planned to dive the Zenobia wreck but due to illness this didn’t happen.
The Zenobia is a 180m three deck Ro-Ro ferry full of truck and cargo that lays on its port side at 40m that can be reached at 18m so to deep for the boys but a fantastic wreck for all to enjoy. This dive is its own micro adventure.