Outdoor Advice


outdoor advice image of couple walking down hill with walking polesWant some outdoor advice before you go for a nice walk? So what do you need? Well, nothing really to be honest. Just get out and enjoy the fresh air. If you want to walk a little further and say make half a day of it then you’ll probably want to start thinking about your comfort and also taking a few extras in case you need them. This means you’ll need at least a small daysack to perhaps carry a light pack-away jacket, jumper, drink and a snack so you can at least keep dry, warm and get some energy into you if you’re needing it. It’s always a good idea to let a good friend or a family member know where you’re going and when you intend to be back just in case you run into trouble. As your walking distance and fitness increases over time you’ll start to see the limitations of your kit and so you’ll maybe start to think “my feet are a little sore after today’s walk – maybe I should get some better boots?” and guess what – we can help. Another great product that I think everyone should have is the walking pole. I always carry a pair of these and they’ve been great. I admit, I do have a dodgy knee so I’ve come to rely on them sometimes. Even if you’re young and fit though, sometimes an unexpected injury or some difficult ground will make you wish you had them. A great trick with walking poles is that they can be used to form a basic stretcher/seat to help two or more people carry an injured friend off a hill. One thing I would say is this, don’t take risks, it’s not worth it. Look after yourself and your friends. If a hill feels too high or a river seems slightly too deep to cross then don’t do it. Listen to your gut and you can nearly always go back the way you came or take another route. Keep safe, warm, fed, drink plenty and plan ahead. Oh, nearly forgot to say… I’ve been up many hills that have had no mobile phone reception at all so don’t over rely on your phone working when you need it most.

Outdoor Advice – Planning

We’ve got some more detailed outdoor advice below for those of you that want to be prepared for anything.

This list is based on our own experiences and opinions and as such should not be taken as a definitive list for all. You should tailor any lists you use to cater for your specific needs, skills, experience and job in hand.

1st Harrison Ltd do not accept any responsibility regarding the advice and information provided which should be used as a basis to start thinking with.

Outdoor Advice – TOP TIP

Once you have your own definitive list you should tick off each item as you pack it to ensure you don’t forget or double up kit. Before any trip it is best to get your entire team together (if possible) to oversee each others kit and how it is packed. Doing this allows time to fix mistakes, remove redundant kit and share each others knowledge.

Things to consider when planning/improving a kit list:

How long are you away for
What terrain are you likely to cover
What tasks lay ahead
Can you get new supplies on the trip i.e. take cash for shops or reach a basecamp
Can some kit be split between team members
It’s a good idea to write down every day you will be away and to write down each task you can think may occur.
This gives you an idea of how your kit will be used and will also highlight transportation and/or supply issues.

Outdoor Advice – Outer Clothing

Base layer t-shirt
Base layer trousers
Loose fit trousers
Good belt
Jumper / Fleece / Soft shell
Windproof jacket (waterproof is also good but not essential if you have a waterproof poncho/jacket too
Hats – wool or waterproof, peak, ear flaps, protective – all things to consider
Gloves – leather is best
Swimwear – if required

Outdoor Advice – Footwear

Socks -thermal, coolmax, travel, hiking, blister prevention, normal, hot weather how many pairs…
Walking Trainers, shoes,hiking boots, military boots, snow boots, crampons
Spare laces (or paracord)
Boot care kit – G-Wax (waterproofing), polish, brushes etc.

Outdoor Advice – Rucksack

Rucksack liners – to prevent damp
Drysacks – to prevent damp
Waterproof rucksack cover
Day sack – great for a days hiking
Hiking Rucksacks
45 litre rucksack – ideal for carrying that extra bit of kit but keeping weight to a minimum
65 litre rucksack- good allrounder. Large enough to carry all you need if you are carefull. Shouldn’t be too heavy if prepared well.
85 litre rucksack – great workhorse for expeditions where you need to carry everything including food e.g. for a weeks walking. Probably too heavy for some when full
Military Style Rucksack – great for hiking or patrol
100 litre – serious storage for serious journeys or ideal as a travel rucksack where you are not expected to hike long distances
70-100 litre Ruckcase – Perfect for International travel on plains, trains & automobiles. Can be used as a travel case or as a rucksack. Includes detachable daysack
Note: security padlocks are great for some zippers

Outdoor Advice – Navigation/Comunication

Maps – 1:25,000, 1:50,000
Notebook and pen(s)
Mobile (beware of bad reception)
Mobile battery charger (wind-up or plug-in)
Sat-Nav (check what countries are covered by your software)
Torch (batteries, kinetic) – light filters required?

Outdoor Advice – First Aid

Painkillers, plasters, blister patches, foot talc, safety pins, bandages, water purification, sun lotion/bug repellent – Avon’s “Skin So Soft” is great, malaria tablets(doctor), personal medication (doctor), cotton buds, small scissors/pocket knife
Leg/arm support bandages if required

Outdoor Advice – Camping

Food – IMPORTANT – check items can be cooked on your intended stove/fire. If using dry food ensure you will have enough water. Remove all unnecessary packaging as it weighs a lot!
Pots, pans, mess tins
Mugs & Flasks
Knife Fork Spoon
Can opener
Cooker – solid, gas, etc
Fuel – solid blocks, gas, etc
Fire Lighting kit – lighter, matches, magnesium block, etc
Wash Kit – include toothbrush, toothpaste, soap, shampoo, shaving kit, towel, toilet paper, tampons, wipes
Sewing kit
Folding Field Toilet for base camp – take replacement bags
Water bottles/hydration pack – drinking water – always at least 2 liters- lasts me a day usually. Splitting your water into more than one bottle can help balance your rucksack weight out and reduces chance of loosing all your water in a silly accident.
Additional cooking/cleaning water?
Tent – what size e.g. I use a two man tent to ensure I can sleep with my rucksack inside. Check you have spare tent pegs & no leaks!
Hammock – if required
Basha / Poncho
Paracord – always good to have – you’ll be surprised how usefull this is in so many situations!
Gaffa tape
Emergency bivi bag
Sleeping bags – tropical, 1- 2 season, 3-4 season,4+ season extreme climate
Sleeping bag liner
Sleeping mat – foam, self-inflating, full comfort or lightweight
Mosquito nets
small emergency survival kit – can include various items e.g. matches, fishing line & weights, small blade, wire saw, button compass, whistle, a durex is a great emergency water container, water purification, fishing hooks, needles

Outdoor Advice – Hiking

Walking poles x 2
Waterproof map case
Leg Gaiters – to protect feet &∓ legs from water etc
Neck gaiters – to protect neck & face. Can also be a hat so very versatile
Shemagh/scarf/scrim net – olive, desert, DPM, digital, snow, etc
Ice-axe – if required
Pace counter

Outdoor Advice – Identification / Paperwork

Ensure you take any registration paperwork that may be required i.e. booking numbers
Do you need id with you to proove identity, age, driving licence…

Outdoor Advice – International Travel

Camera – remember films, memory sticks and/or chargers

Outdoor Advice – Military

Camo face paint
Weaponry – include cleaning kit
Job specific kit
Radio equipment
Webbing – tailored to job

If you need more help than we have provided in our outdoor advice pages, please contact us and we’ll try to help.


Shop on-line or call us now on 01506 431100 for all your camping, hiking, walking, running, cycling or expedition supplies.

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  1st Harrison Ltd. Car, Camping, and Military Gear

1st. Harrison Ltd
Office hours are between
9am - 5pm Mon to Thurs
9am - 3pm Fri

Tel: 01506 431100
[email protected]

1st Harrison Ltd
Unit 1,
Knightsridge Ind Est,
Knightsridge East,
West Lothian.
EH54 8RA
Vat No: 877 9024 77