Saturday 25 January 2020

BAM #13

After what seemed like a slow start to 2020, I managed to cook up some adventure. Yes indeed, Jamie and I went for a wild camp. This was my first camp of 2020 and my 13th consecutive BAM (Bivy-A-Month). 
So pleased I managed to complete this camp as it very nearly didn't happen. After making initial plans, some of my friends dropped out just days before the planned date due to sickness, travel and work. (For what it's worth, I'm sick of work and would like to travel). Anyways, Jamie was still up for some adventure, so adventure we did!
We cycled to somewhere near the Heart of England Forest and then hike-a-biked for a spell. Soggy, muddy ground and some incline finally led to a near perfect camp spot. Without further ado, we set up camp. Then we cooked in the great outdoors using my new super-ace frying pan and washed down our grub with some fluid. Delicious. Morrison's Cumberland sausages and a mouthful of JD is hard to beat.
On this occasion, both Jamie and I were using Rab 'Ridge Raider' bivy's. I have used a lot of different bivy's to date and highly rate this one. The fabric feels really nice and tough - not quite as tough as my army Gore-Tex bivy but not far off, and much lighter and less bulky. It's about 3 x the weight and size of my Outdoor Research Helium Bivy but still light and this bag did not condensate and has a very impressive 'head' section that is wide and opens nicely (not clam like). Unlike some of my other shelters, this is fully hooped too. Jamie thinks the bag could be improved by having some loops at the foot section to lift it and make the end box like. All in all, I think this is my favourite bivy to date.
Always great to adventure with Jamie. First month of the year has proved a bit stressy for us both in terms of work. We were pleased to be away from our jobs, chilling out and catching up.
Slept reasonably well throughout the night. Was awoken on a couple of occasions to the sound of a fox barking (sounded like he was really near to my shelter, I bet he could smell the sausages) and an owl hooting. I'm sure I heard the odd snore from Jamie's direction too!

When morning came it was still dark and misty. We cooked the final sausages and washed them down with a tasty Jasmine green tea. Once we had packed up camp, it was nice to see the clear views as day light had now appeared. Such a beautiful spot! As we went our way, heading home, we saw a couple of deer skip off in the opposing direction.

On reflection, this month of January hasn't been so bad at all. I have managed to keep up with my challenges and have completed a ParkRun, a BAM and a 200k cycle. Sure, work is a drag and I haven't cycled much commute-wise but I have completed goals for the month. In addition to that, my family life has been pretty awesome and my kids and wife have kept me entertained too!

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