Bunny Wood Weekend

With the sun blazing down on the glorious Essex countryside myself and an old army buddy Tomo decided to spend the weekend in our Bunny woods.

Friday night I met Tomo in Tillingham and we both enjoyed a cracking cold pint in the local pub before heading off to the woods.

The plan for the weekend was to start controlling the rabbit population with both snares and air rifles so saturday morning after breakfast we prepped our snares and walked them out looking for likely runs and sign of recent usage.

Once the snares were set we bimbled back to our camp and set up a little target range to practice "plinking" with both the air rifle and Pistol as well as a catapult. Plinking is great fun we enjoyed this distraction!!

Overall the snares were a great success we set 12 and took 4 rabbits but all bar two of the other snares had been triggered but failed to catch anything - so we were very happy with the results indeed - we even shared our catch with the local fox!

Great weekend with a good mate - cheese board included!! Looking forward to the next one!


Troll Hem and Nordmarken

Sweden has long been, in my opinion as well as the opinions of other well respected outdoors folk, the best place for the bushcrafter. The right to roam or access laws there married to the large wilderness areas make it a bushcraft paradise - added to the fact its actually cheaper and easier to travel to Sweden than to travel to say, Scotland all add up to a place where wilderness dreams can really come true.

So dear reader VALKOMMEN TILL TROLL HEM home in sweden.
But that was only half my reason for this visit - the other ............

Well ok not just for the stunning scenery, the crystal clear waters, the clean air and the abundant wildlife - I also went there to tie up the lose ends which needed tweaking before launching Nordmarken UK's new website - (still under construction) AND to do a little work ..................

The new Nordmarken Canoe UK site will be ready soon offering the english speaking world a excellent variety of outdoor living options ranging from canoeing to Hunting and from Fishing to survival and bushcraft training. Hosted in Arjang at the new and improved Canoe centre at Risviken!!

As always thank you to Preben and Gun for being my hosts - friends and second family!!

Last thought - a man without matches is a man without dinner! ]


65 MILES of gusset troubles

South west coastal path.

Well its been a busy year of hiking this year - first the downs, then the wall and now the coastal path, my old feet are clocking up the miles for sure!

Anyway cracking walk even the laziest bushcrafter could do as its through fairly civilized terrian.

For our leg of the Hike we did Poole to Lyme Regis but due to the ranges being in use had to go around Lulworth - this was a shame but in itself quite an adventure and probably one of the best days!

Well as national trails go this wasnt as exciting as the wall but great fun, great company and a great time so I'm as happy as can be! Throughly recommend this if oyur a beginner as the amount of campsites en route means even the expedition style bushcrafter could do it provided they are capable of putting one foot n front of the other!


Back to Basics.

As mentioned below the ideal of the bushcrafter circa 1980 was to be able to go native with only a blanket, a billy and a knife.

These days, maybe as a result of the times or maybe as a result of the experience learnt from recent hiking expeditions I find myself going back to basics much much more.

For example instead of a expensive custom knife I know prefer to carry and use a Mora Triflex. Experience has taught me this fantastic knife is equal to any task I put it to and thus pound for pound superior to even the best hand made blade - or looked at this way I could buy or carry 10 or more Triflex for the price of one custom job - enough knives to last a life time!!

Another example is my sack - ok I'll admit the sabre 45 with side pockets is probably the most versatile sack on the market today, while the PLCE Bergen is a bombproof tardis but pound for pound you can not beat the swedish army rucksack - 40lts of volume with an external frame this is a tardis in its own right - as a plus the sack can come off the frame and the frame be used on its own - a handy trick if you wanna carry that butchered venison or a large pile of wood back to camp! Tough as old boots these sacks cost £10 - a tenth of the price of a karrimor Sabre!

Lastly (for now) - cookware, a primus frying pan and a plate are great and can be used for many situations and this is my favourite for a base camp - but for hiking and general bushcraft you cant beat a swedish army mess kit. Cheap as chips, versatile and robust! These days I tend to carry just the pots and a gas stove and this is the crux as its the pots that win hands down - having a bail arm and a hook, usable lid (cup/frying pan) this cookware can be used in many ways.

Back to basics ....... well maybe its not a earth shattering revelation but then what would you expect?? Back to basics doesnt need to mean back to the blanket and billy can but I believe it should mean a move back to more cost effective, robust and multi-usage kit. Items with no thrills not need to be seen as unexciting either - for whats better spending your hard earned cash on expensive kit you can sit and admire or saving your pennies to spend on getting out there and using your kit to its fullest??

Remember the thrifty shrafters equation - COST DIVIDED BY USE EQAULS VALUE!!