Tag Archives: Bushcraft Gear

Ray Mears' Swag Camp

You can catch Ray in his swag bedroll in the Australian desert: on DaveJaVue channel tonight at 7pm if you have Sky TV. Here’s a couple of images of his desert camp from the show:

For more on swag camping, see our main post about “swag” camping here: “Me Ol’ Swagaroo”

Ray waking up in the Desert in a traditional Australian 'Swag Bag'

Ray waking up in the Desert in a traditional Australian 'Swag Bag'

A beautiful desert camp spot for Ray Mears

A beautiful desert camp spot for Ray Mears

Ray packing the Swag back in the 4 x 4.

Ray packing the Swag back in the 4 x 4.

We love swag-camping – if you want to get yourself a swag see our post on “Where to Buy a Swag in the UK” and also see our “Duluth Bedroll” post for a Canadian ‘swag’ option!

For more Ray Mears swag camping see this clip from his DVD from YouTube, showing 4×4 swag camping in places with a lot of biting insects, so a fully enclosed mozzie net features heavily in the swag he uses here – You’ll need to view full screen because there’s an awful lot of split-screen editing gone on in this one!

Inside a Campfire Tent…

Update: See our latest test of the Green Outdoor full size Campfire Tent.

Why does everyone want a Campfire Tent? Well I think this photo below shows why – you’re open to your surroundings, but have the warmth and life-force-enhancing glow of a campfire at the same time!

This is a set-up using a tarp (Wychwood Rogue Shelter) and canoe paddles, but it’s the same principle as any campfire tent or Baker Tent.

The View From Inside a Campfie Tent set-up....

The View From Inside a Campfie Tent set-up....

Sheltered but not Enclosed.... Campfire Tent Rig

Sheltered but not Enclosed.... Campfire Tent Rig

Flamin' Great! Surviving the Original Mountain Marathon…

By Regular Guest Writer, Richard Dunne…

"At the ill fated OMM (Original Mountain Marathon) in the Lakes last October, many people needed rescuing and others stayed in the fells overnight. The deep low pressure that hit was some sort of freak weather event.

The rain was sideways and frozen like sand in your face, the gusts of wind were lifting people off their feet and the flood waters that swelled so quickly were sweeping huge rocks and cars away. It really did turn the 2 day event into a nightmare and it was cancelled half way through day 1 as the storm raged. This video shows what it was really like that day:

However me and my buddy were properly equipped and well prepared and actually enjoyed the challenge of getting back to the starting point safely and unassisted. We had reached the day 1 finishing point on time, unaware of the cancelled status of the event and it was just a case of get yourself back.


While other people stood around, wrapped up in emergency space blankets peering from the safety of farm sheds, we stepped out into the storm with many others and walked back, following the road which was mainly underwater at the time, with regular brew stops and energy bars to keep us going. If we had to, we could have stayed out through the night but it wasn’t necessary.


A Fast Boiler When You Need It – MSR Pocket Rocket


One thing that really helped us that day was my great ‘MSR pocket rocket’. A simple item in your kit that is easy to use, folds up and boils up water really quickly. A real morale booster – when things are too extreme or serious for other methods. The flame is intense, adjustable and won’t blow out. This is a great back up item to have without overloading yourself. We used it too in the Brecon Beacons in January on a 12 mile walk. There’s nothing like a hot drink in -10 winds. For canoeing and wild camping, it’s perfect too. Fast and efficient if you’re in the mood for a no fuss warming up. Recommended. It was about £30 and the gas canisters are a few quid. My one doesn’t have an ignition but that’s where my striker comes in. Flaming Great, and just what you need when things go bad like they did that day.


See http://www.penrithsurvival.com/ for details.

Wye River – October 2008

We’ve just returned from our Autumn Season canoe trip on our favourite UK Southern River, the River Wye. A four day trip took us from Herefordshire, past Ross on Wye, through the Spectacular Symonds Yat limestone gorge through to Monmouth, making camp on the river bank along the way. We caught the last of the year’s fine weather, though it was just starting to get cold at night. A fine fire took the chill away as the evenings got longer and smouldered through most of the night, making outdoor ‘Tepee-Livin’ perfectly comfortable: as Ray Mears says – “if you’re roughing it, you’re not doing it right!”.

Gear on trial included a Old Town Discovery 158 (15’8″ canadian canoe), Wychwood Rogue Shelter, Australian Swag (bivvy) bag, Vango 2-man dome tent, Swedish Army “FireSteel” fire starter, Marmot Coffee Press steel mug, Beechwood beaver-tail canoe paddles, Brando LED head-light (clips onto hat) and Musto Fleece.

A Full Report will follow, but here’s some highlights:

A lunch stop…

1st night’s camp site…

Moonlit night…

Symods Yat Gorge Campsite

Marmot Mountain Coffee Press Mug

A flask/mug and plunger combo: keeps your coffee warm, even in the snow!


[Update]: This awesome mug doesnt seem to be on sale any more: these are 2 good options – Primus LiTech Coffee Press and GSI Coffee Press (see Comments links below for where to buy):

GSI Outdoors Cafetiere/Coffee Press Mug

PRIMUS LiTech Coffee Press kit

Update #2: Liquid Solutions which is supplied by the same people ‘Pacific Cornetta, Inc.’ that make the above Marmot one have this one called the “Frosty” coffee mug which looks pretty good:

They also have a taller model called the “Hector” Frosty Mug avalable on Amazon.com

Also some nice options for Tea leafers here too: http://shop.liquid-solutions.com/brewingmugs.aspx