As much as I’d love to be writing about how we’ve just touched down in Nepal, and how much I am looking forward to checking out ‘Freak Street’, the truth is, we’re not.
Instead, in preparation for our upcoming ‘Great Escape’ (as I type this, the film of the same name is on the screen before me, so it seemed fitting), we got wind that the outdoors and travel outfitters, Kathmandu (which was started in New Zealand in the late 1980’s) had a great sale on, so we saw it as an opportunity to shop up for the trip.
We’d decided from the outset we’d upgrade our packs for this trip. Sarah’s pack was now almost 15 years old, whilst for all our past adventures, I’d always borrowed so have never had a pack that was properly fitted.
We settled on the Interloper gridTECH 70L model (yes, we got the same but in different colours). It wasn’t the volume that sold us on this, as we wouldn’t envisage hauling this much around, but this did come with a water resistant membrane, weighed only 2.95kg’s and at under AU$300.00 (the original price was AU$649.98) seemed a bit of a steal.
We took advantage of the sale to purchase some thermal clothing for those colder climes and/or altitude, as well as some rain covers for our packs (one can never predict the tropics).
Our other big purchase? A Goosedown jacket each (normal retail of AU$699.98, on sale for $349.98). Our rationale was the need for us to carry an extremely warm garment, even though our first months of travel would be in tropical climates, versus the additional weight of a heavy coat.
These soft down coats seemed the ideal compromise. Weighing about 300g each, they can also be condensed into a small pocket, meaning they are also economical on our space!
So, what do we think of our purchases? Well the ultimate proof will be when they are finally tested when we get on the road, so we can provide a proper appraisal then.
Kathmandu are happy to properly fit the packs to the individual which is great, and this assistance can be given either at time of purchase, or as we have opted, just before we leave when our packs are fully loaded.