Blog Archives

An ‘L’ of a way with grid references

Nav voucher

Despite the big changes in approaches to teaching navigation over the last decade or so, grid references will need to be introduced and used at some point to allow progression. As with a lot of the skills required for using

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Posted in Mountain Training, Navigation, Trips

The pitfalls of left and right in navigation and route description

Sedimentary rocks

We’ve all had the experience of mixing up left and right, often when trying to explain a route to a driver when we’re feeling under pressure ourselves. Confusing left and right may have been a contributing factor to the rout

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Posted in Hill Running, Mountain Training, Navigation, Orienteering

Thanks to Celox Training Academy for ‘Principles of Haemorrhage Control’ CPD course

In the last decade, a number of organizations and campaigns (e.g. Stop the Bleed, citizenAID) have begun to promote the need to prevent people bleeding to death from severe external injuries that could be treated by first-aiders. Keeping up with

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Posted in Mountain Training, Outdoor first-aid

‘Footwear systems’ for the hills

Shoe and improvised gaiter

One important piece of advice I was given by my old friend Dr Andy McMullen (Botanaeco) when I started doing a lot of outdoor work, both leadership and scientific fieldwork, in 2014 was to LOOK AFTER MY FEET! Part of

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Posted in Hill Running, Mountain Training, Orienteering, Scotland, Uncategorized

Beinn a’ Ghlo: back to the hills

Carn nan Gobhar

While it was possible to return to the Scottish hills for paid work a few days earlier, the 3rd of July saw the lifting of the five-mile travel restriction in Scotland. Although this gave me a lot of scope in

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Posted in Mountain Training, Mountains, Pathwork, Scotland

Keeping hill fit close to home

Although things have changed slightly in Scotland, with unlimited outdoor exercise, I’ve still been relying on a lot of home-based exercise to try to keep myself fit for getting back into the hills. I am lucky that there are small

Posted in Edinburgh, Hill Running, Mountain Training, Orienteering, Scotland, Woodlands

Book review: Pocket First Aid and Wilderness Medicine (3rd edition)

Pocket First Aid and Wilderness Medicine. Third Edition. 2017. By Drs Jim Duff and Ross Anderson. Cicerone. 252 pp. Softback and eBook. £11.95 RRP. ISBN 9781852849139 Disclosure: This review is based upon a sample copy of the printed book sent

Posted in Book reviews, Books, Mountain Training, Outdoor first-aid

Book review: Navigation: Techniques and skills for walkers

Navigation: Techniques and skills for walkers. Second Edition. 2019 By Pete Hawkins. Cicerone Press 152 pp. RRP £9.95 (ISBN 9781852848910) Disclosure: This review is based upon a sample copy of the printed sent to Al McGowan, at his request, by

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Posted in Book reviews, Books, Mountain Training, Navigation

Contributing to ‘Exploring the Environment’ MTA/AMI workshop, Stirling, April 20th 1000-1600

With the help of a number of other MTA and AMI members, I’ll be helping out at a CPD workshop for outdoor leaders who are members of the two Associations in the Stirling and Bridge of Allan area. I’ll be

Posted in Geodiversity, Mountain Training, Scotland, Woodlands

An Old Ne’er Day Review of 2018 and looking forward to 2019

The year has turned, by whichever of a selection of old European calendars you want to use, and the light begins to come back to the higher latitudes. In Scotland, today is the first day of the New Year. However,

Posted in Geological Walks, Mountain Training, Navigation, Scotland, Trips
Al is a Hill and Moorland Leader and has also completed the Expedition Skills module
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