Blog Archives

‘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

Hills of Hame: ready to go outdoors if you are

Hills of Hame works across Scotland on a range of activities and skills but fundamentally the company exists to help people, either as individuals or groups, move towards being able to undertake activities they would like to do. Al’s ideal

Posted in Uncategorized

Hills of Hame is now ‘Good to Go’ after July 15th

Everyone in the outdoor community is having to adapt to changes and think about how deliver training and experiences under new constraints. Today I drew up a Covid-19 plan and worked through the Visit Scotland ‘Good to Go!’ accreditation scheme.

Posted in Edinburgh, Geological Walks, Geological Walks (urban), Pentlands, Scotland, Uncategorized

A lost soundscape revisited this morning

Shadow the dog and I were out to the west of Liberton Brae this morning. As we threaded our way out through the converted farm building of Liberton Tower Mains and stopped to watch a hovering kestrel, the lack of

Posted in Scotland, Trips, Uncategorized

Finishing off at Diabeg, summer 1996

One of the long, long jobs we did in Torridon was the path between Upper Diagbeg and Craig. This route continues on to Redpoint along the road from Gairloch but we only worked on the path as far as the

Posted in Uncategorized

Out of the oven and into the fire: renovating Dutch oven for outdoor cooking

I spent around 5 years in the US in my late 20s and early 30s and did accrete a lot of books from Powells, some homeware and other assorted kit that was shipped back to Cambridge, England in 2003. One

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Posted in Campcraft, Uncategorized

Reading and podcasts 

Originally posted on Walking Talking:
Temple of Muses, near Dryburgh Abbey Here, I steer clear of rants. I have been known to rant about many things. It is why that very often I steer clear of the news. As I…

Posted in Uncategorized

Return to Skye, 20 years on

May is usually a dry spell on the western seaboard of Scotland. I had agreed to go up to help out with a palaeontological prospecting expedition with people from the University of Edinburgh, National Museum of Scotland aided by Dugie

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Posted in Mountain Training, Scotland, Trips, Uncategorized

Pop-up tents – a useful tool for teaching campcraft admin to novice groups?

‘Pop-up tent’ conjures a variety of images, most of them negative. Abandoned tents in seas of mud bought as part of a ‘festival package’. Discarded in a roadside campsite. Single sheet, lacking a porch and leaky. Yet, as an outdoor

Posted in Uncategorized

Harlaw Reservoir wanderings

Harlaw is part of a network of reservoirs that were built in the 19th century to supply the city with clean, fresh water. The network now extends deep into the Scottish Borders around Talla but the Pentland Hills contain numerous

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Posted in Geodiversity, Geological Walks (low-level), Pentlands, Scotland, Uncategorized
Al is a Hill and Moorland Leader and has also completed the Expedition Skills module
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Previously on Hills of Hame