Spotlight - equipment views and reviews from the AK team
The Perfect Getaway Guide
23, May, 2018
Make sure you're not leaving things till the last minute, even for those long weekends!
A three-day weekend, a whole week off, a whole month off! Holidays come, holidays go, and all of a sudden they’re only 5 days away and you’ve got no idea where to go or what to pack!
No matter the duration, the location, or the company on your getaway, there’s one thing you can’t avoid: preparation.
We all do it and we all say we'll do it better next time. We’ve built up our Go Boxes so we can chuck them in the car at a moment’s notice, but it always feels like there’s something we leave to the last minute…
We can’t promise that we’ll get our holidays all sorted weeks in advance, but we can make a plan of action for when we do leave things until the last minute. Here are a few pointers to set you on your way in the days before your holiday.
#1 Check assets
Perhaps you are proper gnarly and go out in all weather, but some poor weather over the last year may have meant that your kit has been locked away longer than normal. Maybe you haven't been camping since you left uni 20 years ago? It’s time to check over all your adventure holiday assets to make sure nothing’s lacking.
Check your Go Box
Check that your Go Box has been restocked since your last adventure… Did you leave your Ti camping mug on the draining board? Have you restocked on bin bags? Go check, quick!
No floppy flys, or flying tents
Are your pegs where they are meant to be? You can do it, but it's not really that cool to pitch a geodesic without them.
Review your friends
Real friends wouldn't keep gear you lent them any longer than absolutely necessary. They shouldn't put this stress on you, so pester Dave for that cooking pan set he borrowed last August.
Leave 80's outdoor fashion in the 80's
You might think it's retro classic, but unless you're confident that it's coming back it doesn't do any of us any favours, things have moved on unless you've got an old SnapT.
No pump assisted beds on public campsites
Less pumping more self-inflating, so make sure your sleeping mat is up to the job. Lilo's are most definitely for the pool only.
Fill up on gas
Check that you have gas cannisters, and check that those cannisters have gas in them - you'll be needing that first morning cuppa.
#2 Hatch a plan
The fun bit! Plan what you’re doing during your holiday, do you research, and work out if you need any new kit.
We're not saying every detail (part of an adventure is in the not knowing) but you need to know what to pack and it will alleviate the stress of trying to think of things while you’re away.
Plan to not plan
Keep an open mind and see what happens.
Go somewhere new
If you haven’t already booked then start your holiday by going in totally the opposite direction to where you usually go.
It means you've done something proper. If it's not on your clothes, bike or in your car by the time you return then you are a failure.
Do something new
Take on the challenge of doing at least one thing that you've never tried before. Think what you want to do, not what kit you have.
Never blank out
There is a wealth of inspiration out there for imaginative ideas of what to do, so spend a little time researching some options and creating a list.
#3 Action it
Things to do before you go. You've checked your kit, planned what you might be getting up to. Now's the time to tie up urgent loose ends.
New or replacement kit
If we've got it we should be able to get it to you next day (in the UK) if you order by 2pm, depending on what it is, best to contact if you're unsure. But you may also need to organise a trip to the shops, so get a list together of all the bits you need.
Clear the decks
Return any library books and pay bills.
Clear the fridge
If you can't finish it, then pass that smelly cheese onto your neighbour. We will generously take any unwanted biscuits or cake off your hands.
Always good to have something up your sleeves just in case the weather’s being stubborn. Check for colouring materials, order any handy books, and dig out that pack of cards you know is around somewhere.
If you can't hold it in then do it now while you still have time to calm down and clear your head.
Not quite the same as planning things - this is the time to ensure everyone is clear about what people want to get out of this holiday and set some ground rules.
Pack the day before you go
A hard one to hit, but it wouldn't be right to not at least consider it.
Clean the house (not essential)
Some people seem to want to clean their house before going away. There's nothing worse than trying to do it whilst everyone’s loaded into the car, do it now if you must.
No one likes a sourpuss on holiday. Leave your work stresses at the desk.
A chance to bond
No arguing, period.
Do not let the weather ruin the holiday
Take control, positive thinking will lead to positive weather, even if it is pouring with rain.
#5 Off you go
Today’s the day! There's nothing left to do other than ease into your holiday break. Right?
Leave work on time.
Put on a fresh Alpkit T-shirt.
Pack up the car.
Realise it doesn't fit and repack .
Drive off - then realise your road tax is going to expire in 2 days, quickly buy car insurance (thank goodness for the internet!)
Remember that it is all for fun and don't take it too seriously on your holidays.
Have a fantastic time!
Of course if you need advice through the week up to your holiday getaway then our customer service team are always at hand to help calm you down should the plan not be working, they are not on holiday but still cheery.
Candy CanesRound wire, aluminium, hook tent peg£8.49
Lampray196 lumen camping lantern and charging station for illuminating your camp life, with USB power output to recharge mobile phones.£39.99
Mountain Ghost 2002 season Primaloft Silver synthetic sleeping bag, ideal for 2 season self-supported trips£89.99
DirtbagThe fattest baddest self-inflating mat for all those dirtbag moments in your life, weighing just 900 g it is comfort you can carry£54.99
Skyehigh 700 HydrophobicIdeal for big trips further afield as well as microadventures close to home. -8˚C limit 3 – 4 season sleeping bag weighing 1140 g with Nikwax Hydrophobic duck down£179.99
KoroA high powered titanium camping stove weighing just 124 g for mountaineering in subzero conditions. Compact design and made from titanium to save weight£44.99
LandarSturdy 805 g basecamp gas stove with built-in Piezo igniter for remote camp kitchens capable of cooking up a storm£64.99
BananagramsA bananary game of scrabble you can play on your tent floor£15.00
Pass the PigsA classic game for generations and probably the best dice game ever!£10.00