News

  • What Outdoor Activities Can I Do With The Kids This Easter?

    Posted on March 27, 2015 by Snugpak

    Easter-Holidays

    Egg-citing! The Easter Holidays are nearly here (how fast is this year going?). One thing we hear a lot of these days is parents saying they'd love to get their kids away from the computer games and outside more. Studies have also show that the more active kids are outdoors, the better they sleep and the better they perform at school! So we're just as passionate about getting kids outdoors as you are. We've put together some ideas on what you can do this Easter...

    Affordable and easy things to do:
    If you have really young children then chocolate is always a winner. The Woodland Trust has come up with some great Easter egg hunt ideas that you can prepare yourself. If you don't fancy the hyperactive sugar rush that chocolate can create, then spend some time with the kids decorating hard-boiled eggs or round stones beforehand. Why not turn it into a social event with friends and family?http://www.naturedetectives.org.uk/packs/easter.htm

    Get creative in the garden:
    All you need is flour, a sieve, home-made stencils and away you go! Why not use the garden to teach your children about wildlife – there are lots of ways to make bird feeders and you can spend the rest of the Easter holidays watching the birds and measuring how much they have eaten.

    The garden is also great for cooking and baking (we're thinking mud pies, crushed leaf milkshakes and goo potions all sprinkled with a touch of grass).

    Further afield:
    Is there any activity that makes you feel more free than riding a bike? This is a great free activity that kids love. If you're child doesn't know how to cycle, then this holiday is the perfect time for them to learn. There is lots of help online for teaching children how to ride a bike and also mapping out routes. Try the VisitEngland, VisitScotland or VisitWales for great countryside ideas.

    There is a great website called http://www.dayoutwiththekids.co.uk which you can type your town and postcode into and it brings up all the local places, events and activities available to you. Why not head to your local farm and feed the animals, walk around your local museum gardens or try a woodland walk (which will be stunning at this time of year).

    Have you tried Geocaching yet? This is a fantastically fun activity to with kids of all ages. It's a worldwide activity in which participants hit the great outdoors and use a GPS receiver to find and hide 'cache' containers. It's an activity that can be enjoyed by all, no matter what your age or fitness level is and is great to do as a family, with friends, for fitness or a bit of fun. Geocaching also has an avid following in the UK, so you'll instantly become part of a friendly community.

    Camping:
    Are you heading on a family holiday camping this Easter? Last year we prepared a blog on activities to keep your kids entertained while camping. Have a look here – we're always looking for more ideas and advice from parents, so please feel free to add you own tips. (http://www.snugpak.com/outdoor/snugpak/news/easter-camping-tips/).

    We have the perfect sleeping bag range to ensure your little ones have the best night sleep possible when camping. http://www.snugpak.com/outdoor/sleeping-bags/

    Whatever you decide to do, let us know. Send in your family snaps for our community page!


    Posted in How Tos, News

  • Snugpak nominates the Love Hill Mangrove Restoration, Bahamas

    Posted on March 10, 2015 by Snugpak

    In our last blog we introduced the European outdoor Conservation Association (EOCA) and the global work they do to conserve wild places and ecosystems for future generations. We at Snugpak are proud to be a member of such an organisation that has, so far, delivered 64 projects in 36 different countries having raised 1.54m Euros from it's members.

    The projects have been wide ranging, so although the members come from Europe, the projects are not simply limited to the continent. Each campaign requires a member to nominate it and then the members vote on it. This means that the members have a democratic say in what projects are funded and, so far, successful projects have been delivered in places such as the Eastern Tyrol and Scotland (repairing trails), projected the brown bear in Spain, saved an ancient forest in Sweden from logging and cleaned a mountain in Kyrgyzstan - amazing.

    As a member, Snugpak has nominated the project to restore the stunning mangroves at Love Hill, Andros in the Bahamas.

    Mangrove forests are groups of tress and shrubs that live in a coastal intertidal zone. There are around 80 different species of mangrove tress in tropical and sub-tropical regions throughout the world. They provide a critical resource for a number of reasons as follows:

    Mangroves provide a physical habitat and nursery grounds for a wide variety of marine organisms (the intricate root system protects fish and other organisms from predators)

    They stabilise the coastline by reducing the erosion from storms, tides and currents. Water quality and clarity is provided by mangroves as they filter run off and trap sediment and debris from the uplands. Unfortunately, the mangroves in Andros have been affected by the installation of 3 roads over 50 years ago. Although culverts were installed to maintain water flow these are now broken or clogged and, where no culverts were installed, the mangroves are only nourished during high tides when the water floods the roads. As a result, the mangroves have degraded. Pine trees have invaded, the mangroves are clogged with marine litter and they smell of methane.

    This issue has a significant knock on effect to the Andros Barrier Reef which is the third longest barrier reef in the world. The damage to the mangrove has reduced the habitats for fish, birds, turtles, sea mammals and invertebrates, which are all vital for cleaning algae which settles on the Andros Barrier Reef.

    The project Snugpak is nominating will restore 96 hectares of mangrove by cleaning out, repairing and installing culverts on all 3 roads and by replacing the invasive pine trees with native species. By restoring the mangrove habitat, the fish populations in the open ocean will benefit and the health of the barrier reef will also be improved. Love Hill, Andros will be restored as an attractive area to explore, bird watch, kayak, swim and walk in.

    So please, we ask for your support for this amazingly valuable campaign and hope our fellow EOCA members vote for this project. Vote via the European Outdoor Conservation website http://www.outdoorconservation.eu/project-voteng-category.cfm?catid=5/>

    To discuss further join us @Snugpak and https://www.facebook.com/snugpak

    coral reef 4Sierra Exif JPEGBlocked water flowBroken culvertcoral reef 1

    Posted in News

  • Snugpak sponsors the Royal Navy's Skeleton Bobsleigh Team

    Posted on March 10, 2015 by Snugpak

    We're really pleased to announce that we're sponsoring the Royal Navy's Skeleton Bobsleigh Team for the second year running - both the men and women.

    For those that haven't come across it before, there is quite a bit of history around it but the summary is that "toboggans" used in Alpine countries at the end of the 19th Century were inspired by Canadian/Indian sleds used for transport.

    In 1892, an Englishman, Mr. Child, surprised his sports friends with a new sled made mostly from metal. Some speculate that since the sled looked like a skeleton, it ended up being called a skeleton - and that's where the name originates from.

    So who are the people behind the teams? The men's team comprises Sid Lawrence (coach), Andy Sawyer (coach), Robert PJ Pritchard (captain), Gregg Powell, Ed Maddy, Josh Spibey, Pete McDUff, Andy Bartlett and James Green. The ladies include Lliana Veneti, Bianca Di Resta, Melanie Hasaim, Nicole Gardner, Sally Hayes, Sarah Burns and Georgie Cohen (a civilian training with the Navy).

    The people above are used to travelling at incredible speeds of 80mph on ice and Lliana has won 12 trophies since joining the team in 2009. Making a big impression, she was made captain in 2011.

    All of the ladies team are in their 20's and all of them view "sliding" (as they call it) as fun(!) and most of them are new to the team. Melaine said: "The sponsorship you provide the Royal Navy skeleton team has been the most essential as it is your kit that keeps us warm on those below minus degree days at the top of the track and for this, we thank you for it".

    For the men, Anthony Sawyer, the coach, is proud to help "new breed of brave Skeleton Pilots representing Her Majesty's Royal Navy!" and the captain, Robert PJ Pritchard-Jones "First tried skeleton in 2006 and was hooked ever since!"

    And what about Georgie (the civilian) who adopted skeleton because it seemed like a "safer" option. Safer than what?!

    We're sure our kit will keep the teams warm wherever they are. We'll be following their progress over the course of the next few months.

    Bobsleigh


    Posted in News

  • 12x12 Mountain Challenge

    Posted on March 2, 2015 by Snugpak

    Many people do many crazy things to raise money for charity. So, a group of Yorkshire businessmen are no exception to this rule, as they challenge themselves to scale 12 UK & Ireland mountains in 12 months to raise money for the Yorkshire Air Ambulance. This included Snugpak’s very own marketing manager Stewart Anderson (kitted out in the best gear obviously).

    First up in January was Skiddaw in the Lake District - the 4th highest peak in England -
    in temperatures of minus 10 degrees centigrade and a narrow icy ridge between them and the objective. The team battled the elements to climb, crawl and hang on for dear life to some questionable parts of the route.

    Screen Shot 2015-03-02 at 14.55.58

    Said Rob Lewis:

    “Last year our daughter was airlifted to hospital by The Yorkshire Air Ambulance and so we will eternally owe them a debt of gratitude. So when Steve approached us and asked us if we'd participate and support the cause, of course we jumped at the chance. Life is both a fleeting and fragile thing and so whenever the opportunity arises to help others, we should all do our bit'.”

    Said Stewart:

    “Working for Snugpak, the great outdoors is obviously something I’m passionate about. Even so, this was a major challenge for me. It was treacherous! Luckily my Snugpak gear kept me warm and safe but that doesn’t make the sheer drop and the heights any easier!”

    There were well deserved celebrations when the team achieved the first objective and now its nearly time for the next target of Cross Fell, the highest point of the Pennines, on 28th February. As you can see from the image it looks nice and warm up there!

    12x12mountain
    Group photo of everyone who took part. From left: Andrew Snape, Rob lewis, Steven Burles, Lee Bilbrough, Alan Turner, Scott Dimbleby, Stewart Anderson, Karl Bradford.

    Next month's climb is Cross Fell, again in the Lake District and momentum is gathering pace for the next one. Already the numbers in the Society ranks have risen from 8 to 10 and no doubt more and more people will be coming on board as the year goes on.

    You can follow the exploits of the Walk Society on their Facebook page 12 x 12 Mountain Challenge

    To donate to this worthy cause visit www.justgiving.com/teams/12x12 . Just a small donation goes a long way to preserving this valuable life-saving service.


    Posted in News and was tagged with 12x12mountainchallenge, mountain, lake district, pennines, Yorkshire, charity

  • The Value of The European Outdoor Conservation Association (EOCA)‏- Protecting The Great Outdoors

    Posted on February 20, 2015 by Snugpak

    People may not have heard of the European Outdoor Conservation Association, or EOCA. However, this organisation performs a valuable service "contributing to the conservation of wild places and ecosystems for future generations."

    What the EOCA do is to raise money to promote care and respect for wild places. There are over 120 members of this not for profit organisation and the membership stretches from Norway to Spain and from the UK to the Czech Republic. EOCA directly funds projects with conservation bodies that have been nominated and voted on by the association members . The funds can be for up to 30,000 Euros per project and those that have been, and will be funded, are as wide ranging as the members (from giant multi-nationals to small enterprises). Further, the locations are not restricted to the European boundaries and projects have been performed in Nepal and Kyrgyzstan.

    Membership is open to any company operating within the outdoor industry and we, at Snugpak, are very proud to be members of EOCA. 100% of the membership fees go directly to the conservation project that have been nominated by and voted for by the members. This democratic process should ensure that the most deserving projects get the most support. Excitingly, Snugpak, as members, can nominate up to 3 projects each year for voting on by the members.

    Over the last 8 years EOCA has funded 64 projects in 36 different countries which amounts to 1.54m Euros invested in our planet's future. Some fantastic projects have been implemented during this time amongst which elephants trails have been created in India, the red-footed falcon has been protected in Bulgaria and Atlantic rain forest was planted in Brazil. Not bad for the first 8 years, imagine what they can do in 20 years!


    Posted in News and was tagged with conservation

  • Get Outdoors this year

    Posted on January 22, 2015 by Snugpak

    Studies have shown that 20 minutes a day activity will, on average, extend your life. Activity takes all forms and you don't need to go to the gym to do it. A better option for most people is to simply get outdoors and get some fresh air in their lungs.

    Outdoor activity can take many forms and can be as exciting and interesting as you want it to be. You can also grade the activity by ability. Not everyone is capable of a 5 mile walk up a steep hill so people new to outdoor activity might want to start with a leisurely 20 or 30 minute stroll around the local park. Once this activity becomes easier then it can be upgraded to higher ability walks in the locality and extending into the countryside. If you have children, or are simply interested in points of interest as you walk through an area, then it is a good idea to sign up to a geocaching app if you have a GPS enabled mobile device. Geocaching apps can provide information about a specific place as you arrive at it or, for instance, you can undertake a treasure hunt where you navigate to a specific geocache (container) that's hidden at that location. It's great for making walks more interesting!

    As you progress you might want to take up jogging, or running, increase the level of difficulty of the walks progressively or find other outdoor pursuits which you might not have considered previously. For example, rock climbing, mountain biking or orienteering to name but a few. The options outdoors are endless and can always be adopted based on your level of ability. Whatever you decide to do just make sure you are correctly attired and plan the activity before embarking.

    As many of our fans and followers are keen outdoor goers, we're always looking for tips, advice and photos of things you've done and seen that can be recommended to those just started to explore the great outdoors. Have a look at our new community site to share your experiences, and to learn from those who know how. Enjoy!


    Posted in News and was tagged with outdoors, new year, excersise, health, climbing, mountain biking, orienteering, outdoor pursuits

  • How Do I Prepare For Winter Camping?

    Posted on January 22, 2015 by Snugpak

    Winter ventures can provide some of the most amazing journeys, with fantastic views, clear skylines and the wonderful sound of snow and ice crunching under your feet. However, winter travel, and camping, whilst great fun, can also be life threatening. The critical issue for anyone moving outside in the winter months, is to plan your route carefully, ensure you have the correct equipment for the environment, terrain and weather, and always ensure you have enough food and water, including hot drinks.

    In terms of pre-venture planning, it covers a lot of areas:

    • What is your objective?
    • What environment are you travelling into?
    • What will the terrain be like?
    • How high are you going to travel?
    • Have you anticipated the weather?
    • How many are in your group and what is their ability?

    All of these factors will determine the type of route you want to take, as well as the length of time you want to spend outdoors. Remember that in the winter months, days are getting longer after the Solstice in December, but days are still relatively short, and temperatures can drop considerably when you are in the hills, and it is a lot colder, even if you are only a few hundred metres above sea level. Take the time to look at your planned route before you leave, either using a published Ordnance Survey map sheet, or online digital mapping.

    Once the trip has been sufficiently planned, attention needs to be turned to the correct equipment. Firstly, insulation strategy is a must. Correct thermal regulation needs to be managed, so appropriate levels of insulation will be required throughout the day. Adopting a correct layering principle to your clothes, starting with clean and dry skin, is essential. Next a lightweight base layer will pull moisture away from your skin, then an fleece or other warm later can be added if you get too cold. The main part of your clothing is formed from your insulation layer, such as the Softie ML6, which creates the main insulation that traps warm air. Finally, a good waterproof jacket and trousers will be required. For trousers, over the top of a base layer, lightweight heat soft-shell or insulation layers are recommended, with a pair of waterproof over-trousers if required.

    For your head, appropriate insulation is needed, or even a balaclava in more extreme conditions. Good quality gloves or mittens retain heat for the hands Again, the layering technique can be used here, with thin base layer fleece gloves being worn next to the skin and mittens or bigger gloves over the top. Always carry spares of gloves and hats, especially if they are not waterproof.

    Footwear can make or break any venture, and suitable walking or mountain boots, preferably B1 or B2 rated will be required, especially if you are using crampons. Make sure your boots feet over correctly fitting socks, and if necessary use a liner sock as well as a thicker insulating sock.

    Snow and Ice remain critical factors, either when deliberately planning to walk along well defined routes and paths or moving onto more adventurous and remote environments. Well established routes can become impassable due to a build up of snow and making progress, either forward on in retreat can lead to problems if there is considerable ice under foot. Any venture where there is a risk of snow and ice, the use of a walking ice axe and crampons are essential; do not leave home without them.

    Sufficient food, high in carbohydrates, and extra clothing layers and will need to be carried, as well as additional safety equipment such as a first aid kit, and possibly ropes, so choose the correct pack for the job. A suitable pack of around 25-30L is sufficient for most single days, with larger expedition packs required for overnight camps and expeditions. For any excursion in winter climates, you are going to be carrying more equipment than usual, so make sure you are used to carrying larger packs, and ensure all your equipment is packed efficiently for the type of movement you are planning.

    You will need to take some form of shelter with you, either in the form of a bothy bag, ranging in size from 2-4 people, up to larger ones for groups. They can be absolute lifesavers if you need to remain static for any period of time, such as during food breaks, or if you need to add/change clothing layers. Alternatively, you can use tents specifically constructed for winter use.

    Tents can be lightweight and robust for the planned weather conditions and once inside the tent, the right sleeping bag and insulation mat is a must and you should refer to the guidelines of what makes the best sleeping bag for the temperatures you'll be facing. You insulation mat needs to protect you from heat loss into the ground, and in extreme cases, you may need more than one!

    Once you have planned your objective and route, the right food and cooking utensils need to be carried. Generally, a stove could be taken, or alternatively chemical heat packs are a good alternative, but lack the ability to make hot water! A good quality flask for storing hot drinks is also essential - don't forget the hot chocolate and make sure you stay hydrated - you may not notice it, but you will still need the same amount of water, even though it is colder. Never eat snow or ice directly, as this rapidly cools you from the inside and can cause life-threatening hypothermia.

    Carry enough food to cover your expected energy consumption per day, even for low level walks you could consume over 5,000 calories per person, per day and carry a little in reserve; eat little and often to maintain energy levels.

    There is a lot to plan for whenever heading out into the hills over winter, but the better prepared you are the more enjoyable your trip will be! Don't forget your camera, and see if you can photograph that elusive cloud angel from the summit!

    Are you a winter adventurist? Send us your tips and advice. And we're always looking for pictures! Don't forget to send them to us @Snugpak and on Facebook.


    Posted in News and was tagged with shelters, thermal insulation, winter camping

  • #SnugpakWinterChallenge - There's still time to take part

    Posted on December 12, 2014 by Snugpak

    All month Snugpak have been running the #SnugpakWinterChallenge

    It's easy to enter... all you need to do is follow us on Twitter or Like us on Facebook and send us a selfie each day. The selfie will need to be based on a challenge we set every day via our social networks. If your selfie meets the challenge you will have a chance to win a fantastic Snugpak product!

    On Christmas Eve, just before Santa arrives, we will be awarding a 1st, 2nd and 3rd prize for the best overall entries! So get creative and keep your eye out for our Snugpak Winter Daily Challenge! And don't forget to use #snugpakwinterchallenge on your entries.

    Good luck!

    Here some examples of the entries so far to help you get going.



    Posted in Promos

  • Layering: How to dress for winter outdoor activities and expeditions

    Posted on November 12, 2014 by Snugpak

    Most people know that layering your clothes keeps you warm in most adverse conditions but how does it work and what's the best strategy?

    Simply put, layering your clothes in the right way can create a microclimate that surrounds your body and can protect you from rain and varying temperatures. We usually say three layers is the right strategy - not too many to take off if warm and not to bulky either. These include a base layer, middle layer and outer layer.

    Base layer:
    The most important layer is the innermost layer, or base layer. The inner-most layer is key because it's in direct contact with your skin. Base layers should transport moisture away from the skin and disperse it to the air or outer layers where it can evaporate. Water is a good heat conductor and damp garments draw precious heat away from your body. The base layer should be snug but not constrict your movement.

    Base layers are available in light, medium, and heavy weights. Light layers suit aerobic activity where sweat dispersal is paramount. Mid weight provides moisture control and insulation for stop-and-go activities. Heavy layers are best in very cold conditions, or when you're relatively inactive.

    Middle layer:
    The next layer is the middle layer. The mid-layer provides insulation and continues the transportation of moisture from the inner layer. This layer must be capable of retaining the warmth generated by your body but also have features such as pit zippers and full-length front zippers allowing venting. This layer should also fit well but not restrain movement.

    Outer layer:
    The third layer, or outer layer, is there to protect you and your mid layers from the elements and should allow air to circulate and excess moisture to escape. The selection of the outer layer will depend on conditions. In dry conditions, then a breathable uncoated layer is fine. In wet conditions then a waterproof, breathable rain jacket should be worn.


    Posted in News and was tagged with layering, temperature control, Waterproof

  • Snugpak Makes The World's Largest Sleeping Bag

    Posted on November 11, 2014 by Snugpak

    We have collaborated with Centre Point UK and Puffa to create the World’s largest sleeping bag as part of Centre Point’s national Sleep Out event on November 6 to help raise awareness and funds for the millions of young homeless people.

    It’s been no mean feat but the end result is amazing. Check out how the World’s largest sleeping bag was made with the pictures and videos below:

    We would also like to send out a big thank you to Bradford Bulls for being so welcoming. They even helped us with some of the photography!


    Posted in News and was tagged with Sleeping bag, sleeping, sleep

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