Easy outdoor cooking with Biolite Stoves

Biolite StoveWe all know that preparing food and heating drinks in the outdoors isn’t always the easiest thing either by having to carry around heavy cooking equipment like gas canisters or searching for the right biomass materials to start a fire with, plus after a long day hiking you just want to relax and eat.  Here at Webtogs we have the innovative Biolite Stoves which are designed to not only make cooking meals and drinks really easy but lighter to carry and have a few other handy features too.

The Biolite Camp Stove cooking system is comparatively lightweight and only requires a small amount of renewable biomass such as sticks and twigs to be effective as each unit is built with an internal thermoelectric generator which powers a heat regulating fan for greater efficiency.  There are optional attachments for the Biolite such as the Grille Cook Attachment system which provides a greater surface area to cook food on and there is also a Biolite Kettle Pot that perfectly fits the unit so you can make hot drinks, boil water or heat up soup with very little hassle.  On average it takes four and a half minutes to boil a litre of water using 46 grams of wood.

 

Unlike standard camping cooking equipment the Biolite Stoves also create electricity from their thermoelectric generators which is connectedBiolite-Kettle-Pot-for-Cooking-System to a USB port so is able to charge most electronic devices that are compatible.  It will approximately take twenty minutes to charge an iPhone 4S for 60 minutes of talking time for example so in an emergency you will have enough power for your devices if required.  So if you want an easy way to prepare food and drink on your latest adventure these Biolite Stoves and Biolite accessories available online now at Webtogs are perfect.

Read More

Jack Wolfskin, Salomon and more New Brands at Webtogs


We always aim to bring you the best outdoor gear from all the best manufacturers and brands and at the best prices which is why recently here at Webtogs a number of well-known and diverse names have been added to our roster.  It’s always exciting to have the privilege of being approved for stocking products of brands new to us; even more so when we have a number of different types in one go.

 

Jack Wolfskin

Jack Wolfskin are a name well known amongst experienced outdoor enthusiasts having over three decades worth of experience in making high quality outdoor clothing such as jackets, tops, pants, headwear and shorts; plus footwear, rucksacks and handy accessories like water bottles, walking socks and more.  The extensive range of Jack Wolfskin outdoor gear covers every kind of activity from a simple short walk to braving a mountain trail as their aim has always been to get everyone out and exploring the wilderness whatever their ability or favoured type trail by being as comfortable as possible and you can find their premium products with us at Webtogs.

Also now at Webtogs are the bestselling footwear brand Salomon who since 1947 have specialised in durable technical hiking boots, shoes and sandals for hikers, climbers, trail runners and everyone who likes to take a walk outside.  The Salomon designs are stylish fairly distinct as shown in their popular 4D GTX boots collection and the entire range features the pinnacle of footwear technology such as Vibram outsoles, OrthoLite footbeds and GORE-TEX lining and constructions so that they can take on the terrain and climate conditions so you stay comfortable and supported.

We’ve also acquired brands that produce accessories and equipment that make adventures in the wilderness much easier such as Pure Hydration and Water To Go who produce canteens and water bottles designed to allow you to drink more safely plus BioLite who make compact and highly effective stoves that merely require small amounts of biomass to ignite a contained fire that will cook and charge electronic devices.  Other brands include Extremities with their range of gloves, socks and headwear that work to keep your appendages and head warm and dry without losing any flexibility at all and Buff who have quite simply created the most versatile range of garments around that can be used as everything from a balaclava, to a neck scarf and even a wrist band.

So please take a look at the great new brands and products we have for even more options for making any journey into the outdoors much more comfortable and enjoyable so you can focus on the trail ahead.

Read More

Brasher and Berghaus to “Tie the Knot” under Berghaus Name

Some surprising news reached us last week; Brasher, one of Britain’s most loved footwear brands, is to ‘join together’ with fellow UK Brand, Berghaus. The result of this will be that the Brasher brand will effectively cease to exist, and selected Brasher boots will be sold under the Berghaus name from Spring/Summer 2015 onwards.

Brasher boots will be sold under the Berghaus name from Spring/Summer 2015
Brasher boots will be sold under the Berghaus name from Spring/Summer 2015

(more…)

Read More

Webtogs Road-Trip to the Brit-Brand Trio & Marmot!

Aptly-named snack of the week. Great value too.
Aptly-named snack of the week

I should probably start out by explaining that when I say ‘Brit brand trio’, I’m referring to Rab, Mountain Equipment and Montane. These three brands are the standard-bearers for the UK outdoor industry, and between them they account for over half of the products ranged on Webtogs.co.uk at any given time. It was these brands, along with another of our suppliers; US brand Marmot, that Webtogs MD Keith and I set out to visit last Sunday on a 5-day buying road-trip. I can report that it was epic thanks to the exciting new products on show… and the added bonus of getting to take the bike out on some awesome trails in the Lakes (Altura Trail, Whinlatter & The North Face Trail, Grizedale) and Peak District!

(more…)

Read More

Festive Montane Test! Further Faster Neo and Alpha Guide Jackets

As I posted before Christmas, I was lucky enough to get my hands on a pair of Montane test garments to try out over the festive break – the Montane Further Faster Neo Jacket (shell) and Alpha Gide Jacket (insulator). Sadly they have now been dispatched back to Montane HQ (wish I could have kept them), and I am left to report my thoughts and findings.

Dartmoor - the perfect place for a Montane test!
Dartmoor – the perfect place for a Montane test!

As always seems to be the case over Christmas, I was not able to be quite as active as I’d have liked… multiple food-based family gatherings and grandmother-courier duties getting in the way of my plans to test out the Montane pieces through the trinity of walking, cycling and climbing. I was, able to wear them day-to-dayday-to-day though, on a couple of short walks, and on one longer one on Dartmoor last Friday. I plumped for one of my old favorites, the ‘Widecombe Round’. It’s a varied, scenic route around the village of Widecombe-in-the-Moor, and even more so in the right conditions. Luckily conditions were just perfect for beautiful pictures on this occasion, so I’ve interspersed my Montane review with them to liven up any dry technical details!

(more…)

Read More

Take Note World: Rab is Awesome

Last weekend whilst discussing work with my friend Alex, I was surprised to hear that he had never heard of the brand Rab. This was very surprising to me, because of the 50+ brands we sell at Webtogs, Rab ranks second only to The North Face in terms of sales – and even then it’s a close-run thing. It’s also very much the ‘it’ brand in the market at the moment, with a rapidly expanding fan-base and amazing sell-through, not to mention the fact that it’s been around as a flag bearer of the British outdoor kit industry since the 1980s. (more…)

Read More

Lowe Alpine DryFlo… The Legend Returns

Lowe Alpine DryFlo is back. And it’s better than ever.

DryFlo is a baselayer technology that first hit the market in the early 2000s to universal acclaim. Its superb wicking, cooling and odour-resistant properties came at an affordable price, and were appreciated across the board by professional bodies and customers alike. Sadly, due to the various financial troubles experienced by Lowe Alpine over the past decade, with it’s former owner Aspen battling to cut costs, DryFlo, along with all Lowe Alpine Apparel, ceased production in 2011.

But thankfully this is not the end of the story. Under the new ownership of Equip, production of Lowe Alpine Apparel has resumed. DryFlo is back, and it’s better than ever! (more…)

Read More

First Look at the Lightwave T0 XT Tent

Getting the Lightwave T0XT tent out of the bag the first thing that hits you is the quality of the fabrics and components. The tent is inner pitch first with two poles that create the main sleeping area and an additional pole that creates the vestibule. The poles come in three colours, Green, Gray, and Black, which match up to colour coding on the pole sleeves for ease of pitching.


Once the Inner tent is up the Flysheet can be added and the porch pole inserted. There are velcro tabs on the flysheet that be attached to the inner tent for additional stability. There is one peg point at the nose and one at the tail of the tent.

T0 XT Flysheet on

When putting up the tent the quality of the manufacture starts to really shine through. I was particularly impressed with the way the high stress points on the fly had been constructed and they certainly have a “these are never going to fail” feel to them.

Tab Detail

The Lightwave T0 XT tent has a huge amount of living space for such a lightweight tent. Its not possible to sit up comfortably for someone my size but there is easily enough space to get dressed and sort kit out. There are two mesh storage pockets either side of the door which will help keep small items tidy in the tent. There are no real venting options as the door to the inner is part Mesh and part Nylon, this is to save weight and to my mind not a big issue. The extended porch provides loads of storage space and will easily accommodate the preparation of food in bad weather.

Inner Tent

In summary I think that this is is a truly excellent tent that oozes quality and great design. Its not the lightest tent in its class and it is certainly not the cheapest but in my view it is easily the nicest. I think the T0 XT would be particularly suitable for UK use as the door design will ensure no water will get in the tent when entering and exiting in foul weather also there is not as much mesh on the inner as many other similar tents which will make the tent feel warmer in the spring and autumn.

Read More

Primaloft jackets – Keeping warm in the wet British winter.

It’s said there are just two certainties in life, death and taxes, but I’ve long thought there’s another certainty that should be included in this elite list – if you’re out in the British hills it’s going to rain. In summer it’s not a problem, with hardshells, softshells, packlite and a million and one choices to pick from, but in winter it’s not so easy.

Outside it’s that most perfect of walking days; that combination of cool blue, cloudless skies, a chill in the air and an inviting crispness to the ground. It’s a day just made for your favourite down jacket and a camera, but you just can’t avoid the fact that this is Britain and no matter what it looks like now, chances are the rain will find you and down and rain don’t get on well.
The alternative to down is Primaloft, a synthetic fibre that keeps working even when wet. Being synthetic it doesn’t quite match up to down for pack size and weight, and isn’t quite as warm ounce for ounce as a filling, but it’s got definite advantages when it comes to the British climate. Primaloft is water resistant, and even when it does get wet it retains the majority of its insulating properties and dries quickly. It’s often overlooked, but Primaloft garments are usually machine washable, whilst down means a trip to a specialist cleaner.

With autumn already upon us and winter creeping up we thought we’d give you the low down on four of our top name Primaloft jackets, all under £150.

Mountain Equipment Fitzroy Jacket
Price: £134.99
Weight: 620g/22oz
Features: Turn-with-you adjustable hood, 3 external pockets, Primaloft 100/60g combination for weight saving.

Mountain EquipmentFitzroy
The Fitzroy’s been with us for a couple of years now, and picked up the “Best in Test” from Trail recently with its combination of Primaloft and Drilite Loft. The main body is filled with 100g Primaloft One – the highest grade Primaloft, with 60g filling in the arms to give your core warmth but keep that extra flexibility in the arms, and keep weight to a minimum. A double layer of Primaloft in the hood completes the insulation, with windproof, water resistant Drilite Loft covering the critical areas and a more breathable UltraSoft face fabric everywhere else.
The Mountain Equipment hood is legendary, and justifiably so with a good volume adjuster that’s truly helmet friendly and a stiffened peak that stays stiffened in the wind. The same attention to detail has gone into the draw cords for the hem which now have “capture points” to prevent snagging, and Velcro cuff fasteners you can manipulate with gloves on. You get four pockets, 3 on the outside and an internal zipped map pocket. The lower pockets are set a bit higher and a bit further in from the sides than on the other jackets making them easily accessible with a rucksack on.
Our View:
Value for money water resistant synthetic insulation that keeps working even when wet. Well positioned pockets and excellent hood from a name you can trust.

 

Berghaus Combust Jacket
Price: £143.99
Weight: 775g/27oz
Features: Highly tear resistant outer, close fitting baffles, Primaloft PL1 filling, Raptor hood.
Berghaus Combust

The Combust jacket is from Berghaus’ Extreme range and features Primaloft PL1 filling and a coated nylon outer. Instantly recognisable the Combust’s outer shell uses a DWR and PU coating to keep the water out, with a unique combination of 15 denier nylon and 50 denier yarn making it highly tear resistant. The innovations don’t stop there, though, with a DWR coating applied to the lining and unlike the other jackets on test a storm flap over the main zip.
The Combust features an enormous, but fully adjustable hood that will happily take a helmet and still close up tight against the elements, and an elasticated internal pocket ideal for keeping your drink above freezing perched on a Scottish winter ledge. The two hand warmer pockets benefit from a soft-touch lining and the cord zips are just long enough to use gloved, though lack any form of toggle on the end. Once on you can’t fail to notice the sleeping bag style baffles in the main body which pull the jacket into you for a closer fit. The close fit also applies overall, and if you’re planning on using it as a traditional belay jacket to be thrown on over everything else when you stop then removed for setting off again, then you’ll probably need to step up a size.
Our View:
Innovative tear resistant construction combined with top quality insulation and a close fit give a very warm product. Not the lightest jacket on test, but it is cut a little longer and the generous hood will take a helmet with ease.

 

Rab Generator Alpine Jacket
Price: £139.99
Weight: 520g/18oz
Features: Technical version of classic Generator, Pertex Endurance shell, Roll down hood, Extra length.
Rab Generator Alpine

The Rab Generator jacket is a legend in its own lifetime, renowned for its versatility in typical British conditions. The Alpine takes the best of the Generator’s features and adds to them. Like the Mountain Equipment Fitzroy the Generator Alpine uses 100g Primaloft One in the main body and 60g in the arms, but the outer shell is made from hard wearing Pertex Endurance.
Unlike the other jackets on test the Generator Alpine features a helmet compatible hood that you can roll down and secure when not needed. You only get two external pockets and one zipped pocket on the inside, but the back is slightly longer than the standard jacket and zips are water resistant. The Pertex Endurance fabric gives a more heavyweight feel to the Generator Alpine on the outside, but on the inside Rab have chosen to stick with Quantum for a softer feel.
Our View:
The roll down hood makes this an ideal jacket for winter belays or sitting around the camp fire in the colder months. A stronger, more hard wearing, version of a classic jacket with excellent warmth per gram.

 

The North Face Redpoint Optimus Jacket
Price: £118.99
Weight: 600g/21oz
Features: Seamless shoulder yoke, packs into internal pocket, Primaloft PL1 filling, Alpine Fit.
The North Face Redpoint Optimus

The Redpoint Optimus was developed for the North Face athletes team and became their favourite product with its Primaloft One filling and ripstop nylon shell. The 100g PL1 filling gives plenty of insulation and the shell is DWR coated giving all round security. A new design for winter 2009 is a snag-free, seamless, shoulder yoke that gives better flexibility for arms and shoulders.
The hood on the Redpoint Optimus is fully adjustable, and you get the traditional complement of two hand warmer and one breast pocket on the outside. The inside, zippered pocket doubles up as storage for your jacket when not in use, saving carrying an extra stuff sack. Unlike the other jackets on test the Redpoint uses softshell fabric for the cuffs, using elastic rather than adjustable Velcro fastenings. The Alpine fit is a little shorter than the Berghaus Combust and Rab Generator Alpine but the overall fit is a little less tight.
Our View:
The Redpoint Optimus offers great value for money, coming in cheaper than the other jackets on test. Rolling into its own pocket for storage it’s ideal for cold winter days when you can’t afford to worry about rain.

Read More