Westbury and Melbury Hill

Westbury and Melbury Hill

I’m bored of talking about how wet it has been down here in the South West recently and trying to persuade those who still wish to dig their heads in to the sand about the reality of global warming. We have had a few moments of blue skies though, a couple of weeks ago we had our friends down with their three boys and managed to cram in a cracking weekend with no dark clouds to be seen.

First up was Westbury for a gallop along the white horse. I love that place as it has a flat field for footie / rugby and kite flying but then you get to explore over the horse and the rest of the earthworks that are there. The following day we headed up to Melbury Hill for cracking views over the Blackmore Vale. Heres a quick vid of our two days.

Chee Dale & a New Year

A very happy belated Christmas & New Year to all. So far it’s been a cracker and a couple of days ago was no exception with jaunts To Chee Dale, Millers Dale, Arbor Low and Bakewell.

What’s surprised me however has been editing and putting together the movie you see below on my phone. I shouldn’t be amazed any more about what technology can do but I’ve been genuinely blown away about the possibilities of iMovie on the iPhone.

Anyway I’ll shut up now and you can watch the swollen river through Chee Dale try and wash me away.  Have yourselves a peaceful and joyful New Year that spreads far in to 2014.

Review: Target Dry Kids Mac in a Sac

Ifor & Ellis standing still for once.

Apparently it’s the law that every time you see an Auntie or Great Aunt they have  to mention how much you have grown when your a kid. It used to annoy the hell out of me when I was young, but as a Dad I’m all too aware of how quickly my two little darlings are sprouting up faster than a certain Mr Jack and his beanstalk. I was pretty chuffed as a result to be sent two mac in a sac’s for review by the good folk at Target Dry as Ifor and Ellis are going through jackets every month it seems. So, being an outdoor geek, let’s take a look at what you get.


  • Waterproof, Breathable & Windproof
  • Fully Taped Seams
  • Concealed, Adjustable Hood
  • Reversed Front Zip
  • Zipped Front Pockets
  • Back Vent
  • Packs into its own sack
  • Elasticated Comfort Cuff
  • Adjustable Drawcord at Hem
  • Reflective Branding
  • 2 Year Guarantee

So far pretty standard for a waterproof jacket, but what really impressed me was the cost of them – just £20 including p&p. For those of us who like getting out and about and don’t want to spend £60+ on a decent jacket every time Damian / Esmerelda shoots up (delete as appropriate for your little poppet), these are to my mind a bargain.

The breathability is also a huge plus for me. Ifor in particular has a couple of jackets that when he runs leave him swamped with sweat inside. Don’t get me wrong, no jacket is going to ever cope with the amount of sweat he produces as a SMEALD (single minded extremely active little dude) but the breathability of 5000gsm does help. Couple that with the large vent at the back and it performs better than his other jackets. Thumbs up.

The other major plus is the fact these things are so damn light and pack in to their own bag. Taking them on and off as a result or sticking them in a rucksack in case the weather comes out to play then becomes so much simpler. As a Dad (aka packhorse) the less weight I have to carry, the more times I can throw them laughing up in the air and down again. Another thumbs up.

As a weather proof jacket I also like the fact they have a decent drawcord so when we have been out on Dartmoor and the mist & rain comes down, they can seal up to protect themselves. The hood is also a good fit in that regard with an elasticated hood and front mouth closure. Sadly you can still hear them talking through this.

As for the down side, the only thing that leaves me a little worried is the thickness of the fabric and it’s durability. As jackets get handed down between sons this does mean that it may be better value for me to get a slightly more durable jacket if these don’t last. I’ll keep you posted however and update this blog post as they get stress tested.

Speaking of which we have tested on beaches, county hills, mountains, bike rides and so far for their weight and sheer practicality they have replaced the other waterproof coats the boys have. I guess that tells you you all you need to know.

Good Stuff

– Lightweight and packable to the max.
– Breathable.
– Extremely good value for money.

Not so good stuff

-Fabric isn’t the toughest we’ve seen but we’ll update you after more adventures.

You can buy the Kid’s Mac in a Sac here in a variety of lovely colours for £19.99 direct from the Target Dry website with free postage

Old school train to the beach

Please note that Target Dry provided these jackets for free, however the views expressed as always are my own and given without fear nor favor. The value of your house can go up and down as well apparently and the contents of this blog post may be hot.


Social Hiking Podcast

I was incredibly privileged to be asked by Phil from Social Hiking to take part in his second podcast recently and the fruits of our labours have just been uploaded. I’m pretty stoked with the results , if nothing else because it’s a reminder of a fantastic weekend that was had recording it.


You can download the podcast from iTunes here, or download straight from Social Hiking here. That last link has loads of great show notes as well BTW. You can also listen to the podcast below.

We looked at walking with kids and joys and not so joys that can involve, went walking with the kids in the woods, packed in a microadventure and looked at updates to Social Hiking and our fav maps. I would like to thank Phil for doing a masterful job in putting together the podcast itself and for the fact  he also uploaded some Audioboo’s of our climb up Alfreds Tower, the Tour de Dorset + Bongos that we came across and some outtakes 🙂

Jurassic Wild Camp

Let me know what you think in the comments below!