Winter work

I've been asked by TGO magazine to write another piece about light hiking, this time seeing how light we can go in winter. We did something similar between Christmas and Hogmanay 2001 which is on my website. Now I'd like to go even lighter without comprimising safety. That's tricky to do because you only find your limits by pushing them; push too far in winter and an epic isn't far away.

I'm thinking of using Inov-8 shoes with SealSkinz waterproof socks, my prefered combination for Autumn backpacking. But with snow on the ground I'll need some grip, so I'm going to try Yaktrax.Will they work in Scottish winter conditions on the hill? We'll see.

This is what they look like on their website. A knowledgeable friend remarked they "looked like Mallory Crampons" and would need good judgement of snow conditions. I'll report back.

I'm now working my way through catalogues trying to establish what's the lightest, warmest gear around. Any suggestions, please e-mail me or comment.

Oh, if you know when it's going to snow, I'd be delighted to get a tip-off!

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