Thursday, 6 December 2012

The Trailstar gets its first outing

A few months ago I finally took the plunge and ordered myself a Mountain Laurel Designs Trailstar. At the time I ordered the advertised waiting period was 12 weeks with a possible further couple of weeks for shipping, thankfully I didn't have to wait that long and mine arrived in around 8 weeks. Due to the poor weather we've been having recently it took a couple of weeks before I managed to get it sealed and ever since then I've been itching to get out and use it. I finally got the chance a few weeks ago so I thought I'd share a few photo's/words from my trip. 

Spot the Trailstar

With a couple of days free I decided to head up to the Lakes to one of my favourite areas around Borrowdale/Ennerdale. I left the car just before mid day and headed up Fleetwith Pike which soon got the legs warmed up! I then headed back down and along to Blackbeck Tarn and on to Innominate Tarn where I stopped for some lunch. There're some really great views all around this area and as usual I took a few photo's along the way.

Last time I was up this way I kept an eye out for potential future pitches for my Laser Comp, I spotted a few and as such had a pitch in mind for the Trailstar. After having my lunch by the Tarn I went to double check that the pitch I had in mind would be suitable for the Trailstar.

Once I had a quick look and decided it was a goer I made my way back to Haystacks and then dropped down a little towards Black Sail Hut. At this time of year it gets dark around 4pm in this area and as I hadn't used the Trailstar yet I wanted to make sure I had some light whilst getting set up, as such I headed back to the spot I'd found and got the Trailstar set up. 

Pitching was straight forward and a lot faster than I thought it would be for a first go. I thought I might end up with a few rocks in there with me but it seemed to fit nicely between them all. Ideally I would of had it pitched facing the views but it would have been straight in to the wind that way so decided against it.

Once the Trailstar was up it was time to get a brew on, I've recently put together a new meths cook kit and so far it's performed really well. It's based around the Evernew Ti DX stand and Ti burner and all packs down in to the Alpkit MytiMug, really pleased with it so far.

Once I'd had a brew I got my sleeping bag etc set up inside the Trailstar and then got some more water on and had something hot to eat, I took a mountain house meal with me this time, Chicken Tikka with rice, which was pretty tasty and it was nice to have something warm to eat as the temperature was starting to drop with the mist starting to surround me. 
Once I'd been fed a had a good look around the area close to camp and took a few photo's in the last of the light.

Trailstar in the mist

Checking in

MYOG Lantern at work

Inside the Trailstar

Once it got dark I climbed in to bed and read for a while and listened to some tunes before nodding off. I didn't have the best nights sleep, I woke up once needing to answer the call of nature, once when the rain started, and another 3 or so times due to my Thermarest slipping around and out from underneath me. When I made my bathtub floor I added a few strips of seamgrip to stop me sliding around inside it, I'd forgottn to do the same inside my bivy so my Thermarest refused to stay still on the slippery silnylon bivy floor. Looks like i'll need to get the seamgrip out again!

In the morning I took a few more photo's, had a brew and some porridge and with the pitch returned to nature I was all packed up and ready to head off by around 8. 

I spent the next few hours walking, taking in Haystacks, Seat, High Crag, High Stile, and Red Pike, before heading back to the car. Whilst up on the top of High Stile the clouds well and truly dumped themselves on top of me taking the visabilty down to around 10m! It got pretty chilly up there too.

In the clouds

All in all a great couple of days and apart from the slippery Therma issue I was really happy with all the kit I took with me, can't wait to get out again. 

As for the Trailstar, I have to say that I love this thing already! The space underneath it is immense and it's so easy/quick to pitch, it packs down nice and small as well as being nice and light. The workmanship on it is spot on, I just wish I'd ordered one 3-4 months earlier as I can see the Trailstar becoming a firm favourite amongst my kit!


1 comment:

  1. thanks reminds me of my last.
    keep up the adventure.