Wish List

Bird­ing good­ies in­clude socks and back­packs!

Bird Watching (UK) - - Contents - WORDS: DAVID CHAN­DLER

UPHILLSPORT 4-LAYER HIK­ING DRYTECH SOCKS, £19.99

Made in Fin­land from OEKO-TEX cer­ti­fied yarns and avail­able in two women’s sizes, two men’s and three uni­sex, in var­i­ous colours. These four-layer socks are 40% cool­max and 28% merino wool, so they feel nice, and can breathe. Mois­ture is shipped out and your feet are kept cosy. Flex­tech puts a bit of elas­tic­ity where you need it, too. Socks from Fin­land! They are avail­able on­line from sock­shop.co.uk (price given above for uni­sex pair) and also from sport­pur­suit.com

BOOT BA­NANAS, £14

You’ll be buy­ing these for a friend, not for your­self. This friend of yours, af­ter a hard day’s bird­ing, has very whiffy boots. Here’s a so­lu­tion for your friend. Stick a ba­nana in their boots. A Boot Ba­nana that is. These ba­nanas are loaded with nat­u­rally ab­sorbent salts, min­er­als and plant ex­tracts, plus laven­der, lemon and other es­sen­tial oils. They cut the smell, ab­sorb mois­ture and are an­timi­cro­bial. The ‘skin’ is 100% cot­ton. Works for 6-12 months. boot­bananas.com

PRIMUS TRAILBREAK EX, 1L FLASK, £42

Primus call it a “rugged ex­pe­di­tion bot­tle”. So, if you’re go­ing on a rugged ex­pe­di­tion you’ll need one. This stain­less steel flask is wrapped in sil­i­cone for pro­tec­tion, for grip, and to avoid the dis­com­fort of cold metal in ex­treme con­di­tions. It comes with a reg­u­lar stop­per to keep more heat or cold in, and a click-close one for drink­ing di­rectly from the flask. In 0.75L (£37.50) and 1.0L sizes, in coal, tan­ger­ine, barn red or moss. 694g. 296mm high. 88mm di­am­e­ter. cotswold­out­door.com

PYRAMID LYME DIS­EASE TEST KIT, £9.99

There are 2,000-3,000 new cases of Lyme dis­ease per year in Eng­land and Wales and 25-50% of the vic­tims don’t have the tell-tale ‘tar­get’ rash. This box of tick tricks has tick-re­moval tools, a tube to stick the ticks in, and pre­paid pack­ing. Post the pack­age for a re­sult within four work­ing days. The ticks are tested for three Borel­lia bac­te­ria species – the ones as­so­ci­ated with Lyme dis­ease. If you’re in­fected, rapid an­tibi­otic treat­ment can make a big dif­fer­ence. pyra­mid­trav­elshop.co.uk

CASIO PRO TREK WSD-F20 SMART WATCH, £450

It’s a bit more than a watch. It’s a GPS that you can use with a down­loaded colour map to track your po­si­tion, even off­line. It’s a com­pass, an al­time­ter, a barom­e­ter. It will tell you when the sun rises and sets, and the times and heights of high and low tide. It does other things, too, and will even tell the time. Look out for a re­view in this es­teemed jour­nal in the not-too-dis­tant fu­ture. Avail­able in or­ange, white or black – the watch, not the es­teemed jour­nal. www.ca­sioon­line.co.uk

SPRAYWAY SAUL FLEECES FOR MEN, FROM £55

New this year, the Saul range from Sprayway comes in full-zip (£60) or half-zip (£55) ver­sions in chrome, Aztec or Yukon/blazer colours. How­ever long the zip, the Sauls are quick-dry­ing and light­weight but warm – so could be good for cooler au­tumn days. The half-zip has a zipped pocket on the arm; the full-zip has two zipped hand pock­ets. Could one of these be your new mid-layer? sprayway.com

FIREPOT DE­HY­DRATED MEALS, FROM £6.50

If you’re fed up with squashed sand­wiches, why not take a Firepot bird­ing? These de­hy­drated (not freeze-dried) meals are “de­li­cious, nu­tri­tious” and slow-cooked in a Dorset barn. There are seven meal op­tions in­clud­ing mush­room risotto, dal with rice and spinach, chilli con carne and posh pork and beans. And all the ones I men­tioned are gluten-free. Open the pouch, pour in boil­ing wa­ter, stir, wait, eat, sit back and re­flect on a fine day’s bird­ing. Free from ar­ti­fi­cial ad­di­tives, flavour­ings and preser­va­tives. out­door­food.com

GP XPLOR PH14 HEAD TORCH, £17.99

A new, af­ford­able head torch from GP Bat­ter­ies. The PH14 throws out 200 lu­mens of light and runs off three reg­u­lar or recharge­able AAA bat­ter­ies. It has three bright­ness set­tings, a flash­ing mode, spot and flood beams and red night vi­sion – which helps pre­serve your night vi­sion and is good for wildlife watch­ing. There’s a mo­tion sen­sor bright­ness mode and IPX6 wa­ter re­sis­tance. There are two other head torches in the XPLOR range, too. Go on – shine a lit­tle light… uk.gp­bat­ter­ies.com

OSPREY HIKELITE BACK­PACK, FROM £70

Its fea­tures in­clude a sus­pended mesh back sys­tem to help keep you cool, a de­tach­able rain­cover, stretch mesh side pock­ets, com­pres­sion straps, an in­ter­nal hy­dra­tion sleeve, a re­mov­able hip belt and a trekking pole at­tach­ment. Avail­able in 18L (£70) and 26L (£80) ca­pac­i­ties in a range of colours in­clud­ing black, aloe green and shi­itake grey. I’m not sure they thought that last one through prop­erly. This Osprey does not catch fish but might just travel to and from West Africa. os­preyeu­rope.com

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