Lightening up.

It has been a stressful Spring. I finished up my contract at Karolinska and had a seminar to prepare for in the research I have done on Progeria, and a submission wrestling tournament to train for. I decided a suitable reward after everything was cleared up would be a few days hike into Norway, Hardangervidda national park to be exact. I want to go there because just West of the park is Trolltunga and every time I look at pictures of it my hands get all sweaty.  It’s the same light, nervous electricity I get when climbing, just on the border between enjoyment and terror.

The obvious thing to do when faced with an aberration of nature that makes your hands sweaty is to go there alone, a thousand kilometres from home, inching along the rain-slick surface to the very edge and then look over into the abyss to ensure that yes, it is as terrifying as it looks. Maybe after a few shots of Jameson to give some Dutch courage.
The plan was to go this week, but during the tournament a toe-hold I got into strained my knee a little, so I’ve decided to delay the trip a little to heal up. Michi had done a solo hike in Hardangervidda a year ago, and when asked for advice he told me that a light pack was essential. With the hilly terrain his over-loaded rucksack had really worn him down. So I’m using my convalescence time to whittle away any extra weight. First I decided to check out my cutlery sets, I’ve always thought they seemed a little heavy.

200 grammes per set… Wow, I was genuinely impressed. These are solid steel, heavy gauge fork, knife, spoon and tin opener sets. They ought to survive a nuclear holocaust or two. Don’t worry, it’s not like I’d go around with a single set of cutlery that weighted that much. I would usually bring two or three, in case someone needed a spare. Over half a kilo of cutlery. That’s as much weight as my D80.

A quick trip into town and now we have an Optimus titanium spork on the scales. 18 grammes. I reasoned my way up the plastic, aluminium, titanium cost-ladder by thinking plastic would break and aluminium is too good a conductor and would be hell in cold temperatures. And the chicks love titanium sporks.

It also fits nicely in the Optimus Crux lite kit that Hendrik sent me as part of a “passaround” review. This is a pretty cool cooking set, I’ve had it out for a few wanders so far. Very light and takes a small gas canister in the centre, cooks up a cup of tea in a flash.

So until I start back to work in a month, my routine is to get up late, make endless cups of tea, study telomeres and progressive atherosclerosis for an hour, then pile all my Norway gear up and try to be brutal and eliminate all the heavy shit. It’s very relaxing 🙂

One thought on “Lightening up.

  • May 14, 2010 at 9:01 am

    Good luck in Hardangervidda! I haven't heard anything from you so I hope every thing's holding up nicely and the weather's nicer than what we have in the Stockholm region right now!


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