What's in the gear store......
Bothy shelters (or sometimes called bothy bags) offer essential emergency protection for hillgoers. These simple rectangular fabric box shapes take their name from the basic buildings which are available in remote mountain areas and can be deployed in seconds to get a group of people under cover from the elements. Once the group are inside the shelter warms up quite quickly with shared body heat and their water resistant fabric then also protects users from rain and snow. Modern designs come in different sizes to suit varying group sizes, pack to a small size and weight and are durable enough for regular use. You could spend a night out in one but in reality ours mostly get used as a sheltered spot for a lunch break.
We never head into the hills without one (for both guiding situations and personal adventures) and we have a range of sizes in our storeroom (see photo). We use Terra Nova models because we’ve found them to be durable and effective, but there are plenty of good alternatives on the market. We also pack ours in dry bags because, although Terra Nova models come with a combined vent/stuff sack built in, dry bags just help speed packing up and cope with the shelter when it is dripping wet.
You can get a 4 person Terra Nova bothy shelter for about £40 and, when you need that port in a storm, it will feel like money very well spent.
Posted by Paul