The Duke of Edinburgh's Award have a recommended kit list for their expeditions. We stock a large proportion of the specific products that they recommend from the brands Lifesystems, Lifeventure, Vango and Trangia, but we also carry lots of other products that we feel are equally good alternatives and in a number of cases much better. Read on to find out more.

Duke of Edinburgh's Award Expedition Kit List - Personal Kit (we'll cover group kit in a later installment)


1 pair of walking boots - Up and Under recommend their contract boot which is either the Contour Navigator or Scarpa Ranger. If these don't give the best fit try from our range of AsoloMeindl, Salomon, Scarpa and Zamberlan boots for more hilly or mountainous expeditions. For less demanding terrain on Bronze Expeditions you could try trekking or approach shoes or mids from Keen and Salomon.

2 pairs of walking socks and liner socks - Up and Under outdoor gear recommend Bridgedale Comfort Trekker socks with a 2 pair pack of Bridgedale Coolmax Liners for most people, although a Summit with the liners would mean that you might be able to buy a larger boot and get more life from it for growing feet.

2-3 t-shirts and a thermal t-shirt - Up and Under recommend 2 wicking base layer tops, 1or both of them long sleeved depending on the time of year. These are sometimes called thermals and can be worn in bed on cold nights as well as during the day. Helly Hansen provide us with their classic stripe crews and t's.

2 fleece tops or similar - Up and Under outdoor gear recommend a mid layer fleece and either an outer fleece or microfibre pertex jacket such as the Rab Vapour Rise Jacket. These will provide a versatile and comfortable combination that you can use outside of your expedition.

2 walking trousers - Up and Under recommend Rab Longitude Pants, these can be backed up with Helly Hansen longjohns for warmth during day or night. Alternatively if you are out in winter can we recommend Rab Vapour Rise Pants.

Underwear - Up and Under outdoor gear recommend you buy wicking options such as the Ice Breaker knickers and briefs and Odlo bras.

Nightwear - this can be your reserve wicking t and your longjohns.

1 pair of trainers - we wouldn't bother with the extra weight.

Warm Hat - If you haven't got a woolly hat for winter expeditions - click here.

Sunhat - If you haven't got a sun hat/cap for the summer expeditions - click here.

Gloves - Liner gloves are handy all year round for early morning breaking camp or if you get a bit chilled waiting for your mates to finish their rest. In winter you will need a warm waterproof glove like the Outdoor Designs Summit Shell or Summit Shell Junior.

Shorts - Lightweight and quickdrying man-made fibre shorts is the order of the day if its the right time of the year and the forecast is good enough to take them.

Suncream - Vital for being in the outdoors most times of year these days, you never know when you are going to get a hot day. The Duke of Edinburgh's Award recommend Life systems Mountain Formula SPF50 and Combi Stick 50.

Gaiters - For hill expeditions these are pretty much a must as far as we are concerned. Try our Rab options.

Waterproof Over-Trousers - If you can fit into them the Sprayway Junior Rainpant is worth a look for less serious expeditions as breathability is limited and may be a consideration for your Bronze Award. Most people however will do well with a Sprayway Santiago Rainpant and Atlanta Rainpant (female cut). Both are available in short and regular leg versions. They are easy to put on when wearing boots are fully waterproof semi-breathable and durable without being too bulky or heavy.

Cagoule/Waterproof Jacket - You will get a lot more wear out of your waterproof jacket than your trousers on your expedition and in general so it makes sense to get something with a better level of breathability for your comfort. Firstly check out our great outdoor deals to see if we have anything that might fit at the moment we particularly recommend the Lowe Alpine Brevent and Womens Brevent jackets. If you fancy something a little bit special take a look at RabsBergen and Vidda Jacket and the Venture and Venture Womens from Montane. These are all made from eVent the most breatahble waterproof membrane out there. There Rab Bergen and Vidda are our favourite mountain walking jackets whilst the Montane Venture jacket offers something that looks a bit younger and trendier.

We hope you find this helpful and will add in the next few installments: Personal Kit such as rucksacks and sleeping bags, Group Kit such as tents and stoves and Additional Optional Kit and Instructors/Assessors specific products.

See you then.

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