Things Real Men Do In Summer
THEY GO CAMPING BUT DON’T ALWAYS PACK A TENT
There’s camping, and then there’s camping. Forget the `33,598 canvas tent with fold-out patio and communal dining area. Jason Ingamells, the chief instructor at Woodland Ways, breaks down the basics of building a comfortable shelter for nowt.
FIND THE RIGHT PIECE OF GROUND
“Here’s what to avoid: stay away from the bottom of hills, because of cold air sinks. And don’t set up at the top of a hill, because you’ll be exposed to the elements. Don’t settle in a dip, as it’ll gather water. And you want to avoid sleeping on a slope, as you’ll never get a good night’s sleep if your head is below your feet.”
USE NATURE’S STRENGTH
“Don’t be tempted to try and dig poles into the ground in the middle of a field or hillside, as this saps your energy. Instead, harness nature’s strength by using a tree as one side or your shelter.
WEATHERPROOF YOUR COVER
“When building the other sides of your shelter you need to think ‘angle’, ‘material’ and ‘volume’. Collect a load of logs and prop them up against the tree at an angle of about 50 degrees. This is your inner framework. Plug up any holes with a thick layer of dead leaves on the outside of the wood. In terms of volume, the depth of the leaf wall should reach from your fingertips to your elbow and be dense enough to block out the sun.”
INSULATE YOUR SLEEPING SURFACE
“There is a reason scouts use roll-mats and homeless people sleep on cardboard boxes. It’s because your body heat conducts through to a colder surface (like bare earth or pavement) very fast. Want to stay warm through the night? Find some insulation to sleep on. Dry leaf material will work, but avoid moss as it’s cold and damp.”
They work on their arms. The old-fashioned way
Gym memberships, titanium dumbbells and tubs of protein powder are for part-timers. Want to get big for summer? All you need is a sense of steely determination, access to the great outdoors and a goddam bench.
They take road trips. Without Google Maps
We’ve driven the length and breadth of the country, and as far as we are concerned, no road trip beats Leh-Ladakh. It’s that time of the season when the scorching summer heat is taking a toll over your day’s nitty-gritty. Whether you take the bike or travel in the comfort of a 4 wheel drive, Leh provides a thrilling experience for those who wish or dream of riding through the highest mountain range in the world. No road trip can match up to the exhilarating and rejuvenating experience that one goes through reaching this ‘rooftop of the world’. One can come across many of the famous Buddhist Gompas along the way while driving through small but very serene villages, all at the backdrop of the snow-coated Himalayan mountain ranges. And how can one miss the sumptuous gastronomic feasts of Himalayan cuisine? The best time to plan your trip is from mid-June to September. Since the ride from Manali to Leh is about 1500 km, we suggest you load your trunk (of the car) with the bare essentials and a lot of packaged food (just in case you get disgusted by the Himalayan offerings).