Patagonia Untethered Kit – the Zenith of Simple Wil Rickards Do you crave simplicity? Are you a closet artisan? Do you want to immerse yourself in the wilderness and give it the time to seep into every pore of your being? Then maybe the Patagonia Untethered Kit is something for which you have been waiting…
Do you crave simplicity? Are you a closet artisan? Do you want to immerse yourself in the wilderness and give it the time to seep into every pore of your being? Then maybe the Patagonia Untethered Kit is something for which you have been waiting a long time. If this isn’t you, feel free to move on.
Patagonia wood burning stove
What happens when the boss, who just so happens to be a blacksmith of some repute, asks you to create a wood-burning stove and a selection of equipment to go with it? The Untethered Kit! It is not for everyone. If you like to bring your creature comforts into the woods, you will not appreciate Patagonia’s latest offering. If, on the other hand, a little discomfort and hardship make you feel alive, take a closer look. If your idea of fun is to seek a soft bed of moss rather than put an extra puff in the inflatable mattress, this will be more seductive than a mysterious character at a masquerade. This kit’s design puts you into closer contact with nature rather than conquering it by bringing your house into the woods.
Patagonia Untethered Kit
The stove is not the fastest or hottest wood-burner I have used, but it is oh so elegant, light, and straightforward. It is also drop-dead gorgeous. If it were a car, it would leave Jeremy Clarkson drowning in his own drool. If you are going to use this, you want time. You need to collect a bunch of small, dry twigs, break and prepare them before you even think of starting to cook.
This burner will ritualize the art of cooking, rather like a Japanese tea ceremony. Also, be ready to go home smelling of campfire and having some accompanying stories to share. It takes about 10 minutes to boil a pot of water and only if you are attending to it diligently. There is something about watching the flames, knowing that you did not purchase a gas canister, it will not contribute to mindless waste, and you did not carry any fuel. The stove itself only weighs 7.5 ounces. Its companion, the x MiiR Quantumiir Pot, has a heat exchanger, a silicone lid, and weighs in at about 12 ounces. I did not get to try it, but it looks equally sexy and will reduce cooking times.
Patagonia Middle Fork Pack
The stove joins the effortless brilliance of the Middle Fork Pack. A comfortable, small load hauler that is simplicity personified and reminds me of how little I need. This beauty has a single compartment with a roll-top and an internal zippered pocket. All the extraneous straps are removable, and you can add cord or bungee to the daisy chains to create compression straps if you wish. That is it. It is not designed to carry a lot, but this reinforces the concept of this kit’s design.
Patagonia Lightweight Sleeping Bag
Finally, the Lightweight Sleeping Bag weighs in at a mere 12.6 ounces, allowing people who sleep in their clothes to feel enclosed. There is no hood, it is lighter than mithril, and it will not be your friend in winter. It is though sufficient to allow you to feel as if you are climbing into something to go to bed. Any spooning mountaineer will find it the height of luxury considering how little they will have to pack.
Throw in some food, a tarp, a mat, a few extra clothes, a tenkara rod, the pot, and stove, and you are walking out of the door ready for an immersive adventure. And that is the point. If you are going out fishing and unsure if you want to bother coming home, this is probably something you will appreciate. If you like to meander, not sure where you are going but enjoy the intimacy of being out there, this is something to check out. Patagonia has created a kit of which cowboys and hobos would dream. If you have read this far, you will also probably enjoy the dreams it helps you create.
Wil was born in North Wales and steeped in its rich maritime, mountain and river folklore. In response to the request to “get a real job” he became first a teacher then professor of adventure education.
He then emigrated to where the sun shines for 300 days and snowfalls for 100 (Colorado). During more than 25 years as an outdoor educator, he worked Scottish winter seasons, taught canoeing, climbing, kayaking, and skiing throughout the States, Europe, and Australia. He also regenerated the University of Alaska Anchorage’s Outdoor Education program. His biggest adventure (by far) is fatherhood. It has also been the inspiration for his website www.wherethefruitis.com.
Things he likes to do include (middle) aging gracefully, and skiing (telemark) aggressively. He is happiest outdoors with a good view, good company, good weather/snow and the residue of self-powered adventure; sweat, a manic grin, and wild eyes.
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