I also take my camera just in case i spot something worth snapping. Most times i come home without taking any photo's and without any gear but today i saw one view worth taking.
Coming out of The Cotswold Shop after a chat with the staff, i was just heading for a coffee shop when i noticed the low sun penetrating between the new tall buildings behind Spinnigfields. I wondered if i could get a photograph of some long shadows but as i crossed the bridge over the Irwell at the bottom of Quay Street, i was almost blinded by the suns reflection on the angled glass off The Lowry Hotel.
Going back to my visit to Cotswold Shop, i was interested to have a look at the Jack Wolfskin trouser range , in particular the Wolfskin Vertec trousers that Andy Howell had reviewed a little while ago HERE. Unfortunately, Andy (Cotswold Staff) told me that the Vertec and all the other trousers in the range were not going to be stocked but could be ordered etc etc.
He kindly checked the computer and told me that the only place in the North West who were stocking the trousers was in Liverpool where the Cotswold Shop actually had a Wolfskin shop too.
I was a little disappointed but i still took the opportunity to look at the Wolfskin Jackets and was impressed with the Resolution which is selling for £150.00. It's a heavy weight, full winter jacket. Good protection from the elements.
My favorite trousers by far are the Montane Terra's but because they have a crap belt and no wallet pocket i tend to pick my Columbia Silver Ridge more often than not or my Rohan Ether’s which i must do a review on soon. Not that the Columbia's are better for backpacking but they are comfy, lightweight, have pockets in the right place, dry quick and take any belt you desire to use. I notice that the Montane 2012 versions here, at Craigdon Mountain Sports, have now changed the belt to a std replacement one but i don’t think they have put a wallet pocket in. They are obviously watching the overall weight.
Wolfskin are about to release a lightweight range of gear but guess what! Cotswolds are not going to stock it. Andy said he had seen some of it from the rep but that was about as far as the info went. I feel it's about time one of the big retailers stuck there neck out and started stocking some gear that is not in every other gear shop in town. I remember not that long ago i was in Cotswolds and chatting to them about Inov-8 shoes and waterproof socks and i was told that they were not stocking them because they were a niche market. How things have changed since then.
Did i find a bargain? Not in Cotswold, but i did pick up a couple of Airtex military T shirts from Military Kit on Tib Street for £14 each. These will be good for spring. Quite light weight and very well made. This shop is a real Aladdin’s cave and it’s surprising how much gear and how many well know outdoor brands they stock. It’s worth a look if you are every in this neck of the woods.
Oh yes and i did have a couple of pints of Joseph Holts bitter which cost £2.35 a pint. A bargain at any price.