MADE BY MEMBERS • February 2022
Have you vowed to be a bit more adventurous this year? Then let us hand the mic to our intrepid friend, former Royal Marines Commando Aldo Kane, who races through his five must-pack items (not included: Aldo’s new memoir, Lessons from the Edge, which we’ll be packing instead)
Out on the road, I almost always have the same baggage set-up. My hold bag is an Osprey Transporter or, if it’s somewhere not too rugged, the Osprey Rolling Transporter. They’re mega durable and, I’ve found, can withstand the rigours of multi-month mixed adventures. Inside each are Osprey’s handy packing cubes, as they help me fit more in. My carry-on is the Osprey Mutant 38 (noticing a theme?), which is as at home on the daily commute as it is being dragged up big walls and down jungle rivers. Finally, an Ultralight Pack Liner keeps everything safe and dry.
This particular gilet comes with me on every job, hot or cold. It’s lightweight and packs down to almost nothing. Even the desert can get cold, so this forms part of my layering system. I even wore it recently under my dry suit, diving under sea ice in the High Arctic. It’s a super versatile bit of kit that is easy to pack, light to carry and packs a thermal punch.
I can often be travelling for months on end, so keeping fit is high on my agenda. Even when I’m travelling especially light, I always take a basic gym kit with me so that I can train anywhere, mainly UKSF mobility power bands, which allow me to strength train and stretch while taking up next to no room in my bag. I’m also a big fan of the TRX Tactical suspension trainer. I’ll hang it off the door in hotel rooms and, out in the field, I’ll use anything I can find from a helicopter chassis to a tree.
In the last few years I’ve done 14 world-first expeditions, be they rowing across the Atlantic, dropping to the bottom of the ocean or climbing some really big walls. Recording these moments is incredibly important to me and so I need a camera that is small enough to be unobtrusive yet excellent in image quality. That’s why I love the Leica Q2. With any other larger camera system, I just wouldn’t have the capacity to lug it around, take it out or change lenses. Plus, it protects itself against dust and, to an extent, water, so I can photograph my milestones whatever the conditions.
I never leave home without a watch. To me, time is everything and more valuable than money. Mine is a Bremont S501, a robust diving watch that is waterproof to 500m. I need a watch to be enduring, useful and to, quite literally, never miss a beat, so this is the one for me. I have genuinely tested it beyond endurance – inside active volcanoes, freediving under ice and at high altitude in the Himalayas. I have it mounted on a Nato strap with a Suunto Clipper button compass.
Aldo Kane’s memoir, Lessons from the Edge, is out now (£19.99, Hodder & Stoughton)