If you’re looking for adventure, remember you don’t have to travel too far to find it.
I ventured down to the wilds of Cornwall courtesy of luxury outdoor brand Filson to test some of their gear and learn more about the Filson philosophy.
The journey south was an adventure in itself. I decided to take a night National Express bus, which left London at 11pm and arrived in the town of Truro the next day around 8am.
I figured at least I wasn’t wasting the daytime journeying as I could nap on the bus. Plus, it was a snip of the price compared to the trains. And I had two seats to myself as the bus was practically empty. Not many are as crazy as me to do the journey, I figured!
After landing into Truro my journey to Camp Filson continued with an hour’s long boat journey down the River Fal to Trelissick Gardens, which is run by the National Trust.
It was absolutely peeing it down with rain – a true English summer – but luckily my belongings were safe in a Filson dry bag backpack. I was also wearing a Filson ultra light down jacket which protected me from the elements and kept me pleasantly warm.
Camp Filson was returning for the third year to 7th Rise. The outdoor pursuits spot is an awesome place.
It was set up by Thom Hunt, who some might recognize from the Channel 4 show Three Hungry Boys.
The Lancashire lad spent three years renovating a tumble down charcoal factory into a liveable space.
While the main house has several cosy bedrooms, there is a quirky tree house, hunting lodge and gypsy caravan where you can rest your head for the night.
Today Thom and his team run outdoor survival courses, which prove popular with corporations looking for team building opportunities.
They also get bachelor / ette and birthday groups down there, in a bid to do something a bit different to the standard drinkathon.
After disembarking the boat, I took the King Harry ferry bridge to get to the other side of the river.
From there I vaguely remembered the directions I should take… uphill, take a right, down a valley, through a field and down a ramshackle track…
Bingo! After my crazy journey, I’d finally made it to 7th Rise and Camp Filson.
Here, the outdoors is at the centre of things.
Everything is stripped back to basics and there is no phone signal.
Getting into the survival spirit of things, we kicked off things with a fire lighting course using carbon steel strikers.
After everyone had conjured up some flames we moved on to learning how to make a spoon from a log.
Thom makes everything look so easy and everyone looked a little daunted by the spoon-carving project, which involved hacking down a stump into something a little more sophisticated.
As light descended, we tucked into a rabbit chilli-style dish and dined outside.
From there we gathered around the fire to keep warm with the fresh night air.
7th Rise boasts a sublime location and the sunsets are pretty special, with cocktail colours gently descending behind the tree-covered hills and dancing on the rippling river.
The next day, we ventured out for a spot of canoeing and raft building with Cornwall Canoes.
This was a real highlight – and again, our Filson dry bags were put to the test!
To warm us up for when we returned chef maestro Simon Stallard, who is famed in the area for his epic beach cookouts, had some hot rum punch rolling.
He also had lobsters and hunks of pork ready to be cooked.
Luckily, Stallard stuck around for the entire day and we feasted on more of his delicious fodder for dinner.
The evening feast consisted of lamb that was wrapped in banana leaves, placed in a hot pit and buried with soil for most of the day.
Things got a little hazy as the evening rolled on, thanks to some punchy brews from a local mixologist Stuart Woodman.
All in all, another year at Camp Filson had been completely epic.
It was great to see more technical gear in the range, that’s perfect for hiking and outdoor pursuits.
The NeoShell jacket is a great product, with a waterproof and breathable fabric.
For chillier climates, the featherweight down jacket proves to be the perfect pick.
And one item on my wishlist is the Filson Mackinaw wool blanket, which guarantees to keep you warm and snuggly.
And what’s more, the women’s range in the UK is slowly expanding with a wider selection to come very soon…
To book a course at 7th Rise visit or to learn more visit www.7thrise.co.uk.
Tickets for direct travel between London and Truro in Cornwall are available via www.nationalexpress.com
Browse the latest collections from Filson via www.filson.com.