Walking Gear

Wearing the right clothes

Country Walking Magazine

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We’ve been asked by several visitors to Rookhope to recommend an ideal walking shoe and boot for walks in the Pennines. In reality, there are so many which are excellent from several makers that its hard to make a definitive recommend that is ideal for everyone.

The main thing to remember is the old saying that “there’s no such thing as bad weather, just the wrong clothes”! So dress appropriately – making sureyou are dry and warm enough (not too warm) is key to a fantastic walking experience.

Don’t forget that in the summer months you’ll need to add sun cream and a hat to your wardrobe!

So here are a few suggestions for appropriate garments you will find useful for a walking tour of upper Weardale and the surrounding countryside. The useful list at the bottom of the page gives links to some of the main retailers.

Boots and Shoes

Go OutdoorsYour footwear is a key piece of equipment and comfort is paramount, so we’d always recommend to try a few pairs on first before buying. You’ll need a different spec for road and path walking to what you’d need for open moorland so its important to  choose the right equipment for you.

Brasher Fellmaster from Field and Trek

If you want to take advantage of the wonderful open spaces of the North Pennine moorland, choose boots with good ankle support and ideally waterproof and breathable – with Gore-Tex or similar. That way you’ll keep dry from any bogs or wet land and also avoid sweat building up around your feet.socks from Field & Trek

Couple those with good high performance socks which will help with wicking any sweat moisture away from your skin.

Make sure you break in new walking boots before any serious long walks in them.  Use them for a couple of weeks before your trip to Weardale, if that will be the first real walking in them and progressively increase the length of time your wear the boots.


For any outdoor activities you’ll need the right outerwear to keep you warm and dry in all weathers. Think layers with wicking underwear to keep your dry, and lightweight fleece materials. Waterproof overtrousers and even gaiters in heavy weather are amazing in ensuring comfort when hiking.

The Weardale Gansey is an ideal jumper and knitters can buy the pattern online from the North Pennines Wool blog.

Campri Walking poleWalking Sticks, etc

There are plenty of suppliers of ordinary sticks and gear for Nordic walking, so check some of these websites out.


The basic tool for any outdoor activity is a detailed map of the area and the classic Ordnance Survey sheets are the perfect choice. You can buy direct from the OS Shop or from Amazon here.

GPRS & Technology

To avoid getting lost at all costs, these are the ideal walkers companions and can help you in the most extreme of conditions, also available from the OS Shop. As with those in cars however you must use carefully in low visibility and ensure you don’t blindly follow an appropriate route!

Our Shopping Partners

Here are some of the more popular retailers of quality walking and outdoor gear:

  • Bikes Direct can help with anything from repair parts to a wide selection of new bikes all available online.
  • Blacks is one of the best-known outdoor retailer of outdoor kit in stores and online.
  • Craghoppers gear is developed by Yorkshire climbing enthusiasts, originally for a successful Everest climb!
  • Field & Trek are one of the UK’s leading outdoor specialists.
  • GoOutdoors – promise to beat any other retailer on price.
  • Millets
  • North Face, based in the North East
  • Ordnance Survey is the premium supplier of mapping and GPS equipment, all of which you can buy online.
  • Outdoor Gear sell just what they say, much of it at discount prices.

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