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Outdoor Stories: Alex and Jodie from Páramo HQ

Between them, HQ staff members Alex Beaumont and Jodie Clarke have an impressive 37 years of Páramo experience under their belts, so we thought it was about time we gave them a little overdue airtime in one of our newsletters. Alex is our patient Operations Director who knows everything there is to know about the business, whilst Jodie, as Head of Sales, has a real flair for what makes our retailers and customers tick. As befits a Páramo employee, they spend much of their spare time enjoying the great outdoors and we asked them to give us an insight into the kit they are never without.

Meet Alex…

I have always enjoyed the outdoors and whilst a kayaking injury years ago has changed the sort of activities I can do, I still manage to get out and about to interesting places for weekends up in the hills.

My kit has been well focussed over the years and I can grab my pack on a Friday evening after work and head out solo or to meet some friends for a weekend of hiking and scrambling. Back in 2019, I saw the award winning Ortlieb Atrack waterproof backpack at the ISPO trade show and as I loved the uniqueness of the design and was tired of constantly battling with rain covers on my packs, I decided to buy one and try it out. I have used it ever since; in fact, I have even added a smaller one to my collection for ½ day hikes! Having a pack that is completely waterproof, carries weight extremely well through a clever back panel system, and is extremely tough and durable suits my needs perfectly.

There are some things that always have a place in my pack, a couple of torches – I carry a Ledlenser HF6R Core rechargeable headtorch as my main light and have a Ledlenser P3 Core handheld torch as a backup, which can run on AAA batteries. It is always sensible to have a spare torch in case anything goes wrong, although, thankfully, I have never needed to call on it.

Additionally, I always have a spare pair of dry socks to hand and have used the American brand, Darn Tough for some time – even before Páramo started selling them! Made from merino wool, they are extremely comfortable and long lasting.

My treat to myself for a big Birthday this year was a very special Elliot Brown Canford Mountain Rescue Edition Watch. I would love to say it was a necessary purchase, but it was definitely a want rather than a need! That said, it has already been on many adventures with me and still looks as good as the day it arrived. For every one of these watches sold, Elliott Brown donates £35 to Mountain Rescue England & Wales, a very worthy cause (and one that helped me justify my Birthday gift to myself…).

In the winter months, my go-to Páramo jacket is our Velez Evolution Smock – I find the twin zip design extremely adaptable in changing weather conditions and throughout the seasons as I do get hot, so the ventilation it offers works well for me. I always wear it over a Grid Technic or Cambia baselayer depending on the elements and activities, and always stay warm, dry and comfortable.

Meet Jodie…

Now that the clocks have changed and winter seems to have arrived, the kit I take out on weekend adventures with my family has also changed. With two young children in tow, our trips invariably end up in the woods splashing through muddy puddles before we find a good spot to rest and snack before more splashing and exploring!

My Ortlieb commuter daypack is big enough to carry everything I need for a day out, including the unnecessary toys that always seem to end up coming along with us. The roll top keeps everything dry and safe, and it has a simple yet incredibly comfortable back panel system, making it an easy piece to carry all day long. I tend to keep a 12ltr Ortlieb dry bag with it, which is great to have on hand when changing small people out of their wet and muddy clothes as it helps to keep all their dirty gear separate from the rest of my daypack contents.

Those with young children will well imagine that the speed and distance covered on an expedition is very reduced from what I was able to do 5 years ago! So, to keep myself warm, dry, and comfortable on our family adventures this winter, I will be relying on my freshly proofed Páramo Velez Jacket, Cascada II Trousers, and cosy Torres Gilet, a combination that will give me the flexibility and protection I need regardless of the weather, which means I can focus my energies on the kids. I’ll be combining this with a brand-new pair of Oboz Bridger mid-waterproof boots (I like the weight of a fabric boot and have found these very comfortable with good, grippy soles for the UK winter mud). In my bag, I’ll also pack a pair of Hestra nimbus gloves for when our walks slow to a stop for an in-depth investigation of a particular tree or rock – something that can keep the kids amused for some time, requiring me to need to keep the chill off my hands!

I am hugely grateful for my Páramo kit, and that of our partner brands’, which allows me to spend more time with my young family in the great outdoors creating long lasting memories.

All the kit detailed in Alex and Jodie’s stories, and more, is available to buy in our Brand Stores now*. Whether you are looking to treat yourself or someone else, our expert sales staff will help you find the right product for the right person for the right activity.

Don’t forget, loyalty card holders earn 10 points for every £1 spent in store. Just show your card every time you shop in person at our Wadhurst, Keswick or Marylebone Brand Stores, or quote your card number when placing an order over the phone or via email, and we’ll add your points to your account. The more Páramo points you earn, the more rewards you’ll be able to claim. What are you waiting for?

*Páramo clothing & accessories, Ledlenser torches, Hestra gloves, Hydroflasks, Altberg boots, Oboz footwear, Ortlieb backpacks, Parakito repellent, Darn Tough socks, Elliot Brown watches, Hydrapak water bottles.

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