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Sandqvist meets Advanced Rock

When hiking, the journey the main event. That doesn’t mean you can’t stop and enjoy the view, however. Especially when exploring the stunning Welsh landscapes.

Recently, we challenged the Gorp Girls to partake in 3 Peak Challenge UK to field test our Hike bags. We talked to Liam Furneaux of @advanced.rock , who tagged along and documented the adventure.

Q: How did you get into hiking?

A: I got into hiking through rock climbing. I’ve climbed for 6 years with the majority of that time being outdoor climbing, so I was always searching for new spots to climb which naturally lead to going on longer walks or checking out new locations.

Q: How did advanced rock come about?

A: It actually started with a different name and I would only post videos of climbs I’ve done or scans from old climbing/walking magazines. I have always been fascinated by the outdoors and all of the gear, I’d regularly post things I liked on the stories and noticed the page starting to gain some traction, that’s when I changed the name to ‘advanced.rock’ and started to post more regularly.

Q: Hiking is very much on trend right with fashion. What makes a product stand out for you, and what do you look for when you’re buying hiking gear?

A: Firstly, it has to be functional for what I'm doing. If a piece of gear fits well and looks good at the same time then that’s a bonus. I tend to wear gear with minimal branding so I always look out for that, I love a bargain as well so I’m always searching for a good deal.

Q: You recently took part in the 3 peaks challenge, how was that?

A: The 3 peaks challenge was incredible. It’s something I’ve wanted to do for a while! I felt like the driving was the hardest bit, mentally and physically. It’s hard to sit down for that long when you’ve been out walking all day. Everyone smashed it though, solid effort from the whole team.

Q: You’ve got space for 5 things in your day hike bag, what are you packing?

A: So number one has to be my Nalgene bottle (preferably the narrow neck haha) Can’t go on any hike without water. Second has to be some kind of snacks, a banana, some trail mix and maybe a sandwich. Third would be a set of waterproofs, UK weather is so unpredictable and you don’t want to get caught out. Fourth would be my camera, that goes everywhere with me! And fifth would be a warm layer, maybe my Arc’teryx LT cerium or a lightweight fleece.

Q: We often see you out hiking in Wales, what are some of your favourite hiking spots in the UK?

A: Yeah Wales is the best, it’s only 1 hour 20 minutes from me so I’d usually hit up Pen y fan for a decent walk if I don’t want to go far. If I’m taking a longer trip then I’d probably head straight to the lake district or north Wales. You’re spoilt for choice really in either of those places!