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Meet Kate, Danny & Katie – Unpacking the Adventure Waterproof Backpack v2.0

Posted by Lydia Burdett

This mountain-biking, trail-riding trio – spouses Kate (@itskateoc) and Danny O’Callaghan (@itsdannyoc), and their good friend Katie Houghton (@katieridesbikes) – put our new improved Adventure Waterproof Backpack v2.0 to the test in the Lake District last December, as the MTB action heroes of our launch photoshoot. 

We asked them about their adventures in the hills – and our extraordinary life-proof rucksack, the upgraded Adventure Waterproof Backpack v2.0

What is it you love about mountain biking? And can you share any tips about what you should take with you for a day on the hills?

Kate: Mountain biking is my go-to escape, especially during times of adversity – a release from the pressures and stresses of life, time to truly switch off and focus on nothing but the trails ahead. It’s opened up the world to me, exploring and adventuring all over the world by mountain bike, experiencing culture and taking in scenery you wouldn’t necessarily on the main path, the thrill of the descents, the sense of achievement on the ascents, pushing yourself harder than you thought you were capable of. But most of all what I love about mountain biking is the community, the sense of belonging, the support and the encouragement, our crew makes it something extra-special.

The essentials I take with me – layers, many snacks, water, first aid kit and a sense of adventure! 

Katie: Being able to explore the hills on two wheels gives me a sense of adventure and accomplishment. The physical demand of the climbs, the thrill of the descents and the awe-inspiring views in-between. Whether alone or sharing these moments with the great friends I’ve met through riding, nothing beats it. 

Essentials I pack are: snacks, snacks and more snacks! Plus hydration, tools for fixing mechanicals, a waterproof, plus extra layers in winter.

You’re all lucky enough to live in the Lake District and are spoiled for choice on places to go adventuring. So what makes a perfect weekend for you?

Kate: One of my favourite things to do is a dawn raid, riding / carrying my bike up a hill to catch the sunrise. It’s hard to put into words the effect of the freedom from interference whilst sitting in silence watching the day come alive, a calmness unmatched by anything else.

The perfect weekend for me would start with a dawn raid, a decent trail back down for breakfast, then a chilled paddleboard session for sunset, some good food and great company, a few beers in the evening and then another adventure in the hills the next day! In short – lots of time outside with pals, good food and adventure.

Katie: Perfect weekend? If the forecast plays ball for a sunrise adventure, I’d get up early for an ascent in the dark to reach the summit and watch the sunrise, a bonus would be with an inversion too. Followed by some pub grub. The next day I’d enjoy some forest laps for a good mix of trails and terrain. Teamed with a night in the van for the added adventure.

In your expert opinion, what’s the new Adventure Waterproof Backpack like for: mountain biking (Danny), trail running (Katie) and van life (Kate)?

Danny: It’s ideal for long winter rides or bike-packing adventures – the new Adventure Waterproof Backpack has plenty of space so I can fit all my spare clothing and provisions in, keeping it secure and dry. It would be a great addition for a multi-day bike-packing ride, packed with warm layers for colder evenings around the tent.

Katie: The new Adventure Waterproof Backpack would be ideal for winter weather trail running, to keep those extra layers needed for mountain summits nice and dry. It would also be great for a run-swim as the size of the pack is ideal for packing those luxury items like a Quick Dry Change Robe, swim socks and gloves for winter swims.

Kate: The new Adventure Waterproof Backpack is great for van life adventures, ideal for everything we might do on a van trip: biking, hiking, swimming, paddleboarding etc. It’s a great winter pack – fully waterproof with plenty of space, comfy back protection too.

Why is it important for you to have kit and equipment that’s designed with the end user in mind?

Kate: It’s important to me to have the right kit for comfort, functionality and ease. When you have long days in the saddle or hiking – whatever it is you might be doing – if something isn’t the right fit or doesn’t feel comfortable, it can cause a lot of issues and distract you from the day. A backpack rubbing on your shoulders or bouncing around isn’t only annoying, but if you end up with friction cuts or something that’s going to cause you problems… 

Katie: Kit needs to work for the desired sport and weather conditions, performance is key. For example, a pack that stays in place while you’re riding or running and keeps your extra layers dry in wet conditions is ideal.

What draws you to spending time in the outdoors?

Kate: Connecting with the outdoors is so powerful; the scenery, the elements, the adventure. The calmness it brings, and the clarity it brings – when my world is feeling like it’s spinning a little too fast, I take myself outdoors and slow it all down. It’s an escape, a place to make decisions in the peace and quiet. All the sights, the sunrise, the sunset, the movement in the clouds, the sounds and smells, the nature, the wildlife! Everything about it brings me joy, it’s impossible not to feel lighter (even in the horrendous weather, the joy just comes a little later… I promise.) I’m a big believer in everyday adventures – you don’t have to be the best, the strongest, or an elite athlete to enjoy the benefits. Of course, the wilder you go the bigger the impact, but a simple walk along the local canal is perfectly fine to connect you with nature, you just have to take the time to look around.

Katie: The adventure, the views, sense of achievement and happiness it brings. And the friends you meet along the way. 


Kate & Danny: Do you have any top tips for couples who are looking to ramp up their time in the outdoors together? Why is it important to your relationship?

Our adventures around the world and in our daily lives have made our relationship so much stronger – and we have so much fun, spending our time together sharing incredible experiences, enjoying all the benefits of the outdoors, laughing together (and at each other). The more we do the more we want to do. It’s made us so much closer, we’re the best of friends and a great team.

We both share a love of the outdoors and we do most things together, but we understand that we also need those solo adventures. So we give each other the space and time for that – it’s the same for adventures with friends.

When we adventure together, we make sure it’s something that’s suitable for us both. For example, Danny is much stronger and more confident on the bikes so he can ride harder, and faster, but we adjust the rides we do together so we can both enjoy them!

We also try new things together so we’re both learning and failing together. We push each other and help each other to achieve. And sometimes we have sense of humour failures during our adventures together – and that’s OK; you’ll laugh about it eventually.

Learn more about the upgraded Adventure Waterproof Backpack v2.0 and see Kate, Danny & Katie in action via our Look Book.