They are tiny, cheap, take up little space and are incredibly versatile. A few humble cable ties can be real life-savers.

I discovered how useful they can be when cycling. They could attach items to bike frames; secure broken spokes from flapping around; fit lights and mudguards – instant rescue.

When walking and camping they are equally versatile.

  • Fix items to rucksacks
  • Replace damaged fastenings
  • Secure or shorten guys and cords
  • Fasten clothing when zips and buttons have failed in cold wet weather
  • Anchor gaiters when those pesky rubber straps break
  • Hang lamps in tents
  • Lash poles together
  • Join tarps
  • Substitute for broken laces
  • Fix broken belts
  • I even know somebody who secured a flapping boot sole that had come adrift

Stick half a dozen in the bottom of your rucksack – just in case.

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