A guest review by Mrs Muz
Washing up. I am one of the few people in this world who actually quite likes it. I find it quite peaceful.
Even if you don’t like it, you can’t ignore it when you’re camping – you have limited plates and cups with you and are far from the convenience of a dishwasher. The majority of campsites nowadays provide a washing up area of some description for you to use, but what happens when there isn’t one there? Or you’re wild camping? Easy, you turn into your parents and take a washing up bowl with you.
This is fine if you’re camping in a car, don’t mind taking the one out of your kitchen, and/or have the storage room at home for a bowl with all your other camping gubbins, but what if you’re going for the minimalist backpacker/cyclist/motorcyclist approach to camping? Enter Sea to Summit’s ‘The Little Sink’, as it’s called on the packaging, or ‘The Kitchen Sink’ as emblazoned on the product. So what’s it called, then? Confusing.
Sea to Summit has come up with a fold-away sink that packs up into a small draw-string bag, roughly the size of a standard packet of Halloumi cheese (which, if you have never tried barbequed, you really should). So it’s nice and small – always a good start.
The sink holds a generous five litres of water (that’s about the size of my head), and the packet shows it in use, with a solid rim and the water helping it hold its shape. Nice idea.
Taking it out of its bag the rim immediately sprang into shape, much like a tiny pop up tent. Sat in the middle of a field with a pile of washing up at the ready, I started to fill it with water, expectantly waiting for it to become a perfectly formed washing up receptacle. Disappointment lay ahead – instead of becoming a
nice turgid bowl of water as expected, it made a half-arsed attempt at hovering somewhere around an inch high. The water didn’t escape, it just wasn’t resembling a bowl so much as a small wobbly puddle. The second issue then became apparent – the rim proved too small to get the plates in properly.
So I ended up washing up in an inch and a half of water, dipping my sponge into it, rather than actually washing up in it as you’d expect. Not peaceful so much as… disappointing.
Back at home, with unlimited hot water available to me, I tried filling it completely. It looked much better – actually resembling the picture on the packing – much more substantial. But that’s not much use if you’re in the middle of nowhere, boiling a kettle as your source of hot water, and not wanting to waste valuable cooking fuel on washing up.
SUMMARY: The five-litre Little Sink/The Kitchen Sink is better than nothing, but isn’t practical for your average camper with limited access to hot water, and given the choice I’d be trekking across the field to a sink if there happened to be one available.