Lying between the Chetwood on the west and the Weather Hills on the east were the Midgewater Marshes, a deserted wetland. In early October IIIA 3018, Strider led his hobbit companions into the marshes in order to leave the Great East-West Road behind them and avoid the Black Riders pursuing them. The hobbits found the marshes to be very unpleasant: the paths between the boggy pools shifted dangerously and the whole area was home to viciously biting midges and abominable cricket-like insects that Sam named Neekerbreekers for their incessant, maddening chirping.
The Rangers of the North travel to and fro throughout Eriador, but even they largely avoid the unpleasant Midgewater. Yet this Ranger occasionally camps in the marshes and knows them well, picking safe paths through the reedy pools and hunting the small game of the fens and bogs. At times, he visits the village of Bree, three days to the west, and though the Bree-folk are distrustful of the Rangers, he is sometimes approached by the villagers for help in finding kith or kin who have gone missing in the marshes. He is seen here clad for a foray into the Midgewater, with tall thick boots and a mud-coloured cloak and hood. He wears a mask over his nose and mouth, for the terrible clouds of biting midges swarm thickly about the face. To the uninitiated, the marshes may appear to swallow all traces of those lost within, but the bent blades of reeds and disturbed tussocks of grass tell many secrets to our Ranger. If a Bree-lander or one of the Little Folk of Staddle have lost their way among the shifting pools, the marsh-tracker will surely find them and bring them to safety.
I think that Ranger outfits are one of the most popular types of outfit themes seen in-game. There are lots of pieces to support a Ranger-inspired look, and they’re a lot of fun to put together. This one came about because I really wanted to (finally) find some kind of satisfying use for these Burglar leggings, which I find to be a really nice cosmetic, but somewhat awkward to use. I’m really happy with the green-and-brown colour scheme they helped to create in this outfit, which seemed perfect to showcase in the Midgewater Marshes. This area is not extremely important to the overall story in The Lord of the Rings, but like so many things in Tolkien, there’s more to it than just a name on the map. In his Guide to the Names in The Lord of the Rings, Tolkien noted that “Midgewater” is a translation of the Icelandic name Mývatn, which is described in Hrafnkel’s Saga (and is also a real place, a lake surrounded by wetlands, in Iceland today). The Midgewater Marshes also bear a certain resemblance to a lake described in Layamon’s Brut, “a strange lake, set in Middle-earth, with marsh and with reed… nickers bathe in it…” Could it be that the nickers (a translation of Middle English nikeres) were the inspiration for the Neekerbreekers?
- Head: Lesser Secret of the West Helm (bartered — Harndirion novices quartermaster/tier 1 difficulty Burglar armour), umber
- Shoulders: Golden Host Shoulder Pads (crafted — tailor T6/Malledhrim reputation), dark green
- Back: Plain Cloak (purchased — outfit vendors), sienna
- Chest: Ceremonial Town-saver’s Jacket (bartered — skirmish camp cosmetics quartermaster/Rift cosmetic clothing – medium), Rivendell green
- Hands: Leather Gauntlets (looted — world drop/general; or purchased — Bree-town medium armour vendor), Rivendell green
- Legs: Ceremonial Shadow-stalker Leggings (bartered — skirmish camp cosmetics quartermaster/Helegrod cosmetic clothing – medium), dark green
- Feet: Ceremonial Pathfinder’s Boots (bartered — skirmish camp cosmetics quartermaster/Moria cosmetic clothing – medium), dark green
Tips: With some dye colour experimentation, you might like to try this outfit with the Makeshift Ranger Mask (bartered — skirmish camp cosmetics quartermaster/cosmetic items; or purchased — LOTRO Store) or with the Fine Grey Company Hood (quest reward — epic  Volume 3, Book 5, Chapter 1: Separate Ways – Corunir). The boots in this outfit have the same appearance as the boots from the other level 58 Moria instance cluster medium armour sets.
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