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Anyone in to Wild Camping

wheel

LE
I was in the Highlands at the weekend on a cycle tour - staying in hotels, I should add, because that's the way I roll.
There really are issues with campers stopping at the side of the road, setting up a tent, starting a fire and leaving a pile of gash. The road along the South side of Loch Tummel was an absolute nightmare for this, and I can understand why the locals are getting a bit hot under the collar.

It's not my understanding of wild camping. I don't think anyone really has a problem with proper wild camping, where folks head into the boondocks and camp, leaving no trace behind. Pulling your car off to the side of the road and building a fire that wouldn't look out of place in East Belfast on the 12th isn't that.
Pictures on the BBC do not make the place look swamped.
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Fang_Farrier

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
I was in the Highlands at the weekend on a cycle tour - staying in hotels, I should add, because that's the way I roll.
There really are issues with campers stopping at the side of the road, setting up a tent, starting a fire and leaving a pile of gash. The road along the South side of Loch Tummel was an absolute nightmare for this, and I can understand why the locals are getting a bit hot under the collar.

It's not my understanding of wild camping. I don't think anyone really has a problem with proper wild camping, where folks head into the boondocks and camp, leaving no trace behind. Pulling your car off to the side of the road and building a fire that wouldn't look out of place in East Belfast on the 12th isn't that.

It is a shame that a fe
Due to all of the restrictions, we're probably going to do one of the Scottish hiking routes this year (we had planned more trekking in Belgium; then planned camp-site camping in France; now going to stick with UK). Most likely West Highland Way.

We'll be using a 3 man Forclaz Ultralite for two people - 2.3kg and it's one of the standard trekking tents from Decathlon. Here's a picture of it in 2018, stealth camping along the GR16 in Belgium.

Not a bad tent - think only paid around 200 for it, rolls up small and used it quite a bit with no problems. The back also has a star gazing patch (not pictured) that has been removed on the newer version I think, but quite nice when camping alone in the middle of nowhere.

View attachment 496275

Although a bit big for true stealth camping!

View attachment 496277

If things are back to normal next Easter, we are thinking of doing the GR16 again, but in a single trip - and thinking of getting a hammock tent as I hear they are a bit better for stealth camping.

I would suggest the Great Glen Way over the WHW.

Usually slightly less busy.

And for more distance and a bigger challenge the John O'Groats trail.
 
I would suggest the Great Glen Way over the WHW.
The midge forecast around most of Scotland is currently quite good with the exception of Fort William, Kinlochleven etc. It would be a shame to complete the West Highland Way in a cloud of little flying bastards.
 

Ravers

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
I've seen campsites where they left everything behind, tents, air mattress, duvets, BBQ, clothing, lights, the receipt says they just bought the lot from Argos used it for two nights pissed off and left it there.

Retailers now do “festival packs” that are basically designed to be disposable. For as low as 20 quid I’ve seen a pack that contains a tent, 2 doss bags and 2 roll mats.

At that price it’s hardly worth lugging the stuff home.
 
Retailers now do “festival packs” that are basically designed to be disposable. For as low as 20 quid I’ve seen a pack that contains a tent, 2 doss bags and 2 roll mats.

At that price it’s hardly worth lugging the stuff home.
I can understand that mentality at a festival - people have paid several hundred quid to get in, all the food and drink is overpriced, almost everyone is off their tits on booze and drugs. The festival site will, at the end if not before, be a massive pile of mud with some ******* disgusting portaloos. If it's already covered in shit (metaphorically and literally) why not leave a bit more crap behind?

I'm not saying I agree with it, just that I can understand the thought process.

Surely the whole point of wild camping is to get out somewhere that's unspoiled and beautiful. I can't understand the mindset of "I've found somewhere stunning, I think I'll leave it looking like a landfill site and **** it up for everyone else". Selfish cnuts.
 
I would suggest the Great Glen Way over the WHW.

Usually slightly less busy.

And for more distance and a bigger challenge the John O'Groats trail.

We will look into that as both routes look really good. The other half just suggested WHW because I think some of her friends have done it, but the idea of it being packed with people is a bit off putting.

Edit: Just suggested it to the other half who is currently at the Edinburgh flat - she loves the photos of the GGW, so we'll be doing that - thanks for the suggestion.
 
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Retailers now do “festival packs” that are basically designed to be disposable. For as low as 20 quid I’ve seen a pack that contains a tent, 2 doss bags and 2 roll mats.

At that price it’s hardly worth lugging the stuff home.
If it's worth lugging at all there should be well advertised and convenient collection points so it can be sent somewhere for cleaning, patching, repacking and made ready for emergency relief kits. Somehow I doubt many festival goers will get the message though.
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If it's worth lugging at all there should be well advertised and convenient collection points so it can be sent somewhere for cleaning, patching, repacking and made ready for emergency relief kits. Somehow I doubt many festival goers will get the message though.
View attachment 496313
Sounds like quite a few go to Calais....
 
I think a lot of it is education. First time out with a gang of mates yonks ago, I cut and rolled back a turf, lined the hole with stones, set a small fierce fire to cook upon and for fire telly. I asked that, in the morning after I'd got rid of the stones and rolled back the turf, they piss on it and pour any unwanted fluids on it. One of them visited the location a few weeks later, nothing to see and couldn't place where the fire had been.

Word got around between them, now that's what they all do even when I'm not there, and they're proud of it. They used to build BFO bonfires before, trying to burn all their shit in them. None of us are conservationists, far from it, they're just doing what they've now learned and they're also taking all their own shit, and maybe somebody else's, away to a high street rubbish bin too.

Some people can't be taught, but many have never been given the opportunity to learn. In my red light area, locals know that the ritual slaughter of a goat from a tripod in the street just gets cleaned up by the council, they don't consider who does it or why. If you've just escaped from Govan for a night or two, you might not understand either.
 
I can understand that mentality at a festival - people have paid several hundred quid to get in, all the food and drink is overpriced, almost everyone is off their tits on booze and drugs. The festival site will, at the end if not before, be a massive pile of mud with some ******* disgusting portaloos. If it's already covered in shit (metaphorically and literally) why not leave a bit more crap behind?

I'm not saying I agree with it, just that I can understand the thought process.

Surely the whole point of wild camping is to get out somewhere that's unspoiled and beautiful. I can't understand the mindset of "I've found somewhere stunning, I think I'll leave it looking like a landfill site and **** it up for everyone else". Selfish cnuts.
The mentality of people at a festival going woah Jeremy Corbin could no doubt form many a thesis...
 

Ravers

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
Ravers should look at finding somewhere on his vast estate to set up a small exclusive camp site where pitches are not within line of site of each other , facilities are limited to composting toilet and water tap and the overriding ethos is silence ....... I reckon he could charge a premium and it would still have a wait list as this is what most claiming to wild camp desire.....

The idea has certainly crossed my mind a few times but there are a lot of reasons why I haven’t bothered.

1) Massively busy with a farm, hotel, 2 pubs and an actual full time job.

2) The bureaucratic hoops to jump through in changing farmland or commercial woodland into a campsite are fairly big and numerous.

3) As above, nearly all our land is either farmed or used for commercial forestry. We also have shooting and fishing here. Any other venture would have to be carefully managed around what we’re currently doing on this land.

4) All the best camping spots would require a fair amount of groundworks. I know people want the wilderness, but having to machete your way through 100m of chest high stinging nettles to get to your pitch is taking the piss a little. At the very least I’d need to lay some paths and build a bridge across a river.

5) I’d have to put in some proper parking, the ground is sodden for 3/4 of the year and I don’t really fancy towing people out every day. I’d also have to fence it off to stop cows and goats wrecking cars.

6) We have the lakes, Pennines and Yorkshire Dales on our doorstep. There are better places to wild camp nearby that are free. I don’t think the uptake would be that great.

7) Commercially it’s not really viable. I doubt people would pay more than 20 odd quid a night to pitch a small tent in the middle of nowhere. The general management of a camping business, website, insurance, booking system etc. groundworks and loss of income from not using that space for farming, would outweigh any benefits.

8) Finally and quite selfishly, I really like having this spot to myself. My kids play here. I don’t mind the odd mate or arrser coming up to stay every now and then, but having strangers here all the time isn’t something I want to do. We’ve already opened the big family home to the public as a hotel, it’s nice to keep our little bit of paradise to ourselves.
380D2842-C543-4FCC-A46C-DB24D825B562.jpeg
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09035E56-CD6A-49A6-A25E-96171A393302.jpeg
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A5AD18DB-F193-4A09-957F-FBA283183B8F.jpeg
948AF3ED-C042-4137-AA61-32BA07B894FA.jpeg
 
The idea has certainly crossed my mind a few times but there are a lot of reasons why I haven’t bothered.

1) Massively busy with a farm, hotel, 2 pubs and an actual full time job.

2) The bureaucratic hoops to jump through in changing farmland or commercial woodland into a campsite are fairly big and numerous.

3) As above, nearly all our land is either farmed or used for commercial forestry. We also have shooting and fishing here. Any other venture would have to be carefully managed around what we’re currently doing on this land.

4) All the best camping spots would require a fair amount of groundworks. I know people want the wilderness, but having to machete your way through 100m of chest high stinging nettles to get to your pitch is taking the piss a little. At the very least I’d need to lay some paths and build a bridge across a river.

5) I’d have to put in some proper parking, the ground is sodden for 3/4 of the year and I don’t really fancy towing people out every day. I’d also have to fence it off to stop cows and goats wrecking cars.

6) We have the lakes, Pennines and Yorkshire Dales on our doorstep. There are better places to wild camp nearby that are free. I don’t think the uptake would be that great.

7) Commercially it’s not really viable. I doubt people would pay more than 20 odd quid a night to pitch a small tent in the middle of nowhere. The general management of a camping business, website, insurance, booking system etc. groundworks and loss of income from not using that space for farming, would outweigh any benefits.

8) Finally and quite selfishly, I really like having this spot to myself. My kids play here. I don’t mind the odd mate or arrser coming up to stay every now and then, but having strangers here all the time isn’t something I want to do. We’ve already opened the big family home to the public as a hotel, it’s nice to keep our little bit of paradise to ourselves.
 

Ravers

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
If it's worth lugging at all there should be well advertised and convenient collection points so it can be sent somewhere for cleaning, patching, repacking and made ready for emergency relief kits. Somehow I doubt many festival goers will get the message though.
View attachment 496313

The stuff is so cheap and shit that it costs more to collect and clean than to just replace it.

A few years back I was on the bar in one of our pubs. It was the Tuesday after Kendal Calling (a music festival that is held up here).

These two blokes walked in for some scran and a pint. They looked like they’d just emerged from the trenches. Covered in mud and shit with haunted looks in their eyes.

We got chatting and it turned out they were the clean up crew for the festival. Their wages were **** all but they got to keep whatever shit they found on site.

By all accounts camping gear is to be avoided as it’s either completely destroyed after a weekend in the field or been spewed / shat in.

The real Brucey bonuses were found in misplaced wallets, phones, jewellery etc.

Plus enough discarded beers to keep you going for a year.
 

Ravers

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
Due to all of the restrictions, we're probably going to do one of the Scottish hiking routes this year (we had planned more trekking in Belgium; then planned camp-site camping in France; now going to stick with UK). Most likely West Highland Way.

We'll be using a 3 man Forclaz Ultralite for two people - 2.3kg and it's one of the standard trekking tents from Decathlon. Here's a picture of it in 2018, stealth camping along the GR16 in Belgium.

Not a bad tent - think only paid around 200 for it, rolls up small and used it quite a bit with no problems. The back also has a star gazing patch (not pictured) that has been removed on the newer version I think, but quite nice when wild camping in the middle of nowhere.

View attachment 496275

Although a bit big for true stealth camping!

View attachment 496277

If things are back to normal next Easter, we are thinking of doing the GR16 again, but in a single trip - and thinking of getting a hammock tent as I hear they are a bit better for stealth camping.

My thread on the WHW here:


Did it 3 years back and had a fantastic time. We didn’t camp though. Stayed in B&Bs and hostels and got a courier company to ferry all our shit between stops.

Only cost 150 quid (split between 3 of us) for a weeks worth of ferrying kit and a lift from Fort William back to Glasgow at the end.
 
My thread on the WHW here:


Did it 3 years back and had a fantastic time. We didn’t camp though. Stayed in B&Bs and hostels and got a courier company to ferry all our shit between stops.

Only cost 150 quid (split between 3 of us) for a weeks worth of ferrying kit and a lift from Fort William back to Glasgow at the end.


We both like wild camping - usually with a hotel at the start and the end of our trips - but that sounds like a good deal.

We're going to do the GGW now, but I'll read through the rest of your thread, the start of it is really interesting.
 
Finally and quite selfishly, I really like having this spot to myself. My kids play here. I don’t mind the odd mate or arrser coming up to stay every now and then, but having strangers here all the time isn’t something I want to do. We’ve already opened the big family home to the public as a hotel, it’s nice to keep our little bit of paradise to ourselves.

TBH the comment was a bit tongue in cheek......

Like you we have our favourite secluded camp areas where we can leave kit , have a stone built BBQ type thing and us blokes can play silly buggers without anyone else seeing ...or can camp with kids etc ..... we are very lucky .

I don't blame you not wanting anyone around and going by the antics and behaviour a localish campsite has endured recently well founded .
 
TBH the comment was a bit tongue in cheek......

Like you we have our favourite secluded camp areas where we can leave kit , have a stone built BBQ type thing and us blokes can play silly buggers without anyone else seeing ...or can camp with kids etc ..... we are very lucky .

I don't blame you not wanting anyone around and going by the antics and behaviour a localish campsite has endured recently well founded .


I think that's also one of the draws of wild camping - no screaming kids, loud groups etc etc.
 

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