To purists, this is the only form of camping: pitching your tent in the wild, you, nature, the stars and as far away from human habitation as possible.
What is wild camping?
Camping outside commercial, organised camp sites. Pitching your tent in the countryside, in the place of your choosing.
Is it legal?
Yes and no. In England, and Wales, all land is owned by someone, or some organisation. Strictly, you have to ask the owner’s permission to camp on their land.
However, in remote places, if you follow the wild campers’ code of conduct (see below), you should be able to get away with it (but note that the Forestry Commission and National Trust do not permit any wild camping).
In Scotland, things are different: under the Scottish Outdoor Access Code, you are allowed to pitch a tent in the countryside, provided that you’re camping in small numbers, in lightweight style, staying only 2-3 days in one place, away from buildings and roads, and not in enclosed fields of crops or livestock.
My first wilderness camping cycle journey takes me to Bodmin Moor.
On this occasion, my first and only wild camping location is a field on South Penquite Farm. Well nearly wild camping, as it also has a shower block. One must start into these things slowly!
The next stop is a more official camp site near Tintagel. So not worthy of being in this post!
After my short two night tour round Bodmin Moor, I stretch myself to circumnavigating Dartmoor.
I’m still with my first bicycle touring tent, the Vango Nitro 200 + .
At times wilderness camping is not so wilderness. As seen here with the use of a backpackers garden and yummy pub food down the road. The Stone Barn.
But I’m soon keen to perfect my wilderness camping locations.
All amenities provided for here, a stream! And, I also have the farmers permission, as he directed me to this location. Nice farmer!
Dartmoor is one of a very few locations in England that you can legally wild camp.
First use of my new MSR Hubba Hubba tent. Once again back onto Bodmin Moor. The Weekend.
Wilderness camping code
Do not camp within sight of dwellings or on livestock land.
Ask permission from the owner if you think you may be on private land.
If the owner asks you to leave, do so, politely and quickly.
Do not light a campfire without the owner’s express permission.
Never urinate or defecate near a water source.
Do not wash with soap, shampoo or detergent in streams (unless it’s natural soap).
Bury your poo with a trowel (but not tampons: animals dig them up). A 6 inch hole is good. And if possible place a log or large stone over the soil. This will deter any further attention from animals.
Take all rubbish with you (even other people’s).
Only leave flattened grass.
This is a useful site for further information regarding the legalities. Bush Craft in the UK
Myself, I just use good-ol-common-sense!
You can click on each photo for an enhanced Flickr view or the above Flickr slideshow for further photos for this post.