Updated: Jul 31, 2019
Camping is as old as the hills themselves. Early man as we all know, lived in caves, then rudimentary huts while hunting and scavenging for survival. Everybody knows how to camp, right. It is in our genes. Well no, it isn’t. As with any tribe, the way the new generation of children learn the traditions and knowledge is passed down by the elders. Some individuals do not have that foundation of teaching. Some people are inexperienced, a little unconfident, or out of practice, this is where we come in as Adventure Accessories.
Between us, we have been camping since before we could walk with family and have been members of Brownies, Guides, Scouting, Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme, and the Territorial Army. They are all outdoor skills based training. We have over 40 years experience to draw upon and share with you.
In the digital era we now live in, more of these traditional map reading, hunter/gatherer, survival skills are no longer needed. We have tech to guide us, shop for us, keep us safe, warm and secure. Do we really need to cling onto these old skills. Need, perhaps not. Want, absolutely.
What is Wild Camping?
If you think camping you are likely to conjure up images of tents, air beds, tables chairs, gadgets for cooking, cleaning, washing. A pretty little campsite, with marked out, manicured lawned pitches and easy access to the shower block. Wild Camping is none of this. Other than maybe a gadget of a Jet boil kettle and possibly a fire lighting kit. Wild Camping to Mr AA is sleeping under the stars as close to nature as possible. He does not take a tent, just a sleeping bag and a tarp. Even if nighttime temperatures can be very cold and Wales is renowned for its rain! I prefer a tent and sleeping bag, but am happy to go off grid and reconnect-with-nature with a leave no trace ethos.
Wild Camping is all about being unplugged and free. Many of us work in an office surrounded by PCs, Laptops, Mobile Phones, and all manner of electrical items, including the air conditioning and artificial lighting that genuinely gets ‘under the skin’ mentally. More often than you might think.
Wild Camping is about about getting away from the 9-5. The excitement of being challenged and tested by nature. Freed from ‘the clock’, time slows and changes shape. Time becomes measured by next meal stop, next water source, next campsite and next awesome view.
However I will stipulate that we do carry a mobile phone with us, for emergency use. With GPS positioning enabled as part of hubs safety regime. Especially when trekking alone (or with the dog). He has to manage type 1 diabetes and we discuss that in our post Camping with Diabetes.
Leave No Trace
Wild Camping is not strictly legal in most areas of the UK, with a couple of exceptions. Scotland has a freedom to roam bylaw and Dartmoor allows wild camping. However, wild camping is usually tolerated so long as you obey the countryside code, arrive after dusk, leave at dawn and respect the leave no trace ethos.
We would always recommend you seek landowners permission before setting up camp, so that wild camping can continue to be enjoyed by everyone. We also advise against open fires, unless on land with express permission do so, using pre-dug fire pits.
Freedom to Roam
The right to roam and wild camp is hotly debated and in the majority of areas, it is recommended that permission is always sought from the landowner. As with any outdoor activity, consideration and respect for nature is paramount, to be able to enjoy our mountains, rivers, lowland and coasts for many more generations to come.
How to Wild Camp
Shelter - Tent, tarpaulin, motorhome. We make no judgement over comfort.
Bedding - If you are backpacking you will want lightweight. We suggest you go for a season colder than you plan for.
Stove - We use a JETBOIL ZIP. Lightweight, compact and quick to boil.
Food - You can buy army style ration packs online or Wayfayrer meals that can be bought in most large camping equipment shops. Noodles, soup, easy to carry, one pot meals.
Water is heavy to carry, even if you stay close to a good clean water source we would recommend boiling any natural water to be sure it is safe to drink.
Spare clothes and waterproof trousers and jacket.
Socks. Lots of socks, take more pairs than you think you will need.
Test your kit BEFORE you go. Practice setting up your shelter before leaving. At least make a brew with the stove beforehand. Know how to safely use your kit.
You can find lots more advice, tips and tricks for all things wild camping by joining our
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Over to You...
You have a wealth of knowledge and experience too and we would love to learn from you and hear all about your adventures, tips and tricks. Get in contact and join the discussion by commenting below or tagging us on social media using #AdventureWild.
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