We are lucky to live in a country where wild camping is welcomed. With the recent increase of staycations, rather than holidays abroad, and full campsites, the alternative of wild camping is a popular one, however, we need to make sure we do it responsibly. This is essential if we want to enjoy our right to roam and camp in the wild in the future.
Here are some do’s and don’ts of Wild Camping.
Seek out a beautiful spot in nature, and be prepared to spend your time in harmony with that place, and be respectful of the flora, fauna and wildlife at that location!
In Scotland we are spoilt for choice, especially if you are prepared to walk or cycle that little bit further away from cities and car parks.
In order to be able to walk to a remote spot, do only take what you need.
Carry on your back only and keep your hands free
Prioritise warm layers, weather equipment (waterproofs and suncream), water, food and the bare minimum. Make sure you can carry it all in a good, well adjusted rucksack, on your back.
Keep your hands free, in order to navigate rocks, scrambles and also to avoid hurting your body.
Technology and Planning
You might even pop your phone on flight mode, and out of your sight, to fully be able to be mindful and take in your surrounds (and also to save battery life for emergencies).
Plan your route, and know where you are going (and let someone know about your plan!). Google Maps is great as an app in case you get lost. Actual maps are also super helpful of course!
Making a Fire
If you are planning to make a fire, please do not break branches off trees, and avoid taking wood out of a woodland that might be used by local wildlife as habitat. Don’t make a fire under a tree with low hanging branches, build a stone circle around your fire to avoid it spreading. If you are at a beach, and keen to make a beach fire, use drift wood, and ideally make the fire in the tide line, to protect the wild life near the beach, as well as the dunes. Learn more about fire skills.
Please take all your litter home in a bin bag. Don’t leave anything behind. As for human waste – pee behind the bushes, and use a shovel to bury your poop. No one should ever have to see anyone else’s – at home or in the wild!
Mindfulness at Night
Enjoy the dark night sky away from city lights and count the stars – what night sky formations can you spot?
Also notice the silence, away from traffic – what nature sounds can you hear? Can you identify them all? Can you hear the wind, the waves, the trees and maybe animal sounds? Notice how peaceful it is, and enjoy a good night’s sleep in nature’s cradle.
Fancy a solo adventure but don’t know where to start?