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Considerate Wild Camping

My general advice about the legality and rules for sleeping wild are that if you are polite and friendly, spend only one night in a place, camp discreetly, and leave absolutely no trace when you depart, then you’ll be fine.

The next step of responsible wild camping would include the advice always offered in books and articles, yet in reality utterly impractical: ask permission from the landowner. Trespassing is naughty, of course. (Although, there was once a time, long ago, when rivers and woods and hills were not ‘owned’.) But annoying landowners really is a terrible thing to do if you care about wild camping being allowed / tolerated. So always bear that in mind.

Far more useful, in my opinion, is to take responsibility for your own actions. Pay attention to Natural EnglandNational Parks, AONB’s, SSSI’s, Open Access and CROW land. This map is helpful for delving deeper into land use. Also bird nesting season and salmon spawning times will impact where and when you can bivvy.

Bear in mind that as we destroy nature, we destroy ourselves. Or, more simply, if you go sleep in the wild because you love it, but then leave rubbish and fire circles and wreck the place then I may be forced to momentarily shrug off my mild-mannered mask and punch you in the face.

As always I would welcome comments, below, from those of you who know more than me about matters like this!

Una validiores sumus.

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Comments

  1. I recently cycled in England, from London to Paris then Italy – my country. In my whole life as cycletourist I’ve been always a wild-camp-addict. England was gorgeous, but I never had as there so many-many-many difficulties to find a spot for my tent. Fences everywhere !!! Miles of fences and warnings: “Keep off”, “Stay away”, “Don’t let your dog shit near my property”, “You Are Being Watched” (The Big Brother paranoia). It’s like an obsession: “this is mine, piss off”. Maybe it depends by the density of population. It was really a challenge to find a camping spot at the end of every day. But neverthless I did enjoy UK, people were friendly.
    Selected photos at:
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/shutterlupus/

    There are photos of Etna and Sicily, also.

    Reply
    • Alastair Posted

      It’s true, sadly.
      America is the only place I’ve been that is worse. And people have guns there too making taking a risk a bit scarier!

      Reply
  2. I recently went for a walk in lady clough forest in the peak district & left feeling depressed because there was so much rubbish left behind it ruined the experience that is not how it should be you should be walking in nature feeling refreshed im sure its just a minority but still saddened me

    Reply
  3. And there is another problem we have in Canada and the USA. Camping out has its dangers for we have raccoons, skunks, porcupines, coyotes, and bears in most parts, plus cougars and wolves in some parts. When I hike in the company of my dog, these challenges get magnified that much.

    Reply

 
 

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