Preparing for the Pennine Way: A Wild Camp on Dartmoor

James WerbCamping, Hiking1 Comment

Dartmoor Wild Camp

It’s funny how little time I spent on Dartmoor growing up living only half an hour or so away from it’s wild borders. We’d take the occasional trip up there, usually the popular walk up Haytor from the neighbouring car park, but I had little sense of what lay beyond.

Walking didn’t really appeal, even when the opportunity to train and take part in the Ten Tors Challenge at school came along. Many of my friends took part (though never completed the challenge due to the outbreak of foot and mouth disease) but I never felt the sense that I was missing out on anything.

Only more recently have I spent any considerable time exploring the rugged landscape fuelled by a desire to catch up on lost time. Preparing to walk the Pennine Way this summer has provided the perfect excuse to spend more time criss-crossing the wild playground in my backyard.

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MSR Hubba Hubba NX: First Impressions

James WerbOutdoor Equipment Reviews3 Comments

MSR Hubba Hubba NX

Whenever I’m looking to buy any new item of outdoor equipment, it usually involves extensive research. I can spend hours pouring over reviews, and speaking to other outdoor enthusiasts. No one wants to make the wrong decision especially on gear that you’ve not only paid hard earned cash for but also could be trusting your life to on an extended trip in the backcountry.

Back in August I was in that familiar position thinking ‘I need a new tent’. I’ve bought quite a few over the years but I find with experience my requirements getting more specific. When I started it was, “I need a tent”, but now it’s more, “I need a 2 person lightweight tent, that’s freestanding and robust”. In fact that was pretty much the exact criteria I had for my last purchase.

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How To Go On Your First Wild Camping Adventure

James WerbCamping1 Comment

Wild Camping

There’s no doubt, camping and being outside is great. But why would you want to give up the luxuries of staying at a camp site? At the bare minimum you usually access to clean running water, toilets and a shower.

That’s all very well and good but you’re not exactly out in the wilds are you?

Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy car camping and sometimes it’s easier to stay at a camp site for a quick getaway. What I don’t like is being woken up by screaming kids at 4am and having a beautiful view spoiled by a 16 man palace with awnings, radio antenna and a carport that makes the Taj Mahal look small.

For me, part of being outside is getting away from others and being more closely connected with the natural environment. You just can’t do that when you’re at a camp site.

So, what’s the answer?

A little thing called wild camping. Getting off the beaten track and heading away from civilisation. The clue is in the name. It’s ‘wild’ camping. There’s no shower blocks or washing up stations. Just you and nature.

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