Author Wild camping, Galloway Forest-Take 1  (Read 1200 times)

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  • Online af1-windy   gb

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    Wild camping, Galloway Forest-Take 1
    on: October 19, 2022, 04:11:16 pm
    October 19, 2022, 04:11:16 pm
    Anatres and I decided to bite the bullet and have a go at wild camping, yep, that's right, in the middle of October with rain forecast, proper bikers  :087: here's how it went.  :001:

    We knew the wet weather could be against us, but we weren’t overly worried about the cold (more on that later) there was, according to which weather site we looked at, anything from a 40 to 90% chance of precipitation.
    Despite the high probability of rain, we made the call Saturday morning, and set off, me from Leeds, Antares from Huddersfield, we met at Greggs on the outskirts of Skipton. We had a pretty good ride in the dry as far as Penrith, had fish & chips at Weatherspoon's, after all, this trip was about having fun on a budget (excluding the fecking price of fuel  :013: ) and fish and chips inc a drink at WS is about 8 quid.

    After food and drink, we hit the M6 to Carlisle, it was either that or the A6 and at least on the M6 we could make some progress without getting a speeding ticket. Actually, we went passed Carlisle and took the junction for Dumfries. We rode through a biblical storm on the M6, pretty much for the whole distance we were on it, but all our gear held up and we got through without any drama.
    Off the motorway and on to our intended destination, Loch Riecawr in the Galloway Forest, we rode some cracking roads up to and around Loch Doon. We then rode through Craigmalloch and came up against our first spanner in the works, the road to Loch Riecawr was closed for logging, Antares had a word with one of the workers, he said even if we got passed the gate, there was no way we'd be able to ride the bikes through where they were felling trees. This left us in a bit of a dilemma, we headed down a road to our left but that too was closed for logging.  :155:

    There are no roads to cut across, it was all the way back to the main road or find somewhere close to where we were at. It was raining heavy now and we were running out of daylight, Antares hoofed it down the road to check out possible sites, while I checked out if we could pitch where we were parked. He came back a few minutes later with a couple of possibilities, we rode to have a look, chose one and parked up. Sorted out where the tents would pitch up and got them off the bikes. This is when we discovered that the ground was rock hard, literally, nigh on impossible to get a peg into the ground, not such an issue for Antares because his tent is free standing and once he and his gear were in the tent, it wasn't going anywhere in the wind. However, my tent is a tunnel design and needed guy lines front and back. We managed to back my tent into some bushes and tied the lines to the branches, for the front, I manoeuvred my bike across the entrance and tied the front lines to it. We did eventually get a few pegs in and some lines on them, but it wasn't ideal.

    Anyway, tents up, gear stowed, stove out and dinner on. I'd made corned beef stew the day before and had a great big tub of the stuff, along with some crusty bread rolls. Made a nice hot coffee while the stew was heating up and sat back to consider how it was going. All in all, pretty good, despite the rain and we'd certainly already learned a few things about wild camping, not least, to expect the unexpected. The hot stew was great and very much needed by the time it was bubbling hot. We had a chat about the day and then decided to retire to our respective tents for some shut eye.

    The weather was brutal during the night and early hours, lightening, wind, storms, but in between it was so quiet it was eerie, then, like a train going passed in the distance, the next storm approached, you could here it coming through the trees and it arrived as a blast of wind followed by torrential rain. The tents stood up to the onslaught pretty good, maybe a couple of seams let a few drops in, I’ll invest in some seam seal.

    Morning eventually arrived, as it does, with more rain and even some hail but we weren’t to worried as the bacon was sizzling away and the smell was lovely, bacon butties with a side of beans and sausage, the type that is all in a tin, I wouldn’t usually eat them but the occasion seemed to call for them. Followed buy a hot coffee and then, in between showers we very quickly de-camped and packed up. The rest of the day, I’m happy to say was cool but not cold and sunny.. see photo.



    I said there’d be more on the underestimated cold, well, we thought we were prepared, decent sleeping bags, inflated beds, thermal long pants and long sleeved shirt plus a T shirt. All seemed ok after fighting to get in to the bag and zip it up but just laid there with no movement to create any heat and in the early hours of the morning, the cold crept into my bones.. I ended up with my hoodie on and stuffing my towel into my sleeping bag and wrapping it around my legs, which made it just comfortable enough to sleep..

    Job done, would I do it again? You bet I would, I’d even risk another trip this year if I could get a weekend without rain, for the cold, an extra layer between me and the floor and better pj’s  :028: :008:





    Last Edit: October 19, 2022, 04:27:56 pm by af1-windy
    "When I’m riding my motorcycle, I’m glad to be alive. When I stop riding my motorcycle, I’m glad to be alive" Neil Peart.

  • Online bobdave   gb

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    Re: Wild camping, Galloway Forest-Take 1
    Reply #1 on: October 19, 2022, 05:11:49 pm
    October 19, 2022, 05:11:49 pm
    Sounds like you had a great adventure there.

  • Online Antares   gb

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    Online Antares

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    Re: Wild camping, Galloway Forest-Take 1
    Reply #2 on: October 19, 2022, 05:35:50 pm
    October 19, 2022, 05:35:50 pm
    *Originally Posted by bobdave [+]
    Sounds like you had a great adventure there.

    Adventure it was, my XR looked like it just finished a rally when I got home lol

  • Offline Warree   gb

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    Offline Warree

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    Re: Wild camping, Galloway Forest-Take 1
    Reply #3 on: October 19, 2022, 05:36:39 pm
    October 19, 2022, 05:36:39 pm
    Great job you blokes. Thanks for sharing  :152:

  • Online af1-windy   gb

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    Online af1-windy

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    Re: Wild camping, Galloway Forest-Take 1
    Reply #4 on: October 20, 2022, 09:37:29 am
    October 20, 2022, 09:37:29 am
    *Originally Posted by Antares [+]
    Adventure it was, my XR looked like it just finished a rally when I got home lol

    Mine too  :009: but the bike was easier to sort than drying out the tent..  :084: her in doors wouldn't let me put it in the dryer. I'm seriously considering a trip to the local launderette next time..  :164:



     
    "When I’m riding my motorcycle, I’m glad to be alive. When I stop riding my motorcycle, I’m glad to be alive" Neil Peart.