So, our camping trip in Scotland. It rained a lot. In fact, we noticed on day 2 that there was literally not one second of the day that it wasn't solidly throwing it down. We had to sleep in the car that night as there was no chance of getting our tent up without it being disgustingly wet and awful. I can't lie, it wasn't comfortable, but we were warm and dry. We were also in the middle of the forest in a carpark and we didn't get murdered, so that was a success. On the other hand....the first night...
We originally planned to wild camp as we felt like being around loads of other people on a campsite wasn't our thing, and wild camping is OK around most areas of Scotland. So we spent the day exploring, keeping our eyes open for spots to set up the tent. We drove all the way down Loch Tay, past Comrie and Killin (where we had our famous flat tyre in the middle of nowhere last time, great memories). It was around 7pm at this point and we'd even asked a few campsites if they had space out of desperation but they were all full. One guy running a site drew a little map on a post-it note of a hostel with space for wild camping behind it further north, near Glencoe. So we jumped in the car and drove up.
This area was in the middle of these murky, open moors. It was raining and misty and surrounded by mountains and it felt incredibly like a scene from a horror film. We found the hostel which was conveniently next door to an abandoned hotel (literally these were the only two buildings around for miles) and there was a small wooded area behind where we set up our tent and got ourselves sorted. It's around 8.30pm now and we're knackered, hungry, and being eaten alive by midgies. I was so relieved to have found a place for the tent and partially covered by trees.
Just next to the woodland, near the hostel, Steven and I noticed a group of young guys with midgie mesh over their faces (practical, but makes you feel like they could very definitely be serial killers) hanging around. You know when you just get the sense that somebody is a wrong'un? Steven had that straight away, and after I got out the tent and had a look I confirmed it. They were hanging around, giving our tent the eyes, throwing rocks and bottles around and all other activities that dodgy people do. It took us about 3 minutes to decide that we'd rather not be mugged in our sleep and we had to pack up and move on. I've seen Eden Lake, I know how these things go.
So, it's now 9.45pm and it's getting dark and we have nowhere to sleep. Luckily, after another hefty drive we found a campsite near Ben Nevis and set ourselves up for the night. Unfortunately, it was too late to go pumping up our airbed so we had to sleep in our sleeping bags on the tent floor and it was freezing and uncomfortable, but hey, nobody died.
So yea, night one was fun.
Other highlights include finding an abandoned ski lift at the very top of the Cairngorms, seeing two shetland ponies doing it, and my portable camping toaster that sits on top of the gas stove and does four slices at once.
I'll be back Scotland.
See 'Somewhere in Scotland 2' here!