Have you been watching the four part series on Channel 5 on Friday night called ‘Celebrity 5 go Motorhoming?’ Personally I think they should have called the series ‘The Barking Bugle 3 Go Motorhoming’, featuring Frodo, Pupstar and yours truly! BOL
In the TV programme 5 celebrities try their hand at motorhoming for the first time, stopping off at campsites, or in the case of Nick Heyward, Don Warrington and Melvyn Hayes, sneaking off to sleep in chalets overnight for extra comfort!
Now the 3 of us at the Barking Bugle are old paws at motorhoming, having travelled the length and breadth of the UK over the years. So this summer we decided we would be even more adventurous and go ‘wild’ motorhoming! What’s that you may bark? It’s all about getting off the beaten track, finding quiet locations away from the crowds and camping for free!
‘Being able to travel, wherever or whenever you like is really quite liberating’, Cleo Rocos said in the third episode of the show – I couldn’t agree more! So with Frodo as the designated driver we set off in our motorhome for the adventure of a lifetime!
Like the celebrities we headed up to Scotland but began by making our way through central England. Wild camping is illegal in England but we were lucky enough to stumble upon a small privately owned car park in the Yorkshire Dales where we could make a donation for overnight parking! The next day we set off to Bonny Scotland, where wild camping is perfectly legal and acceptable – you can park up overnight anywhere you like within reason but I wouldn’t suggest the M42!
One of the best things about wild camping is that you can decide what view you would like each time you stop overnight, and wow did we find some great ones!
Like the ‘boys’ in Celebrity 5 we also stopped off to sample some whisky at one of the many distilleries in Scotland. However, the behaviour of the celebrities was extremely tame compared to my antics where I ‘sampled’ one too many, and was subsequently arrested for foul mouthed ranting in Inverary and imprisoned in the jail. Most nights, however, we just enjoyed a quiet night in, admiring the view, savouring the peace and enjoying a game of scrabble before bedding down for the night.
One of the things we like best about having a motorhome is you don’t have to abide by any timetables. If you like somewhere you can stay for as long as you wish but if you don’t you just move on. We had no real fixed plan and just meandered through the countryside as the mood took us. This way we just happened upon local community events like the Highland Games in Lochinver, and the Sheildaig Regatta where we cheered the home team on with much gusto as if we were locals, born and bred there. At Sheildaig we also entered the local dog show picking up 3 rosettes – Frodo won Best Dog in Show!
We found several beautiful, isolated spots in Scotland. There are so many empty beaches to run about on and clear water to swim in. The scenery is breathtaking in places and although it was difficult to understand the Scottish bark at first, we gradually became acclimatised to the accent and made many new friends! Yes, the weather can be quite wet at times but this did not dampen our enthusiasm when exploring some of the many nooks and crannies in this wee country!
If wild motorhoming is not for you there are plenty of super campsites to enjoy. We love the one at Durness where we stopped over for a couple of nights in order to wash our fur and empty our waste tank. The views are quite stunning especially when the sun comes out.
When wild motorhoming do please be considerate and use your common sense:-
Do not leave any litter and consider picking up any litter left behind by others.
Do not cut down trees to make fires.
Do not park in enclosed fields with crops or animals, or obscure access by stopping off in front of gates.
Take care not to disturb wildlife and natural habitats.
Use biodegradable detergents.
Don’t be noisy and keep the barking down.
Drain kitchen and waste water tanks ONLY at a campsite or a designated area.
Make sure you park safely and you are not a danger to other drivers and vehicles.
We totally love our motorhome and the freedom and flexibility it gives us! Frodo’s driving is actually rather good and my navigation skills are pretty impressive even though I do say so myself! It’s utterly wooftastic getting out in the great outdoors! Just look at us in the photo below – see how relaxed and chilled out we look! And that’s without drinking any Scottish whisky! We are looking forward to going on many more trips and we would absolutely love to hear about any of your adventures in a motorhome. So please get in touch if you’d like us to share your stories.