Solo Wild Camping & Landscape Photography


So, I thought it would be interesting to write a little piece about my first solo wild camping experience. Wild camping has always appealed to me and the benefits of doing this can be fantastic, however I have always lacked confidence to solo wild camp and I have no photography friends who would be interested in this. This year I decided to take the plunge and do my first solo wild camp.

Why wild camp?

  • Camping allows us to reconnect with the outdoors
  • You can shoot sunset, night sky & sunrise all in one session
  • It’s free
  • Peace & quiet
  • No long drives or silly o’clock rises
  • Wake up on site ready to shoot
  • It’s an adventure

 

Camp

After scouting several locations, I decided that my first solo would be on Lingmoor Fell. I had hoped for a cloud inversion as the weather was suggesting and this location would have offered the opportunity to capture this, looking down the Langdale Valley, alternatively I would only be a short walk from Blea Tarn. Another reason for this location choice was that I knew that if something went wrong, I could be back at my car in 15 minutes. A silly thought really, as what could possibly happen?

Open Space Web-Map builder Code

I set up camp just before sunset and unfortunately the weather didn’t play ball so I could not get a sunset photograph, however the forecast was still looking good for the morning.
I was nervous when setting up. I felt as if I should not be there and that I was doing something wrong. After rationalising my thoughts, I soon realised that this is how time in the outdoors aught to be spent and me camping here was no different to me having a picnic here. I am very responsible and I knew that my actions would leave no affect on any other person, live stock or land.
The Best Campsite in England.
The Best Campsite in England.

Once I had settled in I lit the stove, cracked open the hip flask, sat back and utterly enjoyed the sights and sounds of camping alone. There is nothing quite like it.

I must admit that I woke up a few times in the night, not for any particular reason other that not being able to settle in to a deep sleep. I guess I was still a little apprehensive. I kept my phone clutched in my sleeping bag and my knife by my side. Silly really.

Waking up in the morning, all the anxieties of the night before instantly evaporated. “What was I worried about?” All was still and the pre dawn light looked amazing. Coffee on, tent away & down to the tarn below.

Tarn Reflections
Tarn Reflections

The morning light on the Langdale Pikes was sublime and there was not a breath of wind. Waking up to this was what it was all about. Shortly after I took this image, a fellow photographer got chatting to me. I asked where he had come from; “Burnley” he replied. “Drove down at 3am”. His face was a picture when I explained that I had come from the top of Lingmoor, just a 10 minute walk away.

 

For more info check out my Kit Blog, but here is a summery of kit used:
Canon 5D MK III
Zeiss Distagon 21mm Lens
Canon 24-70L f2.8
Canon 70-200L f4 (None-IS)
Manfrotto 055CXPRO3
Garmin Fenix 3 (For navigation)
LowePro Filter Pouch
Lee Foundation Filter Holder
A Range of Nisi Filters
A Heliopan 105mm Polariser
A 105mm Attachment Ring for it to fit on to my Holder
HotShoe Bubble Level (Love this)
A Waterproof Camera Cover always comes in handy
As Does my Leatherman Skeletool
I Always Take a Head Torch
My Tent is a Vango Banshee 200
I Use a Thermarest Neoair X-Lite Sleeping Matt

I Make my Videos Using the Kit Below:
GoPro Hero 4 Silver
TimeLapse Head
GoPro 3 Way Mount
GoPro Jaws Clamp