Hillwalking in Scotland · Wild Camping and Backpacking

This page is a collection for all my wild camping related information. Wild camping is camping away from designated camp sites, typically in mountain areas. Provided you follow the code wild camping is allowed in most areas of the Scottish countryside. This page covers my camping equipment, planned camping routes and sites, and a report of previous trips out with the tent.

Pitched besides the Feshie

The image above shows my Tarptent Scarp 1 tent besides the River Feshie on the second night of a three day trip through the Grampian Mountains in March 2012.

Wild Camp Trip Reports

NameDateRouteJournalPhotosDistance (km)Ascent (m)Munros
Carn an Righ View Carn an Righ Wild Camp Day 1 46.51 2075.0
Glen Gairn Wild Camping View Glen Gairn Wild Camp 43.11 1778.0
Atholl Forest and Western Cairngorms View Blair Atholl to Aviemore Highlights 82.66 3895.0
Attadale Hills Wild Camp View Attadale Hills Wild Camping Trip 35.97 3160.0
Glen Orrin View Glen Orrin 45.23 1687.0
The Ben Alder Region View Jun 12 - Ben Alder Wild Camping Highlights 64.88 3470.0
Western Cairngorms Wild Camp View Western Cairngorm Wild Camping Day 1 47.42 2256.0
Glenfinnan to Glen Cluanie View Glenfinnan to Glen Cluanie Highlights 82.74 2997.0
Eastern Cairngorms Wild Camp View Eastern Cairngorms Wild Camp 40.09 1648.0
Loch an Daimh Circuit View Loch an Daimh Circular 33.15 1945.0
Ardgour Corbetts View Apr 13 - Ardgour Backpack Highlights 47.94 1676.0
TGO Challenge View TGO Challenge 2013 322.12 7216.0
Ben Cruachan View Ben Cruachan Day 1 42.32 3051.0
Killin to Kingussie View Killin to Kingussie 118.44 4158.0
Glen Lochay Overnighter View Mar 14 - Mamlorns 31.02 1038.0
Mullardoch Munros View Mar 14 - Mullardoch Munros 27.12 1956.0
Fisherfield Munros View May 14 - Fisherfield Highlights 100.3 5171.0
Ben Starav View Ben Starav Group - Day 1 47.39 3227.0
The North Monar Hills View Mar 13 - North Monar Hills 35.25 1848.0
Coulin Hills View May 15 - Coulin Hills: Highlights 34.8 2414.0
Loch Treig Hills View Aug 15 - Loch Treig Hills 32.15 1539.0
Glen Cluanie Horseshoe View Sep 15 - Cluanie Horseshoe 47.13 2203.0
Western Glen Affric Munros View Oct 15 - West Affric Hills 48.81 1948.0
Hadrian's Wall Path View Mar 2016 - Hadrians Wall 132.42 963.0
The Fannaich Munros View May 16 - Fannaichs 66.92 4278.0

Kit List

My list of lightweight camping gear which I took on my last backpacking trip into the Scottish mountains can be viewed as a PDF by clicking this link (or view the spreadsheet directly). My overall 3 season gear list is a work in progress, with tweaks and alterations before and after each trip.

I am currently operating with a rough base load of 7kg/15.5lb which is fairly respectable considering I carry a double-skinned tent and low rating sleeping bag. There are areas I can improve on but my main aim in 2011 is to get out a good few times with this gear, find out what works and what doesn't, and then tune it to minimise weight without compromising safety or enjoyment.

Trip DateTrip TitleNo. NightsBase WeightConsumablesSkin OutKit ListGear Analysis
June 2010Glen Dee, Cairngorms17,04693410,977ViewRead
April 2011Carn an Righ16,5041,99711,209ViewRead
April 2011North Glen Shiel16,7483,123112,456ViewNot Yet
June 2011Loch Avon, Cairngorms16,6941,52010,239ViewRead
October 2011Loch Einich, Cairngorms17,4741,41710,916ViewNot Yet
February 2012Glen Gairn, Cairngorms17,0051,36710,897ViewNot Yet
March 2012Blair Atholl to Aviemore, Cairngorms26,6302,14110,925ViewRead
May 2012West Monar Hills, North West Highlands27,5221,70312,459ViewNot Yet
  1. I took sufficient food for 3 days of walking but ended up cutting the trip short

My main bits of gear are listed in the table below:

ItemDescriptionWeight (g)Photos
Tent (3/4 Season)Tarptent Scarp 11322View
Sleeping Mat (3 Season)Exped Synmat UL 7460View
Sleeping Bag (3 Season)PHD Minim 400 Down (Rated to -5C)863View
Stove (Gas Canister)Optimus Crux & Pot284View
Stove (Meths)Trail Designs Caldera Sidewinder & Pot180View

I am currently using both Expedition Foods and Fuizion dehydrated meals which are supplied in tough, plastic pouches. They simply require the addition of hot water. The Expedition Foods are higher calorie (roughly 800kcal per meal) whilst the Fuizion meals are slightly lower calorie (~500-600kcal) but are very, very tasty. So far favourites are the Expedition Foods Chicken Tikka Masala and the Fuizion Lamb Stew with Pearl Barley.

Other People's Wild Camping Pages

Geoff over at V-G has put together an excellent series of pages on wild camping, covering everything from legality and pitches through food, equipment, water and hygiene. It is definitely worth a read if you are just starting off.

Wild Camp Ideas

I've read quite a few inspirational trip reports involving a wild camp high on a mountain and want to use this approach to get even further into the wilderness. Here are a few of my ideas for forthcoming trips:

  • Gleann an t'Slugain before the ruin
  • Loch Etchachan
  • Below Stuic Buttress
  • Glen Affric - Sgurr Gaorsic lochan camp
  • Glen Cononish for Ben Lui Group or Corrie on Ben Oss at around nn292256
  • Glen Shiel
  • Fisherfield
  • South of Ben More Assynt as per MCofS Walk
  • The Loch Arkaig Hills from Craig
  • The Fannaichs
  • The Grey Corries
  • Knoydart

Tips and Tricks