First time bivvying? That’s exciting! Preparation is essential – you can’t just wild camp anywhere in the UK, so pick your destination carefully.
It is best to make a rough plan about where you’re going to sleep by having a look at the map. The satellite view in Google maps can help you choose a spot more accurately.
You’ll also need to have a good kit. Before setting off on your adventure, check you’ve got all the items on this kit list in your backpack.
- Bivvy bag
- Sleeping bag
- Sleeping mat
- Woolly hat and gloves
- Woolly socks
- Down jacket
- Merino or thermal top and trousers to wear in your sleeping bag
- Tea/hot chocolate/coffee
- Water (3L per day minimum)
- Food (see a list of easy and healthy vegetarian wild camping recipes here)
- Spork, bowl, and mug
- Head torch and batteries
- Emergency bothy bag if you’re bivvying in the mountains
- Map and compass
- Toothbrush and mini toothpaste
- Toilet paper
- Rubbish bag
- Clean clothes (optional if you’re away for one night only)
- Dirty clothes bag (optional)
And here are a couple of bonus tips:
- You can use your backpack as a pillow. An alternative to this is stuffing your down jacket and spare clothes in a dry sack.
- Don’t forget you might need cooking water if you fancy pasta, soup, or coffee. Either account for that in your water supplies or plan to bivvy by a water source.
- If the weather looks horrible, don’t despair. You can bivvy even when it’s raining by setting up a tarp. Look out for an area with trees or take along some poles.
- Keep batteries separate from your headtorch – if you leave them inside it, and it turns on while you’re hiking, you’ll be left with no light.
- If you aren’t bivvying by a water source, wet wipes are good for a quick wash or doing the washing up before putting your cookware back in your backpack. Don’t forget to take them back with you in your rubbish bag.
- A down jacket is an excellent alternative to wear in your sleeping bag if you can’t invest in thermal clothing.
- The best times of year to go bivvying are autumn and spring when the midges aren’t out.
Now you should be all ready. Happy bivvying!
If you’d like to read up more about bivvying, check out this post.
You can find more advice on bivvying here.