Readers reveal their camping mishaps


Murray Evans: “Fab piece, made me smile, thanks. Having spent most of my life camping in one form or another my expertise grew as I got older. From a sweaty tent and a ground sheet through to a sherpa caravan with beds, huge tents, carpets, kitchen and more. My motto was if you can’t stand up in the morning to put your pants on then your tent is too small. I took all the luxuries to make camping more bearable.”

Val Law: “As a 76-year-old singleton female with two dogs, I have sadly turned to glamping after my tent blew down on top of us. But minimal glamping. The one luxury I cannot do without is my own in-tent loo.”

Kara Gray: “Depending on your age and the condition of your back and joints, a great camp mattress and comfortable chair is very much needed. I’ve just had a week camping with the family with those little luxuries and it was fine, I couldn’t rough it on a thermarest nowadays.”

Tee Platt: “Oh the shame. I have multi-use pronged forks and everyone we met on our glamping trip had fork envy.”

What happens when it all goes horribly wrong

‘Phil the Fluter’: “A week after passing my driving test, I drove to Cornwall in an 850 Mini with my mate and his tent. Came out of a club late and pitched up in a farmers field. Woke up the next day to find we were in a sewage farm.”

Royston Collier: “I remember pitching a tent in a field one night, and waking up to find a landowner and a policeman having a chat outside… in the front garden of a huge manor house! They found it quite amusing, fortunately for me. Those were the days.”

Sue Benjamins: “My husband and I pitched our tiny tent on a good level spot in the dark one night after hours of driving. Come daylight, we found ourselves in the middle of a neat front lawn; the lawn of a rather posh owner of a detached house in Sussex – the tolerant residents gave us tea and toast as we blushingly packed up to move.”

Jennifer Carter: “While camping in the Matopos Hills in Rhodesia, I saw a cobra go into our tent. I watched anxiously and, luckily, it did come out. After that, I was delighted to have tents with a built-in groundsheet.”

Susan Wilcock: “Loved this funny, lighthearted article. My overriding memory of camping is a trip to the North Wales coast when our children were very small. There was just one cold water standpipe and one toilet. Our tent blew down in a storm and a kind-hearted B&B owner made up some makeshift beds for us in the attic because all of the letting rooms were occupied. Didn’t put us off going again, though we always checked the weather forecast first.”

Anthony Box: “Memorable moments from my camping past:

1. Being woken at 3am by the farmer asking for help rounding up his sheep that had escaped.

2. Getting untangled at 5am from the remains of the tent that had just been crushed by the inquisitive cows released into the field that morning.”

Simon Bell: “One night, having pitched on the shore of an Italian lake, a storm blew up and Mum and Dad spent most of the night holding on to the awning to stop it blowing away. Us kids slept through the whole thing.”

Michael Joseph Wimbs: “Having pitched our Scouts tent “in a fallow field” in Basel, after arriving late, we were curious next morning to be wakened by the patter of raindrops on canvas despite strong sunlight penetrating the same. Sticking our sleepy heads out to solve the mystery, we were instantly and pungently shampooed, to the evident delight of the Swiss farmer driving past on his muck-spreader.”

Feeling inspired to join in the debate? Carry it on in the comments section below.


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