About our Camping.
Sometimes camping is about cheap accommodation, sometimes it’s the only way because there are no alternatives, and sometimes it’s about doing everything possible to get a great wilderness experience.
For us, it’s mostly the last option, it’s certainly not cheaper, we pay landholders for all our sites and some rates are higher than a hostel bed.
For us, camping is one of the great experiences of the trip, like a great hike at Purnululu, or a great swim down Manning Gorge, at the end of your trip we want you to look back at the great campsites and include them in your list awesome things you did on tour.
So one thing we work really hard at, is securing exclusive access to awesome places to camp.
Whilst there are National Parks protecting some really special wilderness areas in the Kimberley, and sometimes we camp in these places, the vast majority of the land and wilderness is in private hands and our job is the get permission to use some of these places for setting up unbelievable camps.
The things we look for in a great camping spot are;
- Beautiful Views & Surroundings
- Immersion in Wilderness
- Access to swimming
- The ability to light a small campfire
- A place which adds something to the experience
At these places we literally soak up the wilderness, we sleep under the stars, we wake up with the birds, we feel the breeze, we watch the weather and we are live with the elements, sometimes it rains, sometimes it’s cold, sometimes it’s hot, but we adjust, we put up a rain shelter to keep us dry, or we build a nice campfire to keep us warm, we leap in the creek for a dawn swim when it’s hot.
Types Of Camps
Whilst our aim is to always have Private Wilderness Camps, this is not always possible, especially if our activities are taking place in a National Park.
On the Kimberley 9 day tour we camp for 8 nights;
- Private Wilderness Camps – 6 nights
- National Park Campgrounds – 2 nights
Private Wilderness Camps
These are areas where we arrive and set up camp, there are no buildings other infrastructure.
All sites are chosen to have beautiful views or surrounding, privacy, access to swimming and allow small campfires.
We set up camp with only what we can carry in the vehicle, this includes, tents, swags, tables, chairs, shelters, portable toilets & showers and cooking gear etc.
National Park Campgrounds
National park Campgrounds are not too dissimilar to the Private Wilderness Camps, we generally have a reasonably private area however there are other groups within the vicinity
Normally there is a basic toilet, this may be a flushing style or a composting style.
It is not always possible to have a campfire in these campgrounds.
Are there hot showers at the camp?
Yes, sort of, sometimes…. What we do is carry a portable shower, this is a canvas bag with a shower head on it which you can hang from a tree.
You basically fill the bag with water, hoist it up the tree, turn on the tap and shower away, you can’t use soap when doing this but you can fill the shower up with hot or cold water.
It’s an awesome experience taking a shower in the outdoors under a tree, it’s something everyone should do at least once.
An outdoor shower like this is not quite the same as waking up in a palatial hotel suite with an ensuite and a solid marble bath. It’s way cooler than that!
So if you are keen for a shower then it can happen, no worries.
It should also be noted that we swim nearly every day of the tour, you stay pretty clean on this trip.
Are there toilets at camp?
We carry a portable toilet, this is a sit down unit which is placed away from the general camping area in a private location.
What about snakes and spiders?
Yep these things live in Western Australia but they are rarely seen, they are more interested in doing snake and spider things than terrifying humans.
Just about every snake we see on tours, are seen on the road when we approach quickly in the vehicle, in these situations the snake has not had enough time to slither off into the bush, when walking through the bush, a snake will hear of feel you coming through vibrations and disappear long before you get close.
It is even less rare to see snakes at camp, we regularly use the same campsites, this means that the ground is generally clear of leaf litter and hiding spots, snakes are also cold blooded, which means they are less active at night when it’s cooler (and when we camp), and they are genuinely afraid of humans, any sign of us and the slither away.
So while deadly snakes and spiders make for great TV documentaries which make you think that Aussies risk death every time they blink, the reality is that incidents are extremely rare, here are some interesting facts.
- Nobody in Australia has died from a spider bite since 1979.
- The only deadly spider in Australia is the funnel web, which lives on the East Coast near Sydney
- Snakes kill less than 2 people a year in Australia, anecdotally, it seems that victims are almost always are trying to catch, kill or otherwise annoy the snakes.
What camping equipment is supplied?
We supply everything except sleeping bags, here’s a general list of the types of thing we carry;
- Swags (bedroll)
- Large rain shelter
- Chairs / Stools
- Portable toilet
- Portable shower
- Cooking equipment
- Cutlery and crockery
- Camp lights
What camping equipment will I need to bring on the tour?
- Sleeping bag
- Torch (ideally a head torch)
Do we have campfire?
Yes, when it is permitted. We can normally always have fires at our Wilderness Camps, they are not always possible in National Park Campgrounds.
We collect firewood throughout the tour, ideally everyone helps to do this.
Cooking at camp.
Just because we are camping it does not mean that the food is simple of bland, our guides work hard to ensure we have a great variety of tasty food.
Sometimes we cook over the fire, sometimes on gas stoves.