I’ve recently become obsessed with Alastair Humphreys’ and his new book Microadventures. It’s all about stepping away for the desk if only for a weekend or even a night and getting out of the city for a cheap and exhilarating wild camping adventure.
Inspired, my boyfriend and I wanted to try this out. We have a lovely tent we wanted to make use of and I was taking the car so the ‘wild’ part (i.e wandering into the wilderness, no campsite, just you and a bivvy bag) was less convenient, but we headed to Devon with no specific plan of where we would stay, and decided our destination in a coffee shop on the way with 15 minutes of wi-fi. We coincidentally picked the same place on our separate smartphone searches: the South Devon Heritage Coast. We packed up from rainy Cornwall where we’d been staying and set off for our adventure.
The road that leads to Karrageen campsite is incredibly narrow and windy, we edged down it wondering what lay at the end. After a quick pit stop at the shop to pay for our pitch and grab some snacks we rounded the corner and crossed the lush green field for our spot. The view and location were spectacular.
From our perch at the top of a rolling grassy hill we could see all the way down to the sea. We pitched our tent, laid out the picnic rug and spent the afternoon bathing in the sun. There were other tents to our left and right, but it didn’t feel intrusive as only the view lay ahead.
A little before sunset, we took a stroll down to the beach; an easy 20 minute downhill amble along a country lane and then a beautiful footpath in the fields passing grazing sheep, a tricking stream and a meadow of long grass and mismatched flowers.
We reached the sea and breathed in the salty air. Ahead of us, the sun was glimmering down over the ocean and silhouetting the rocks which jutted out. We took the scenic route around to the other bay, clambering over the boulders like kids.
In the second bay colourful boats were moored on the beach. We walked over to the cob to take in the view back over to the Hope Cove, and Owen took great pleasure in watching me cross the wall, expecting me to get soaked by the waves crashing against the side. I didn’t. HA!
We topped off the evening with a drink at the tapas bar in Hope Cove watching the setting sun, and then ran back through the fields uphill to the campsite to cook alfresco. We didn’t realise the flame had got blown out in the wind so the pasta didn’t really cook… it was really pretty disgusting.
In the morning, we awoke to that spectacular view again and cooked our breakfast on the stove, flame fully functioning this time. As we packed up and left it was with a feeling of invigoration from our weekend getaway. Microadventures, you are my new best friend.
Details: Karrageen campsite is only accessible by car. There are good facilities on site: drinking water, showers (you have to pay for hot water), toilets, sinks and a well-stocked shop. There’s also a washing up room for your dishes and laundry facilities. There are a couple of food options in Hope Cove: a pub and the tapas bar, there’s also a little post office. Campsite prices are here.