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Recent years have seen some pretty big changes in the way that we all approach camping, from the range of equipment available to types of experience on offer (think glamping, low impact trips and the growing list of festivals that are about so much more than simply music). With this in mind, and having tried some new experiences ourselves lately, our thoughts have turned to what the next five years will hold for campers. Here are our predictions.
It's Heading Up
As we discovered recently in Sequoia National Park, there are a lot of campers who are keen to get off the ground. Whether they're professional arborists, climbing hobbyists or just keen to put a couple of feet between them and the earth, there's a growing appetite for life in the trees. If you fall into the latter category, are yet to camp at height and wonder whether it's possible for you, reassurance is at hand. We've been lucky to witness many people enjoying their first Tentsile experience, and without exception, they've all commented on how easy and normal it feels. The advances in equipment and expansion of our range will also make the portable treehouse experience more accessible to more people as time goes on. Watch this space.
It's Going Wild
As the pace of modern life increases to a seemingly unsustainable level, more and more of us are feeling the urge to get away from it all and take our holidays (or even just our weekends) in the wild. While eco-lodges and hidden away cottages still flourish, we think more people will turn to camping to get their fix of nature. Increasing numbers of people are educating themselves about foraging, bushcraft and wildlife, and that naturally translates into spending as much time as possible surrounded by the kind of open space where you forget the city exists. Of course, in some places there are restrictions on where you can pitch a tent, but we're confident that enterprising land owners will increasingly start letting environmentally conscious, low impact campers share their areas of natural beauty by opening sites for just that purpose - and by sites, we just mean a permissible piece of land where you still feel largely alone with nature.
It's Getting Technical...
You've read enough of our blogs about gear and gadgets to know that outdoor brands are inventing ingenious equipment at quite a pace. From clever solar stuff to super-efficient stoves via beds so comfortable you forget you're lying on the ground, these advances make it ever easier to live in the manner to which you are accustomed when you're on a trip - to have your camping cake and eat it too. It's not just about comfort, though. We're huge fans of the way that the newest gear allows campers to be environmentally conscious, keep their impact low and stay safe on big adventures. Gone are the days of scarring the ground with inexpert fire-making or going through pack after pack of batteries to keep your torch alight, and camping is a whole lot better for it.
...but Not Too Technical
Above all, camping will keep heading where it's always headed - to happy faces around glowing camp fires, delicious meals rustled up from tin foil and sandwich bags, and the thrill of waking up to the smell of damp earth and the promise of a day of new adventures. We're excited about all the people who want to get involved - who brave all weathers and make time around their daily lives to come out and experience the world by getting closer to it and deeper in it. We've been asked if camping as we know it is becoming a dying art, and honestly, we don't think it is. Regardless of equipment, location or who's involved, the central tenets of camping remain the same. As long as there are adventurers out there with an eye for a view and a bit of creative spirit, the art of camping will go on.