Now that you’ve got your Achtung Camper Campervan or Motorhome, the question prevails – how do you camp responsibly? Camping is a favoured pastime for Australians and one that grew in popularity both during and post-COVID 19 entering our worlds, but it is vital that we embrace this activity with respect and accountability.
Camping should be done in a way that avoids long-term damage and ultimately protects our environment.
Here are a few things to keep in mind once you are out there.
Be aware of other campers and keep the volume down. Everyone enjoys playing their favourite tunes on holiday, but what you like may not be in sync with others within earshot. Most parks or hosts have a designated quiet time, which is usually from 10 pm to 6 am.
Take note that you are camping amongst other people and be considerate. They too are here to enjoy themselves, relax and reconnect with nature. If you like to fly a drone then follow the regulations such as no flying over people, flying at least 30 metres away from people and only flying one drone at a time.
It’s a no-brainer really! Clean up after yourself, leave no trace and dispose of any rubbish responsibly. Most likely another family of campers will be set up after you and they do not need to start their holiday picking up after previous holidaymakers.
Set up camp in designated areas, or camp on hardened ground. Avoid soft soil or fragile vegetation. If you are hiking stay on tracks, avoid creating new tracks and refrain from breaking branches off trees.
This is the second stage of rubbish which includes disposing of grey water (kitchen and shower water) and toilet waste in designated dump stations. Bookmark dumppoints.com to locate these facilities easily.
Avoid petting or feeding any local critters. It is tempting, but animals should not eat human food as it may upset their stomachs or transfer diseases. If you do spot an animal in the wild, give them space as you are in its habitat. Some species adapt readily to humans and resume normal behaviour, whilst others will abandon their young or flee specific areas that are crucial to their survival. If you have your own pet with you, keep them on a leash.
LEAVE WHAT YOU FIND
If everyone walked away with the objects they found, there would be nothing left for the next camper to discover such as fossils, feathers, plants, rocks, shells and more. Particularly, never touch Aboriginal rock art. If you do turn over rocks to unearth hidden gems, remember to return them to their natural state.
Firstly, be sure you are permitted to light a fire where you are camping and check for current fire bans. Pack your own kindling and firewood, dead wood in the area is most likely the habitat of local wildlife. Create a fire ring or build a fire on a previous site, never leave it unattended and ensure it is completely out by pouring water on it.
AVOID POPULAR AREAS
Popular camping spots are hot spots for a reason, but overuse can have a negative effect on the environment. It’s worth sometimes giving a place a miss, visiting at off-peak times or trying somewhere different like a national park or a free camp spot.