Walking and camping - Hints & Tips
Below are some ideas and advice for the walker / camper in the UK and in France.
- Top100 French maps don’t have the waterproof surface that some UK maps do ( OS Active maps ). Loose supermarket vegetable bags can be used as a protective and see-through cover for the French map in case it rains.
- Only take sections of maps with you that you will be using ( cut to size etc ) in order to lighten your load.
- When you have finished with maps, send them back home by post in order to lighten your load
- Items such as maps, new boots etc can be sent to you ‘Poste Restante’ ( see Post Office website for details ).
- Mini solar panels to re-charge batteries are an alternative to carrying lots of batteries for the GPS.
- Always buy bottled water or boil it if from other sources when in France. This avoids potential stomach upsets.
- Loose dogs can be a problem in France. Carry some easily accessible tent pegs clipped together that you can jangle to cause noise to assist in getting rid of said dog.
- Be aware of French ( food ) shop opening hours. Shops usually close between 12.30pm and around 3pm on weekdays. On Saturdays supermarkets can close at 12.30pm and can remain closed through to Tuesday. If in doubt, always keep a reserve of energy food in case shops are not open when you need them.
- In France, don’t assume that every village has a shop in it. They often don’t. Always plan ahead regarding food and water, and carry reserves.
- In hot summer months it is a good idea to set off walking very early in the day, and arrive at your destination before the heat really starts.
- A survival bag and miscellaneous plastic bags can be placed under rucksack / boots etc as handy ground cover when camping
- Squirrels and other small animals are skilled in finding food. Always securely close and/or double wrap all bags that contain food, thereby removing the ‘ sniff factor ’.
- Squirrels have also been known to steal walking boots, so ensure that these are safely stored inside your tent overnight.