Peace, solitude and self-sufficiency in the Scottish Wilderness
The Northwest of Scotland is one of the last true wildernesses in the United Kingdom. Expansive, untamed and ruggedly beautiful, it’s the ultimate place for the brave to explore in search of solitude and a connection with nature. Thanks to the ‘right to roam’ being codified into Scotland’s laws, the freedom to enjoy the land (but not without rules) is enshrined in statute and ‘wild camping’ is much less likely to result in difficulty, but responsible behaviour is still expected. Taking a luxury motorhome this far north is sure to be a rewarding experience, but there are a few things to bear in mind.
Keep an eye on your supplies
This part of Scotland is well off the beaten track. The roads will be more than sufficient, but keeping an eye on the weather and planning your resources is a must. Bear in mind that in that part of the World, filling stations are few and far between, so it’s probably wise to take advantage of any chances you get to fill up and stock up. While the leisure batteries in your motorhome will charge up as you drive, your onboard water and gas bottle won’t. Your ‘grey water’ reservoir and toilet cassette will need emptying from time to time, so once again, keep an eye out for facilities allowing you to do just that and make sure you fill up/empty as appropriate.
Beware of the Wildlife
The sheep are fairly benign, you’re unlikely to be bothered by the badgers and even the Loch Ness Monster keeps itself to itself these days. Forget what you’ve been told about the roving herds of wild haggis, they never bite, however, do pay close attention to everything you’ve ever been told about the notorious Scottish Midges. Like tiny pterodactyls of terror, they swarm in their millions and bite mercilessly. If you’re braving the highlands, make sure you bring along the best insect repellant you can find. And lots of it.
Wrap up warm
Your motorhome can keep the weather off you and keep you comfortable while you’re safe inside, but at some point, you’re going to have to brave the elements. In the NorthWest of Scotland, it’s frequently ‘a bit fresh’ and often soaking wet, freezing cold, blowing a gale or any combination of the three. It’s been said that there’s no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing, so make sure you take plenty of warm, dry clothing and waterproof outer layers and you’ll be able to repel the worst the weather can throw at you in the Scottish wilderness.
What to see? You’ll have to ask!
The Highlands may well be mostly wilderness, but there are still people up there. Dotted around here and there are small villages, which for the most part will be reassuringly devoid of the big name shops, eateries and chains which have made most towns in the rest of the UK almost indistinguishable. Expect quaint pubs and tea-rooms, wonderfully fresh food and largely friendly locals who’ll know everything there is to know about what to see, do and experience locally. You may well be up in the Northwest of Scotland for a bit of solitude, but we reckon disconnecting from the grid and experiencing real human interaction can be just as rewarding and refreshing.
Make sure your provisions and other essentials are well stocked, top up your tank and set out to explore the wonders of Northwest of Scotland. The rugged, unspoilt beauty of the landscape is as sure to take your breath away as the climate, but you’ll no doubt return to ‘civilisation’ afterwards feeling utterly invigorated and refreshed by your motorhome adventure.