UKC

Reiff Parking Situation

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I believe that a few weeks ago the farmer got fed up with inconsiderate parking and blocked it all off, not just at the road end but for some way back along the road.

Does anyone know what the current situation is? 

In reply to Robert Durran:

Should be fine if you arrive by bicycle, Robert. 😊

4
 DaveHK 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

I'm curious about the legality of this, can a landowner just block off roadside parking?

I suspect this has been building up for a while at Reiff.  I've been their a lot and although I've often seen it busy I've rarely if ever seen parking that would interfere with resident or farming access.

One for Mountaineering Scotland?

In reply to Heartinthe highlands:

> Should be fine if you arrive by bicycle, Robert. 😊

Yes, if I have to park some distance away, I was planning to take my bike - hence why I am asking.

In reply to DaveHK:

> I suspect this has been building up for a while at Reiff.  I've been their a lot and although I've often seen it busy I've rarely if ever seen parking that would interfere with resident or farming access.

In June I had to park a bit back down the road for the first time ever - still saw nobody else out at the further areas. I think the bits near the road have been becoming popular with groups.

l'm told the farmer was also getting fed up with people making a mess - I would like to think this isn't climbers. Apparently he seemed pretty angry the morning he blocked the parking off.

 Dave Rumney 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

Parked there early July for a first visit and it felt quite unfriendly. Someone had blocked all but one of the parking spaces at the end of the road with rusty old farm implements. There's parking for about 3 vehicles about 100 yards back along the road where there aren't "No Parking" signs. Also, the gate to the field is locked and has a sign along the lines of "Private, No Camping" on it. 

There was a climbing instructor with some clients at the pinnacle area who said the parking sapces had only been blocked less than a week earlier.

As you say, maybe it does need an access rep to get involved to smooth the waters for climbers at least.

 DaveHK 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

If there's inconsiderate parking etc going on then that's obviously an issue but I also got the impression that there was just resentment about how busy it had become regardless of how visitors were behaving.

 Michael Gordon 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

I've sometimes seen folk parked further back when there was room at the end, which struck me as curious. 

Blocking the end bit seems like it would encourage bad parking rather than solve it - some strange logic going on! 

In reply to Dave Rumney:

Ok, Thanks. Looks like worth taking a bike, though I'm going midweek, so might be ok.

 DaveHK 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

> Ok, Thanks. Looks like worth taking a bike, 

My condolences.  

In reply to DaveHK:

> My condolences.  

Thanks. As long as the cycle is no more than a mile or two I should be ok again by the time I've had a pleasant hour's walk out to Rubha Ploytach.

 Jon Read 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

Yes, confirmed on the local FB group. Not sure if any space is left down there, now. Locally, the parking situation has been a sore point for a number of years there.

In reply to Heartinthe highlands:

> Should be fine if you arrive by bicycle, Robert. 😊

No idea why you have had a couple of dislikes for that. Weird.

3
In reply to DaveHK:

> If there's inconsiderate parking etc going on then that's obviously an issue but I also got the impression that there was just resentment about how busy it had become regardless of how visitors were behaving.

Understandable. Not obvious what the solution is. Maybe some parking further away and not by houses, maybe with an honesty box like Kinloch Hourn and then walk or cycle - might deter numbers a bit. 

 Michael Gordon 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

I always found the folk at the end house nice and friendly. Since they're the nearest to the end parking and seemed OK, I'm slightly surprised that others seem to have an objection to the parking there.

 rogerwebb 29 Jul 2021
In reply to DaveHK:

> I'm curious about the legality of this, can a landowner just block off roadside parking?

If they own it yes. There is no right to vehicular access. They cannot however clamp you or trap you. 

In reply to Michael Gordon:

> I always found the folk at the end house nice and friendly. Since they're the nearest to the end parking and seemed OK, I'm slightly surprised that others seem to have an objection to the parking there.

Aren't both the houses at the end of the road holiday lets?

 DaveHK 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

> Aren't both the houses at the end of the road holiday lets?

That's what I thought.

 DaveHK 29 Jul 2021
In reply to rogerwebb:

Cheers Roger.

 Jon Read 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

Message from Kim MacLennan, the owner of the 'the island', the strip of grazing land west of the Loch:

> It was due to us (the land owners) being unable to physically access our own land in order to move and raise high volumes of livestock. The land’s sole purpose is for the raising of sheep (our livelihood). The number of people camping on the land (after being asked to move on) even though there are clear signs not to camp has simply become unmanageable to the point it is causing distress to not only the livestock but to us as land owners as well. The number of people leaving not only rubbish but human waste, which is not only endangering the livestock but also presenting a health hazard to the wider public accessing the land, is getting beyond the point of ridiculous. There is a beautiful campsite not 3 miles along the road with excellent facilities and a restaurant and bar above it, what more could you want? Not only this but it was at a point where we could not even turn agricultural vehicles/ horse boxes when needed and at the point where people were parking in front of the actual padlocked gate meaning we were unable to access the livestock or move the livestock when needed which was simply unacceptable and unsustainable.

> We had hoped that it wouldn’t come to this but we can’t do more apart from asking people to move on or put up signage and members of the public are still causing a significant issue despite our efforts.

> It is a case of the minority ruining it for the majority but there are no plans in the future to open up the parking down there unless members of the public finally take notice.

I suggest that we let Mountaineering Scotland take this up.

 rogerwebb 29 Jul 2021
In reply to DaveHK:

It is a shame. I have hardly been there since the old campsite shut but was planning a trip soon.

Looks like Ardmair... 

 Michael Gordon 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

> Aren't both the houses at the end of the road holiday lets?

Maybe. Still seemed friendly whenever I saw them

1
 scragrock 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Jon Read:

This appears to be duplicating across the Highlands, Many areas being closed off or restricted due to poor behaviour/ignoring signs or just sheer numbers.

It is very worrying long term as i think the pandemic has intensified traffic in already sensitive areas, when this does blow over and the numbers of visitors returns to a more acceptable level the restrictions will remain and the damage will be done. 

For those who remain i see a Hard Fecht on the horizon.

In reply to Jon Read:

> Message from Kim MacLennan, the owner of the 'the island', the strip of grazing land west of the Loch:

"There is a beautiful campsite not 3 miles along the road with excellent facilities and a restaurant and bar above it, what more could you want?"

The old campsite.

The new one is ugly, built on bulldozed platforms, is often midgy, overly commercial and has no beach to speak of.

I don't go to places like Reiff for "facilities", pubs and restaurants

Post edited at 15:55
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In reply to rogerwebb:

> It is a shame. I have hardly been there since the old campsite shut but was planning a trip soon.

Yes, a Reiff weekend has been a much poorer experience since it closed

 Michael Gordon 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Jon Read:

Thanks for enquiring with them. The last sentence is a bit depressing. Regarding "unless members of the public finally take notice", even if all problems cease most landowners tend to take a 'if it aint broke don't fix it' approach once access has been withdrawn. 

In reply to scragrock:

> This appears to be duplicating across the Highlands, Many areas being closed off or restricted due to poor behaviour/ignoring signs or just sheer numbers.

> It is very worrying long term......

Yes, I'm not sure how things will settle longer term, but things are certainly becoming more like The Lakes in some places. At the very least a little more flexibility and imagination is becoming needed to enjoy the sort of freedom we are used to.

1
 Qwerty2019 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

Cant believe this isnt happening more often.  Farmers are having to put up with self entitled idiots all over the place.  If you think climbers are exempt from this, they are not.  Even on this site you get self entitled pricks discussing why they wont carry a few coins to pay for parking in the lakes.  Why they should be able to pay by telepathy and what not.  Dumping their cars on grass verges.

The van life mentality is making communities lives a misery.  Climbers are making lives a misery.  Campers are making lives a misery.  Its absolutely every where you go.

Take for example Robert Durrans comment (I think in jest)

"There is a beautiful campsite not 3 miles along the road with excellent facilities and a restaurant and bar above it, what more could you want?"

The old campsite.

The new one is ugly, built on bulldozed platforms, is often midgy, overly commercial and has no beach to speak of.

I don't go to places like Reiff for "facilities", pubs and restaurants 

People would prefer to camp without permission in a farmers field, disturb his livestock and take a shite in a corner for his livestock to eat rather than pay a few quid for a provided facility.  If he is lucky they dont rip his fence up and use it for firewood.

Now i am not suggesting Robert would do that, but plenty would and its now at critical mass time where i can understand the farmer, within the law just saying fcuk it.   Joe public is treating the great outdoors appallingly and its not just the Majorca loving minority.  Its those that claim to love the great outdoors.

21
In reply to Qwerty2019:

> Take for example Robert Durrans comment (I think in jest)

> "There is a beautiful campsite not 3 miles along the road with excellent facilities and a restaurant and bar above it, what more could you want?"

> The old campsite.

> The new one is ugly, built on bulldozed platforms, is often midgy, overly commercial and has no beach to speak of.

> I don't go to places like Reiff for "facilities", pubs and restaurants 

Why on earth do you think it was in jest? If the wonderful, old campsite were still open I don't think there would be the current issues with camping in the area. It offered adequate minimal facilities and loads of capacity at a fair price.

I am in  no way condoning "dirty camping" but there are bound to be problems when the existing campsites are inadequate for demand.

Post edited at 17:13
6
 joem 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Qwerty2019:

> Now i am not suggesting Robert would do that, but plenty would and its now at critical mass time where i can understand the farmer, within the law just saying fcuk it.   Joe public is treating the great outdoors appallingly and its not just the Majorca loving minority.  Its those that claim to love the great outdoors.

But is the farmer within the law? if the parking is within the public highway, which includes the verge then he has no business blocking it. 

to me it stinks more of using a few bad incidences to get back to the "geroff my land" mentality. 

also how does blocking off existing parking spaces stop people parking in stupid places, if anything it'd make it worse surely?  

19
 jimtitt 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

> Why on earth do you think it was in jest? If the wonderful, old campsite were still open I don't think there would be the current issues with camping in the area. It offered adequate minimal facilities and loads of capacity at a fair price.

So why is it shut?

 DaveHK 29 Jul 2021
In reply to jimtitt:

> So why is it shut?

The owner didn't want to carry on running it.

It was by some margin the best campsite in Scotland.

Post edited at 17:34
In reply to jimtitt:

> So why is it shut?

I'm not sure. I know the couple who ran it retired so maybe nobody local wanted to take it on. I'm not sure who owns the land.

In reply to DaveHK

> It was by some margin the best campsite in Scotland.

Yes, the last weekend it was open about 10 years ago in October there were several largish groups having last get togethers there; a lovely atmosphere tinged with real sadness. I think the woman who ran it was quite touched because she was reluctant to come round collecting peoples' money.

In reply to Qwerty2019:

> If you think climbers are exempt from this, they are not.  Even on this site you get self entitled pricks discussing why they wont carry a few coins to pay for parking in the lakes.

Considering I was one of the people in that discussion, I feel that comment is rather uncalled for. The argument was whether card facilities should be provided not whether parking should be free.

8
 Michael Gordon 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Qwerty2019:

To be honest I think the landowner has assessed the situation in the round better than you. As she says, it's a small few who piss off farmers/landowners and thus ruin things for the majority. Most are considerate.

Let's keep a sense of perspective. Nothing wrong with wild camping if it is done responsibly.

In reply to Robert Durran:

Wasn't it also something to do with the toilet facilities? And a license? I thought they were going to have to upgrade the facilities which turned out to be too costly / too much hassle and decided the time had come to retire. Or something similar.

Agree though it was just a brilliant, lovely campsite. 

 kevin stephens 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Alkis:

> Considering I was one of the people in that discussion, I feel that comment is rather uncalled for. The argument was whether card facilities should be provided not whether parking should be free.

Ah yes. The argument over why “they” can’t provide wifi or broadband cable to parking ticket machines in remote places so as to facilitate card payment because I’m too self entitled and feckless to organise taking some coins with me

Post edited at 18:06
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 kevin stephens 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

> I don't go to places like Reiff for "facilities", pubs and restaurants But I do go to “facilities” to enable me to climb at places like Reiff

FIFY

7
In reply to Graham Briffett:

> Wasn't it also something to do with the toilet facilities? And a license? I thought they were going to have to upgrade the facilities which turned out to be too costly / too much hassle and decided the time had come to retire. Or something similar.

Ok I didn't know that. If so that is a real shame. The facilities of toilets, wash basins and cold water tap were perfect.

 kevin stephens 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

This is similar to why camping at Eric’s cafe at Tremadog is no longer available. Eric got away with it being under the radar. The new owners faced a lot of problems and costs in trying to go official and Legit. 

In reply to kevin stephens:

> > 

> FIFY

Not sure what your point is but I go to places like Reiff to enjoy camping and being outside by the sea and to climb. I am prepared to pay a fair price for the sort of basic facilities that were at the old campsite, but resent paying twice as much for a much poorer experience and facilities I don't need at the new campsite.

1
 Gary Latter 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Graham Briffett:

> Wasn't it also something to do with the toilet facilities? And a license? I thought they were going to have to upgrade the facilities which turned out to be too costly / too much hassle and decided the time had come to retire. Or something similar.

> Agree though it was just a brilliant, lovely campsite. 

I remember speaking to the woman who ran the campsite at the time. The closure was not at their (her and her husband's) instigation. If I recall correctly, they leased the land. The landowner discovered it was more profitable to cease allowing it to operate as a campsite, and claim some set aside funding/grant money instead.

I know that many local businesses throughout the area benefitted a fair bit the campsite - shops, pubs, cafes, although they are few and far between in that particular part of Coigach.

In reply to kevin stephens:

It's mobile network most of the time. The NT car parks manage it just fine. As for calling people "feckless", you know where to put that.

Post edited at 18:41
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 ScraggyGoat 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Gary Latter:

The couple that ran the old campsite had taken a long lease (in this case decades long) on the field, for the purposes of a campsite, and we’re tenants. They had timed the lease to expire when they reached retirement age.   When the term was up the landowner didn’t extend the lease or look for new tenants preferring to put the land to other use.

At points during the final year there was a intermittently note to this affect.

Lovely site, it was the best in Scotland, would have changed in character  if had still been open and swamped by NC500ers.

Cant see what Mountaineering Scotland can do, even if they were inclined (which I doubt). Space was always tight at the end of the road, and the issue (leaving aside the dirty camping, and camping in livestock) is volume of demand, which in turn leads to people chancing poor parking behaviour.  The only solution would be a new car park at some point before the hamlet, which would require shifting bog and rock, even in the event a local was happy to give up the land……it would just fill with motorhomes.

Post edited at 18:46
2
In reply to ScraggyGoat:

> Lovely site, it was the best in Scotland, would have changed in character  if had still been opened and swamped by NC500ers.

It is well off the main NC500 and I think it could have absorbed quite a lot of them anyway without it being ruined (unlike some other sites).

1
 DaveHK 29 Jul 2021
In reply to kevin stephens:

> The argument over why “they” can’t provide wifi or broadband cable to parking ticket machines in remote places so as to facilitate card payment because I’m too self entitled and feckless to organise taking some coins with me

No need for that kind of language whatsoever.

8
 DaveHK 29 Jul 2021
In reply to ScraggyGoat:

> Cant see what Mountaineering Scotland can do, 

As an official body they could open a dialogue with all the concerned parties.  That may or may not help but if there's no dialogue things definitely won't change.

>it would just fill with motorhomes.

Height barrier?

Post edited at 18:55
1
In reply to Gary Latter:

AH right... Yes, I can see how I could have misunderstood (or my foggy brain had forgotten vital bits and made up others). But that makes sense. Thanks.

Yes, a real shame either way, I really can't think of anywhere even remotely comparable now. I find it really quite sad how few tents I see on "campsites" these days...all full of vans and caravans and far too many "facilities".

Post edited at 19:07
2
 Michael Gordon 29 Jul 2021
In reply to ScraggyGoat:

> Cant see what Mountaineering Scotland can do, even if they were inclined (which I doubt). Space was always tight at the end of the road, and the issue (leaving aside the dirty camping, and camping in livestock) is volume of demand, which in turn leads to people chancing poor parking behaviour.  

I would like to think they would be inclined. It's an access issue for climbers, not unlike an access issue for munro baggers. 

But there surely needs to be a solution found. Demand is not going to reduce, and with a lot of parking spaces at the end now not an option, a lot of cars are going to have to try and get in a few spaces on that road.

2
In reply to Graham Briffett:

> Yes, a real shame either way, I really can't think of anywhere even remotely comparable now.

There's a couple I can think of which aren't too far off it, but I don't think I want to say where!

1
In reply to Robert Durran:

No, please don't! I can also think of one or two decent ones, but not with quite the same view as you got looking back to Coigach in the evening light. With a beer. And friends... sigh...

Post edited at 19:33
1
In reply to Graham Briffett:

> No, please don't! I can also think of one or two decent ones, but not with quite the same view as you got looking back to Coigach in the evening light. With a beer. And friends... sigh...

Skinny dipping at midnight the last night it was open......... so many wonderful memories of the place.

1
 kevin stephens 29 Jul 2021
In reply to DaveHK:

If you plan to go climbing but forget your shoes or harness that’s feckless. Why should forgetting the means to pay for parking be any different?

18
 Gary Latter 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Qwerty2019:

> Cant believe this isnt happening more often.  Farmers are having to put up with self entitled idiots all over the place.  If you think climbers are exempt from this, they are not.  Even on this site you get self entitled pricks discussing why they wont carry a few coins to pay for parking in the lakes.  Why they should be able to pay by telepathy and what not.  Dumping their cars on grass verges.

> The van life mentality is making communities lives a misery.  Climbers are making lives a misery.  Campers are making lives a misery.  Its absolutely every where you go.

> Take for example Robert Durrans comment (I think in jest)

> "There is a beautiful campsite not 3 miles along the road with excellent facilities and a restaurant and bar above it, what more could you want?"

> The old campsite.

> The new one is ugly, built on bulldozed platforms, is often midgy, overly commercial and has no beach to speak of.

> I don't go to places like Reiff for "facilities", pubs and restaurants 

> People would prefer to camp without permission in a farmers field, disturb his livestock and take a shite in a corner for his livestock to eat rather than pay a few quid for a provided facility.  If he is lucky they dont rip his fence up and use it for firewood.

> Now i am not suggesting Robert would do that, but plenty would and its now at critical mass time where i can understand the farmer, within the law just saying fcuk it.   Joe public is treating the great outdoors appallingly and its not just the Majorca loving minority.  Its those that claim to love the great outdoors.

What an appropriate username for a keyboard warrior - so outspoken and forthright in your opinions, yet happy to hide behind a faceless username and no profile - my, aren't I brave. Why don't you post your deliberately provocative and antagonistic comments under your own name. Nah, don't think you'll come out from under your mask of anonymity... Pathetic!

16
 Michael Gordon 29 Jul 2021
In reply to kevin stephens:

People tend to give things more consideration if they relate directly to what they want to do with their day and what they care about. If you're passionate about parking and that's your main activity for the day, then I can understand it being higher up your list of things to think about.

2
Message Removed 29 Jul 2021
Reason: inappropriate content
 DaveHK 29 Jul 2021
In reply to kevin stephens:

> If you plan to go climbing but forget your shoes or harness that’s feckless. Why should forgetting the means to pay for parking be any different?

I'd say if you forget your shoes that's forgetful. Or just an accident. No need for the pejorative terms or to leap to conclusions about people's character like them being entitled. Entitled seems to be something of a buzz word insult these days to describe any behaviour someone disapproves of committed by individuals or groups they don't know or identify with. It's just a lazy generalisation.

What you wrote was unnecessarily confrontational. To disagree one doesn't have to be disagreeable. 

Consider yourself rebuked.  

Post edited at 21:07
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 ScraggyGoat 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

Snap I can think of a couple as well….mums the word😁

 HardenClimber 29 Jul 2021

In reply to Alkis:

Last weekend we were caving on Fountains Fell (FOUL Pot) (great trip) and parked at Dale Head. There is an honesty box (£2 for the day) which we were going to 'use' (9 cars as we had come from various places). The farmer said thank you, but not to worry - since covid people had stopped carrying cash (or at least paying with cash) and he'd more or less given up checking the box.

We are quite keen to honour modest fees like that (as opposed to some of the fees large organisations charge - perhaps to pay for their card readers).

 StuDoig 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

Not far enough off it unfortunately, currently on holiday in Achiltibuie and huge number of vans about - based on the folk I've chatted to this week a fair majority are NC500ing but doing it over an longer trip to allow then to branch off for nights not on the direct route.  An Fuaran site is packed to the brim so not surprising folk are ending up in laybys etc.  A large open site like the old one would help massively at the minute I think (though I think it'd still be packed unfortunately).

I stayed at Sheigra a couple of months ago and much the same there - lots of NC500 folk and sadly only 1 other climbing lot I spoke to.

Definitely a sad loss when the old campsite closed.  As students we used to stay there every year post exams and some of my best memories from then and since are up in that area.

Hope you get better weather when your up then we've had this week though!

Cheers,

Stu

 Climb Psyched 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

I’m surprised it’s taken him this long to do it. 

He was unhappy when I met him in 2016. He ranted off most of what was copied into this post. I’d parked at the campsite so I was surprised I was still getting an earful. I told him I’d make MCofS aware of his concerns, which I did.  
 

Climbers are not going to stop visiting Reiff much to his disappointment. It would be great to see some kind of solution where he may even benefit from some parking charge or similar. 
 

Can’t be healthy to have stayed that pissed off for all those years. 

3
In reply to StuDoig:

> Not far enough off it unfortunately, currently on holiday in Achiltibuie and huge number of vans about - based on the folk I've chatted to this week a fair majority are NC500ing but doing it over an longer trip to allow then to branch off for nights not on the direct route. 

I drove round the whole of Applecross last Sunday afternoon and it wsan't as busy as I had feared (though I did meet a convoy of six tractors flying NC500 flags...... ). I even found a beach to myself only 100m from the road for a skinny dip.

> An Fuaran site is packed to the brim so not surprising folk are ending up in laybys etc. 

I'm booked in with some friends for 4 nights midweek next week. I booked six weeks ago. If they've lied about putting us all together I'll be furious.

> I stayed at Sheigra a couple of months ago and much the same there - lots of NC500 folk and sadly only 1 other climbing lot I spoke to.

I had a weekend there at the end of May. It was not busy at all and about half were climbers. I hoped it was far enough off the radar to escape the plague. Seems not.

1
In reply to Climb Psyched:

> Climbers are not going to stop visiting Reiff much to his disappointment. It would be great to see some kind of solution where he may even benefit from some parking charge or similar. 

A friend suggested he open the gate at weekends and allow parking on the grass for a couple of pounds.

 ScraggyGoat 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

Furious…. Better get it out you’re system before you go.  Last year I phoned to check they were taking canvas and had space for a tent.  Turned up and it was a free for all for camping (which normally I’m perfectly happy with). Just had to squeeze in where you could.  Maybe it’s changed, but to be honest it’s so busy they would struggle.  Also attitude from some residents of why are you turning up late evening.

Thinned out a bit mid week, so you might be lucky.

Post edited at 23:01
 ScraggyGoat 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Climb Psyched:

If it’s the same chap he was grumbling at the millennium!

 Jon Read 29 Jul 2021
In reply to ScraggyGoat:

That was certainly my experience earlier in the year (though it was a May bank holiday).

1
In reply to ScraggyGoat:

> Furious…. Better get it out you’re system before you go.  Last year I phoned to check they were taking canvas and had space for a tent.

I ought to be able to assume that one of their plots with room for all of us will have been set aside.......

I took an immediate dislike to the place when I called in just after it opened and it was explained to me that the £10 camping fee included "free" showers!  

12
 ScraggyGoat 29 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

I stayed when it was first open, before the grass had properly taken, and wished them well.  I naively assumed it would get the same clientele as the old site and have the same vibe.  How wrong I was, the lack of showers, power, hard standing and grey waste really did make for a self selected,  and laid back stress free, inter-mingling and chatty bunch of happy campers.

but credit is due to the new site staying open all year.

Post edited at 23:18
1
 DaveHK 30 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

> I took an immediate dislike to the place when I called in just after it opened and it was explained to me that the £10 camping fee included "free" showers!  

While I'm all for low cost, minimal facility camping £10 pppn is pretty good these days especially if you're not also having to pump 50p pieces into the showers. People need to make a living and the days of £3 pp camping have pretty much gone.

Post edited at 08:06
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 Fat Bumbly2 30 Jul 2021
In reply to Jon Read:

He lost me as soon as “minority ruining…. “ cropped up

3
 Fat Bumbly2 30 Jul 2021
In reply to kevin stephens:

You need more than a few now. 

In reply to DaveHK:

People need to make a living and also pay for the facilities that they have to set up. It costs for example a parish  council  close on £20,000 k a year to run a public  toilet with cleaning etc. I have no idea of the annual running and maintenace costs of for example a shower block at a campsite, but it is not a couple of hundred £'s.Just cleaning them for an hour a day costs money.

 DaveHK 30 Jul 2021
In reply to neilh:

>  I have no idea of the annual running and maintenace costs of for example a shower block at a campsite, but it is not a couple of hundred £'s.Just cleaning them for an hour a day costs money.

I saw a post from a farmer in Wales on another forum who'd set up a basic camping field with limited facilities, I think a toilet, sinks and chemical toilet disposal. The thread was about what constitutes a fair price. He said he'd like to have charged £5 per night in part to take pressure off roadside spots in the area but even with the limited overheads he had that would have meant running at a loss.

Post edited at 09:15
In reply to DaveHK:

> While I'm all for low cost, minimal facility camping £10 pppn is pretty good these days especially if you're not also having to pump 50p pieces into the showers. People need to make a living and the days of £3 pp camping have pretty much gone.

Oh I know it is a fair price, but given that I am totally happy with no facilities and don't like campsites generally, I just don't feel I am getting much, if anything, for my money.

18
 Gary Latter 30 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

> I believe that a few weeks ago the farmer got fed up with inconsiderate parking and blocked it all off, not just at the road end but for some way back along the road.

> Does anyone know what the current situation is? 

In the spring a few years ago we parked up in the long lay-by directly above the Stone Pig Cliff. As I was stepping over the fence, a woman stopped the car and uttered “there are lambs in that field”. I replied that there are lambs in practically every field in the highlands at this time of year.

She then complained about damaging the fence, saying there is a gate a few hundred metres further on towards the road end. I suggested that if she was so concerned about folk stepping over the fence, why not erect a stile?

I’ve been climbing regularly at Reiff since the early nineties. The previous farmer who lived in the last house by the parking was very friendly - often stopped for a chat. There’s even a wee route named after his dug! Otto. One time, we asked him how the dog was . “Otto died.” He invited us into the kitchen and showed us his new dog, lying in his basket. What’s his name, we asked? “He’s Otto 4.” He had Doberman’s for 35 years.

13
In reply to Robert Durran:

Are you sure you are not from Yorkshire???? ( joking)

1
In reply to HardenClimber:

Honesty boxes are different (you can drop a fiver or a tenner in there in a push), I am talking about commercial(/council) car parks. Or, actually, I did not want to want to talk about any of this here and derrail this discussion, it's just two people in here decided to get abusive about a discussion that happened a year ago, and I do not like reporting posts. To the dislikers, see how you like it if you have a discussion here and then someone decides to come in and refer back to people in that discussion as feckless or self-entitled pricks. That's alright, next time I'll just report the posts and see if they can just go blank, that will be such a better outcome... right?

8
 deepsoup 30 Jul 2021
In reply to Alkis:

> That's alright, next time I'll just report the posts and see if they can just go blank, that will be such a better outcome... right?

I don't know exactly what you're referring to - but yes!  It would be a *much* better outcome for a post that goes against the posting rules to disappear without attracting any replies than for yet another thread to spiral out of control into an utter shitshow, so please do use the 'report' button.

In reply to neilh:

> Are you sure you are not from Yorkshire???? ( joking)

No. I'm not sure why I am getting all the dislikes. Why would anyone feel happy feeling forced into paying for stuff they don't need or want?

4
 kevin stephens 30 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran: Unfortunately things have changed. Not too many years (decades?) ago climbing was a minority and hence low impact activity. We could go wild camping or use unregulated small sites in lots of places from the Midi Plan to Eric’s Cafe and I guess including Reiff.  Nowadays there are an awful lot more climbers, too many of who haven’t learned the importance of, or don’t care about consideration to minimise impact and maintain access. In some areas this has been exacerbated by non climbers also wanting to enjoy our wild places, whether in vans or disposable festival type tents without too wishing to pay for the privilege (or not able to get a booking). All this has led to a crackdown on “wild” camping and unregulated campsites. So it looks like we may have to compromise in sometimes using non optimum facilities to still be able to access the places we love, whether it be less pleasant campsite or carrying hordes of coins.

1
 deepsoup 30 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

> No. I'm not sure why I am getting all the dislikes. Why would anyone feel happy feeling forced into paying for stuff they don't need or want?

Oh?  I thought you were interpreting your 'dislikes' as a sign that your attempts to wind up the 'woke' are successful and wearing them as a badge of honour these days. 

(I have the likes/dislikes turned off btw, so only know you or anyone has them when they whinge about them.  Or celebrate them, whatever.)

You probably won't be interested in my opinion but that doesn't usually stop me giving it to you, so here's my guess:

£10 per night is a reasonable price for a camp site these days.  This summer especially.  A fiver does not go as far as it did a decade ago.

There are various fancy schmancy facilities on expensive 'glamping' and 'holiday park' type sites that it's wholly reasonable to be unwilling to pay for, and it's frustrating to find that those are the only kind of sites that seem to exist somewhere you're trying to find somewhere to stay.

Those kind of sites cost considerably more than a tenner a night though, and whether you want one or not a shower is not one of those fancy schmancy unnecessary facilities.

Post edited at 11:37
1
 deepsoup 30 Jul 2021
In reply to kevin stephens:

>  hordes of coins.

A hoard of coins.  It's people (or perhaps orcs) who come in hordes.

(That makes a refreshing change from lose/loose or break/brake.)

In reply to deepsoup:

> £10 per night is a reasonable price for a camp site these days.  This summer especially.  A fiver does not go as far as it did a decade ago.

Exactly..... I remember my first session at a climbing gym was £3 years ago, now £8 seems standard.

In reply to deepsoup:

> Oh?  I thought you were interpreting your 'dislikes' as a sign that your attempts to wind up the 'woke' are successful and wearing them as a badge of honour these days. 

Depends on the context. If I'm involved in a serious discussion then, naturally, I'm interested in why a post attracts dislikes. If I'm gently and humourously winding up humourless cyclists, then obviously their dislikes indicate success. No idea why you have brought "woke" into it.

> £10 per night is a reasonable price for a camp site these days.  This summer especially.  A fiver does not go as far as it did a decade ago.

>  ...........whether you want one or not, a shower is not one of those fancy schmancy unnecessary facilities.

It may well be necessary for a campsite to provide them to attract business and make money, but, along with other facilities provided by the new Reiff campsite, it is not something I need. I would prefer these facilities to be optional extras payable as such. But maybe this is impracticaI. It is like being unable to buy strawberries without also buying cream when I don't like cream with my strawberries.

17
In reply to Robert Durran:

I suspect the lack of cheap and basic camping in the highlands is in some ways a result of the permission and ease of (roadside) wild camping. Am not opposed at all to wild camping in principal- just reflect that it does make the sell for the £5-10 per night for a field and a loo trickier versus a £20+ per night for lots of onsite facilities. 

 kevin stephens 30 Jul 2021
In reply to deepsoup: I think “hordes” better reflects the despair of an earlier poster at the prospect of not being able to use his debit card to pay for parking 

4
In reply to kevin stephens:

> Unfortunately things have changed. Not too many years (decades?) ago climbing was a minority and hence low impact activity. We could go wild camping or use unregulated small sites in lots of places from the Midi Plan to Eric’s Cafe and I guess including Reiff.  Nowadays there are an awful lot more climbers, too many of who haven’t learned the importance of, or don’t care about consideration to minimise impact and maintain access. In some areas this has been exacerbated by non climbers also wanting to enjoy our wild places, whether in vans or disposable festival type tents without too wishing to pay for the privilege (or not able to get a booking). All this has led to a crackdown on “wild” camping and unregulated campsites. So it looks like we may have to compromise in sometimes using non optimum facilities to still be able to access the places we love, whether it be less pleasant campsite or carrying hordes of coins.

I agree with all of that - unfortunately things have changed.

I still generally only go to paying campsites (apart from the few very basic ones) if I am either with someone who insists on needing the facilities or with a larger group (as I am at Reiff next week). If I am, as most often, on my own or just a climbing partner, I can still get away with arrive late/leave early roadside car dossing; even in summer, it is still possible to find quiet spots with a little knowledge or imagination. I'm sure things are more problematical south of the border, I've not been south for more than 4 years and these days feel very inclination to do so!

I accept that £10 is the fair going price for most campsites with standard facilities these days, but that can really add up if away a lot - I'm planning to retire next year and so will be hoping to spend many more night away than I do at the moment and will need to tighten my belt a bit I think.

In reply to vscott:

> I suspect the lack of cheap and basic camping in the highlands is in some ways a result of the permission and ease of (roadside) wild camping. 

Might it not be the other way round?

In reply to Robert Durran:

> Depends on the context. If I'm involved in a serious discussion then, naturally, I'm interested in why a post attracts dislikes. If I'm gently and humourously winding up humourless cyclists, then obviously their dislikes indicate success. No idea why you have brought "woke" into it.

More of a chilled day today so I'll reply to this.

Is it beyond your comprehension that a subject you might find 'humorous' is pretty serious to somebody else? Say someone who'd been forced off the road by a psycho driver, picking up a minor injury that could have much worse, a driver ranting the same shit you were 'gently' winding people up with?

Branding strangers on the internet 'humourless', based on a short text exchange, is pretty assumptive and a bit unpleasant. They probs just have a different sense of humour to you.

Post edited at 12:16
8
In reply to kevin stephens:

An issue specific to climbers (but perhaps other groups too) is that we tend to make last minute decisions on where to go for a weekend according to conditions and weather, but booking a campsite at the last minute in summer is now really problematical in most areas - I've even not found it straightforward finding one in darkest Galloway for this weekend (climbing partner who likes to shower!).

 ScraggyGoat 30 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

Yes, agree the lack of cheap sites with good views feeds the roadside wild camping. For example if the old site was open there would probably be no climbers dossing at the end of the road (a dozen or more last time I looked), underneath Stac Polly and at Rieff.  Plus many others would use.

obviously there is the issue of return for effort, for the owners, but less facility means less overhead and possible less capex/debt.  

In reply to Mike Stretford

> Is it beyond your comprehension that a subject you might find 'humorous' is pretty serious to somebody else? Say someone who'd been forced off the road by a psycho driver, picking up a minor injury that could have much worse, a driver ranting the same shit you were 'gently' winding people up with?

Oh FFS. What utter bollocks. I humourously ranted about my own hatred of cycling (NOT cyclists). I went out of my way to make it clear that I think cyclists should be treated with proper respect on the road. You CHOSE to decide that I was anti-cyclists and inciting dangerous behaviour towards cyclists, and yes, I tried to humour you (obviously inadvisably in retrospect) by making a joke about this.

> Branding strangers on the internet 'humourless', based on a short text exchange, is pretty assumptive and a bit unpleasant. They probs just have a different sense of humour to you.

Well I seemed to get a remarkably knee-jerk humourless response from some cyclists for daring to express my dislike of cycling!

Post edited at 12:30
5
In reply to ScraggyGoat:

I guess there are planning rules for what constitutes a campsite these day in Scotland. Certainly in England there is a planning approval process to go through..via permitted use developemnts.

You can via a Caravan Club approval get round this via using that as a franchise.

But the days of just opening up a site anywhere you want have long gone.Like camping in the Pass for £1 next to the road.

Facilities have to be run by the owner, who  should not be earning a few £ an hour just because climbers do not want to cough up.The owner is more than entitled to earn a good living from that site, not pennies for their salaries.

Post edited at 12:33
In reply to Robert Durran:

> No. I'm not sure why I am getting all the dislikes. Why would anyone feel happy feeling forced into paying for stuff they don't need or want?

Maybe you could claim to be a Freeman of the Land and quote Magna Carta at them?

Post edited at 12:35
In reply to kevin stephens:

You're still at it I see.

7
In reply to Tyler:

> Maybe you could claim to be a Freeman of the Land and quote Magna Carta at them?

I might try that with the angry Reiff farmer.

 deepsoup 30 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

> humourless

Accusing others of humourlessness is a glass house/throwing stones situation for you.  (Let alone stereotyping an entire heterogeneous subset of the population as such.)  Very few people on here can successfully pull off "gently and humorously winding [people] up", you and I are not among them.  Just plain winding people up is not the same, and if a topic is serious for anyone then it is serious, you're not really entitled to declare that it isn't just because it isn't for you.

> But maybe this is impracticaI.

Yes it is.  And it's a bit ironic in a thread that has people getting humpty about the idea that they should carry coins for a parking meter to be advocating for coin-operated showers.  Nobody* likes coin operated showers on campsites.  (*Nobody else.)

Nor does any sensible person want to be charged extra for salt and vinegar in a chip shop, even if it would make a portion of chips 3p cheaper.  If you begrudge paying the same for your strawberries in a cafe as someone who has a bit of cream on them you're just being tight.

1
In reply to deepsoup:

> Accusing others of humourlessness is a glass house/throwing stones situation for you.  (Let alone stereotyping an entire heterogeneous subset of the population as such.)  Very few people on here can successfully pull off "gently and humorously winding [people] up", you and I are not among them. 

Well, as I said, the large and roughly equal numbers of likes and dislikes for my original rant suggested that I had pretty much hit the spot.

> Just plain winding people up is not the same, and if a topic is serious for anyone then it is serious, you're not really entitled to declare that it isn't just because it isn't for you.

Oh FFS. Don't be ridiculous. Can't you get my head round the fact that my rant was about my own hatred of cycling (NOT cyclists). The fact that despite that, it wound up some cyclists suggests that there is something a bit subtle going on; are some cyclists really so serious and sensitive about their sport that they get wound up by what was if anything self-deprecating? 

Post edited at 13:05
3
 deepsoup 30 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

> An issue specific to climbers (but perhaps other groups too) is that we tend to make last minute decisions on where to go for a weekend according to conditions and weather..

'Other groups too' in this case includes literally everybody who goes camping, it is a pain in the arse for anybody to have to commit to booking a place on a campsite before having a reliable weather forecast.  If anything it is more the case for someone who just wants to get the kids out of the house for a couple of days and maybe play on the beach than it is for a serious rufty tufty climber who imagines he somehow deserves preferential access to the outdoors.

Whingeing about how hard it is on you living up there in the Scottish highlands is unlikely to get you a ton of sympathy on here.  'Check your privilege' as we woke social justice warrior types often say*.

Also this summer, like last summer, is not normal.

10
 ScraggyGoat 30 Jul 2021
In reply to neilh:

I clearly stated that there was the ‘return for effort’ issue, the post highlighted that there can be differing business approaches to how to make profit from a site and the market.

sites that put in lots of landscaping, electric hook ups, lots of hard standing, paths, kiddie play areas, larger wash blocks and more, clearly have higher overheads, possibly have service loans and debt.  Consequently they have to charge more.  Sites like the old one near Rieff didn’t.

Just because one approach has expensive fees, doesn’t mean it’s making more money.

I would bet that if the old site was open and charging half the rate of the new one it would be as busy (or busier) , and probably be returning as much profit in real terms.  Even though it was ‘cheap’
 

In reply to deepsoup:

> 'Other groups too' in this case includes literally everybody who goes camping.

Nonsense. Loads of families book holidays months ahead.

 deepsoup 30 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

> Oh FFS. Don't be ridiculous. Can't you get my head round the fact that my rant was about my own hatred of cycling (NOT cyclists).

Your first post in that thread yes.  It's just as you describe it, perfectly innocuous and friendly.  Later on, not so much.  And this thing about how cyclists are all "humourless" - seriously, you'd do well to just drop that.

2
In reply to deepsoup:

> Whingeing about how hard it is on you living up there in the Scottish highlands is unlikely to get you a ton of sympathy on here.  'Check your privilege' as we woke social justice warrior types often say*.

Whoa there! Setting aside the fact that he doesn't live in the Scottish Highlands, just near them, why on Earth shouldn't someone who's chosen to live somewhere have a bit of a moan when things change dramatically and make it worse for them?

Yeah, hopefully the worst of it is temporary, but it's still a bit crap having the things you love, and have based major life decisions around, made harder to access.

The locals can, of course, say much the same - you probably don't choose to live in Coigach because you love crowds. Things are changing quite fast, some for the better and some for the worse.

In reply to Qwerty2019:

"Climbers are making lives a misery.  Campers are making lives a misery.  Its absolutely every where you go."

Not sure what this based on, but sounds like you need help

7
 deepsoup 30 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

> Nonsense. Loads of families book holidays months ahead.

At which point they just have to take their chances with the weather.  As could you. 

Climbers do not have a greater right to enjoy their holidays than anyone else.  Those of us lucky enough that we can just take off at short notice when the weather looks good don't have a greater right to be in a place than the ones whose work and family situations meant they had to book months in advance and got lucky.

2
In reply to Robert Durran:

We were up there a couple of weeks ago (with the Steins and some other mates) - most just cycled from Port a Bhaigh to avoid any bother, but as said there were a couple of spaces off the verge a wee bit before the road end. Even the big parking spot half way along the road was blocked off, though, so if you don't get in early you probably won't get in.

It was inevitable that the parking situation at Reiff would blow up one day. Hope it can be resolved positively for everyone.

The economics of campsite provision are fundamentally different in Scotland. Here we have a right to camp responsibly pretty much anywhere. This may perfectly well include roadside camping. So essentially the campsite owner either sells you something you can do for free (a tough proposition) or justifies the fee by provision of enhanced facilities. But the baseline cost for camping is zero.

In England (and presumably Wales) there’s no right to camp (with very few exceptions) so the landowners can charge whatever they can get away with.

I’m not familiar with the access situation in NI.

 deepsoup 30 Jul 2021
In reply to skog:

> Whoa there! Setting aside the fact that he doesn't live in the Scottish Highlands, just near them, why on Earth shouldn't someone who's chosen to live somewhere have a bit of a moan when things change dramatically and make it worse for them?

"Boo hoo.  The campsite costs a tenner a night which includes the cost of the shower, but I don't want a shower.  And it's full of people who booked their place months ago.  It's so unfair that I can't just turn up and stroll in."

I fully understand the frustration and I'm not saying he's not entitled to a bit of a moan.  He was asking why his bit of a moan had attracted 'dislikes'.  (Hence the subsequent derailment of the thread, moaning about dislikes does that.)

I can just pop over to Stanage any time the sun is shining, I have lots of free time and it's about a twenty minute drive from here - I wouldn't expect a huge amount of sympathy, especially from people with much less freedom who have to drive for several hours to reach their nearest bit of decent rock, perhaps the exact same crags, with a whinge about how the car park was busy when I got there on a nice sunny Saturday morning in August.

3
In reply to deepsoup:

> Your first post in that thread yes.  It's just as you describe it, perfectly innocuous and friendly.  Later on, not so much. 

I did, understandably get, as I am now, a little exasperated at behind branded, ridiculously, a threat to cycists.

> And this thing about how cyclists are all "humourless" - seriously, you'd do well to just drop that.

I didn't say all cyclists are humourless. But some (not all) did seem to have a humour blockage in that thread which I and others poked fun at.

4
In reply to deepsoup:

OK - but you know that Reiff isn't a 20 minute drive from Central Scotland, right?!

In reply to skog:

> We were up there a couple of weeks ago (with the Steins and some other mates) - most just cycled from Port a Bhaigh to avoid any bother, but as said there were a couple of spaces off the verge a wee bit before the road end. Even the big parking spot half way along the road was blocked off, though, so if you don't get in early you probably won't get in.

Thanks

In reply to deepsoup:

> "Boo hoo.  The campsite costs a tenner a night which includes the cost of the shower, but I don't want a shower.  And it's full of people who booked their place months ago.  It's so unfair that I can't just turn up and stroll in."

FFS. Nobody is saying it is unfair. It is just, unfortunately, not as good as it was. 

In reply to Robert Durran:

> In reply to Mike Stretford

> Oh FFS. What utter bollocks. I humourously ranted about my own hatred of cycling (NOT cyclists). I went out of my way to make it clear that I think cyclists should be treated with proper respect on the road. You CHOSE to decide that I was anti-cyclists and inciting dangerous behaviour towards cyclists, and yes, I tried to humour you (obviously inadvisably in retrospect) by making a joke about this.

No, towards the end of the thread you replied to me to defend David's quite ludicrous and serious assertion about cyclists holding up traffic. I asked if you were being serious, you said you were, then when your defence of David predictably failed you went back to the 'I was just trolling' excuse, which is basically an online version of a kiddies 'I had my fingers crossed behind my back'.

I think you probably are a courteous driver but unable to get your head round the fact that you are egging on the phscho cycling hating drivers. As I've been injured by one I obviously have strong feelings about that.

You are not the authority on humour or online etiquette you think you are.

3
 MG 30 Jul 2021
In reply to deepsoup:

> Your first post in that thread yes.  It's just as you describe it, perfectly innocuous and friendly.  Later on, not so much.  And this thing about how cyclists are all "humourless" - seriously, you'd do well to just drop that.

Nah,  it's quite entertaining.  It's also one of those "bingo" things - "no such thing as road tax", "don't have to use bike lanes", "two abreast isn't illegal", etc.

2
In reply to Robert Durran: 'The leave nothing but footsteps' quote is an environmental thing.... you are allowed to leave some wonga at tourist destinations!

1
In reply to deepsoup:

> At which point they just have to take their chances with the weather.  As could you. 

But I don't have to. As I said, as a scummy climber, when alone or just with a climbing partner, with a bit of effort, knowledge and imagination I can work round it. This is obviously much harder for most families to do. I only booked ahead and took a chance with the weather for next week because we are a bigger group going away together for a sort of special occasion and I don't think it appropriate for six or seven people to be sitting around socialising in the evening at a roadside campsite just now.

Post edited at 14:17
In reply to Mike Stretford:

> 'The leave nothing but footsteps' quote is an environmental thing.... you are allowed to leave some wonga at tourist destinations!

No idea what you are on about.

2
 deepsoup 30 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

> FFS. Nobody is saying it is unfair. It is just, unfortunately, not as good as it was. 

FFS you were asking, apparently quite sincerely, why your whinge might have attracted 'dislikes'.

That many other users of this site are rather worse off than you are and therefore might have seen it as a tad tone deaf is as good a theory as any.

3
 Michael Gordon 30 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

> I took an immediate dislike to the place when I called in just after it opened and it was explained to me that the £10 camping fee included "free" showers!  

£10 a night is a fair price nowadays, if that is what they still charge. I agree that when it opened c10 years ago it seemed pretty excessive.

In reply to deepsoup:

> FFS you were asking, apparently quite sincerely, why your whinge might have attracted 'dislikes'.

Well I hope not because they think that I think it's unfair when I don't and didn't say I did.

Post edited at 14:32
3
In reply to Michael Gordon:

> > I took an immediate dislike to the place when I called in just after it opened and it was explained to me that the £10 camping fee included "free" showers!  

> £10 a night is a fair price nowadays, if that is what they still charge. I agree that when it opened c10 years ago it seemed pretty excessive.

Yes, it was double the old campsite for a far inferior place and a shower. My objection was to the word "free" when they clearly weren't that - effectively £5 for a shower whether yiu wanted one or not!

5
 Michael Gordon 30 Jul 2021
In reply to deepsoup:

> Nor does any sensible person want to be charged extra for salt and vinegar in a chip shop, even if it would make a portion of chips 3p cheaper.  If you begrudge paying the same for your strawberries in a cafe as someone who has a bit of cream on them you're just being tight.

But really what is it with those bloody 25p sachet things for ketchup? Along the same lines as the above, I'd much rather they provided it on the counter. 

In reply to All:

I don't blame them for doing this, even though it's a shame. Relations between people who live in certain secluded areas and tourists (including climbers) have been souring for some time due to the behaviour of a small but growing number of people. Imagine living at Neist Point for example, nightmare at this time of year! We are living in a time when a significant minority feel that they can do and say what they like regardless of the cost to others. It's very hard not to get angry but I believe the best bet for any sort of resolution is to at least keep talking to people, so fair play to the person that took the trouble to speak to Kim.

 

 ScraggyGoat 30 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

As an aside many posters were hoping that Mountaineering Scotland might ‘represent us’ and mediate.

I suggest people go and look at their Twitter feed and Monthly update.

Not a single mention of access either in the form of warning members of sensitive situations, not a single mention of negotiation or engagement, not a single campaign tweet to remind land owners of their responsibilities under SOAC.

Lots about wiping ones bum, that lightening can be frightening, that when it rains rivers rise, how to responsibly camp, not to forget your water proof, that it’s a bit hot, and other such ‘education for numptees’ 

but useful representation……oh look tumbleweed

1
 Michael Gordon 30 Jul 2021
In reply to Rich W Parker:

The trouble with Neist and many other Skye hotspots is surely sheer weight of numbers, not dirty camping etc from a small minority. Thankfully this isn't generally the case with the mainland but overly successful marketing ploys such as the NC500 certainly haven't helped.

 deepsoup 30 Jul 2021
In reply to Michael Gordon:

> But really what is it with those bloody 25p sachet things for ketchup?

Ugh!  And it's not even the 25p, they're just every kind of wrong.  Bring back the traditional greasy spoon big squeezy tomato with horrible crusty bits around the cap!

In reply to Michael Gordon:

Unfortunately it's both. You often find people parked up in the parking spaces on the way to Neist and I'm currently looking at 4 tents, but expect to see another 10 plus by the end of the evening, on the other side of Loch Dunvegan, just passed the castle. English Bank holiday there was over a hundred people car and van camping in passing places and common grazing at the same spot. I'm often picking up bags of discarded rubbish from the side of roads around here. However, I would also say it is clearly a minority that have no respect for the area and leave their litter. 

In reply to Mike Stretford:

> No, towards the end of the thread you replied to me to defend David's quite ludicrous and serious assertion about cyclists holding up traffic. I asked if you were being serious, you said you were, then when your defence of David predictably failed you went back to the 'I was just trolling' excuse, which is basically an online version of a kiddies 'I had my fingers crossed behind my back'.

There was a digression away from the humourous tone of the thread to discuss the fuel consumption caused by being held up by bicycles. It should have been perfect obvious that I was making it clear that my contribution to that specific digression was serious. I also made it clear that I was not defending David's overall position but just trying to see whether he might have a point in a specific scenario.

> I think you probably are a courteous driver but unable to get your head round the fact that you are egging on the psycho cycling hating drivers.

That is, frankly, quite ridiculous and downright offensive shite. You should be ashamed of yourself for trying to paint me in such a light. 

7
 Michael Gordon 30 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

> There was a digression away from the humourous tone of the thread to discuss the fuel consumption caused by being held up by bicycles.

I didn't see the thread but that cracks me up. I salute your unintentional humour...

Anyway, back on the subject of camping, I get the impression that there may be a split between those north and south of the border on this issue. Here in Scotland we are in the process of losing, or at least fear losing, something of great value to many of us. Something which England has never had, or at least perhaps largely forgotten having. I wonder whether there is a lack of understanding or maybe just envy of the value of the freedom we are used to in Scotland.

6
In reply to Robert Durran:

> No idea what you are on about.

You come across as a bit tight, not wanting to spend any money on hols, so a little piss take. Some might say 'humourless' ... but I'd say just different to mine.

1
In reply to thread

A big load of fuss here about things beyond control. 

There was once a campsite, the owners closed it. There is another one that could be used but it is not cool enough for rufty tufty climber types,it has nice things. 

There was parking but it has been obstructed due to poor behaviour by the users. Outrageous that villagers may want to get on with their lives while you climb. 

Behaviours are funny things, no one admits to them. We are all perfect parkers, campers, van users etc. Evidence suggests quite the opposite. 

7
In reply to Robert Durran:

> There was a digression away from the humourous tone of the thread to discuss the fuel consumption caused by being held up by bicycles. It should have been perfect obvious that I was making it clear that my contribution to that specific digression was serious. I also made it clear that I was not defending David's overall position but just trying to see whether he might have a point in a specific scenario.

The last post I saw from you was 'the gift that keeps on giving ' with reference to our conversation. You wanted it both ways and still do.

> That is, frankly, quite ridiculous and downright offensive shite. You should be ashamed of yourself for trying to paint me in such a light. 

I'm not as I've said I've had to bear the brunt of it. I'd be ashamed of winding strangers up for my own amusement and slinging insults like 'humourless' around, but there you go.

Post edited at 17:45
2
 MG 30 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

Having spent about 50/50 of my life in England/Scotland, I think I know the situation in both quite well. I suspect you have a point.  Quite how empty a lot of Scotland is (or was) in comparison is not much appreciated in England.  That said, if you are discreet, you can in practice wild(sorry)-camp in England.  Also Scotland has only recently had laws formally allowing access, rather than tradition.  I think these may need refining - perhaps something like no camping within 500m of a road, for example.

4
In reply to Mike Stretford:

> You come across as a bit tight, not wanting to spend any money on hols, so a little piss take. Some might say 'humourless' ... but I'd say just different to mine.

No, just don't know what Wonga is.

2
In reply to Mike Stretford:

> The last post I saw from you was 'the gift that keeps on giving ' with reference to our conversation. You wanted it both ways and still do.

Bollocks. Yes, I found most entertaining. A cyclist posted just to keep it going and said that the thread was a "belter".

> I'm not as I've said I've had to bear the brunt of it. I'd be ashamed of winding strangers up for my own amusement and slinging insults like 'humourless' around, but there you go.

I wouldn't expect a humourless cyclist to see the humour in poking fun at the humourlessness of cyclists.

But whatever. Just don't you dare go on accusing me of inciting behaviour that endangers cyclists. It is inexcusable.

6
 deepsoup 30 Jul 2021
In reply to MG:

> Quite how empty a lot of Scotland is (or was) in comparison is not much appreciated in England.

I'm not sure that's really true. 

If anything I think the issue with inconsiderate parking, 'wild' camping etc. is something almost the opposite to that - it's people travelling to a relatively 'empty' place and failing to realise that empty as it seems there are still people living and working there.

Conversely I think there is sometimes an issue with rural people feeling that they're being hard done by having to cope with the stress of someone whose name they don't know parking within 200m of their front door whether they're actually causing a problem or not.  I think it's quite understandable that someone who lives in a city might find it hard to empathise with a rural resident who regards half a mile of local authority maintained adopted highway as their own personal property.

> That said, if you are discreet, you can in practice wild(sorry)-camp in England.

And in quite a few places if you're not it seems.  (Wales too.)  There are a few spots in the Peak that rival some of those on the shores of Loch Lomond unfortunately.

And of course the situation with camper vans parking up in lay bys (and sometimes leaving bags of rubbish and jobbies behind when they go) is just the same South as it is North of the border.  That's allowed by default unless there's a bylaw specifically banning it in that particular place.

Post edited at 18:36
1
 MG 30 Jul 2021
In reply to deepsoup:

I see what you are saying.  I was getting more at the whole concept of being allowed to camp where you want (as long as you don't take the piss).  

 deepsoup 30 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

> Just don't you dare go on accusing me of inciting behaviour that endangers cyclists. It is inexcusable.

It's more an observation than an accusation and not only is it not inexcusable, it's actually quite justified.  That is what happens when you push those old "dont pay road tax" "always jump the lights" "riding two abreast" "slowing down the traffic" tropes.  Whether you're 'only joking' or not.

Nobody is accusing you of doing it deliberately and maliciously.  (Nor even for any kind of personal gain - as I said in that thread, you're no Clarkson.)  It's just thoughtlessness.

1
 MG 30 Jul 2021
In reply to deepsoup:

> It's more an observation than an accusation and not only is it not inexcusable, it's actually quite justified.  That is what happens when you push those old "dont pay road tax" "always jump the lights" "riding two abreast" "slowing down the traffic" tropes.  Whether you're 'only joking' or not.

Possibly.  But no has done that on either thread.

In reply to MG:

> Possibly.  But no has done that on either thread.

Thete was someone else who wheeled all that out in a transparently humourous way.

 deepsoup 30 Jul 2021
In reply to MG:

> I was getting more at the whole concept of being allowed to camp where you want (as long as you don't take the piss).  

Yes of course.  I was nitpicking a bit, but I thought the distinction was important enough to be worth pointing out.

I'm always a bit torn when the idea of similar rights applying to camping in England/Wales comes up for discussion. It seems like a great idea in principle, but you can't help thinking it could easily be a it of a disaster.  As you say, it's actually not that hard to 'wild' camp in England and Wales (outside the areas where it's officially sanctioned) anyway. 

You don't have the same rights if you're confronted by a landowner who wants you to GOML, but that hardly ever happens if you have a bit of nous and you're not taking the piss anyway.

Post edited at 19:08
In reply to Robert Durran:

> No, just don't know what Wonga is.

Slang for money.

In reply to Robert Durran:

> But whatever. Just don't you dare go on accusing me of inciting behaviour that endangers cyclists. It is inexcusable.

I'm sorry you are offended, I don't think you do this deliberately, but yes I think there is a drip drip effect of anti-cyclist comments which give some the idea it's ok to have a pop at us. After being attacked by a car I am low on tolerance... and you did catch me on a busy day!

If there is a hatchet I'd be more than happy to bury it, but a little understanding on your part and an acceptance that someone who doesn't share your sense of humour isn't humourless would go a long way.

Post edited at 19:16
2
In reply to Heartinthe highlands:

> Should be fine if you arrive by bicycle, Robert. 😊

Taking my sea kayak, so might be able to launch at the campsite and bypass the road, bike, farmer, walk and everything🙂

In reply to Mike Stretford:

> I think there is a drip drip effect of anti-cyclist comments which give some the idea it's ok to have a pop at us. 

There may be in some quarters from some people but I really don't think the stuff in a clearly light-hearted UKC thread is going to do any harm. I do accept that you might be sensitive to this sort of thing though.

> If there is a hatchet I'd be more than happy to bury it, but a little understanding on your part and an acceptance that someone who doesn't share your sense of humour isn't humourless.

I am sure you are not humourless in general.

Happy to bury the hatchet anyway.

1
In reply to deepsoup:

> I'm always a bit torn when the idea of similar rights applying to camping in England/Wales comes up for discussion. It seems like a great idea in principle, but you can't help thinking it could easily be a it of a disaster.  

Given the greater number of people in England, I am sure it would be a disaster - you only have to look at the problems Scotland is now having. And I would not be at all surprised if we end up having greater regulation in Scotland. 

Better to stick with it being officially not allowed and accept a bit of stealth camping.

1
 RobAJones 30 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

> Taking my sea kayak, so might be able to launch at the campsite and bypass the road, bike, farmer, walk and everything🙂

Sounds like a good plan, provided your sea kayaking ability is better than your claimed bike handling 😊

1
In reply to RobAJones:

> Sounds like a good plan, provided your sea kayaking ability is better than your claimed bike handling 😊

At least kayaks don't have gears. Those oar things can be confusing though.

 FactorXXX 30 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

> At least kayaks don't have gears. Those oar things can be confusing though.

Oars on a kayak?
Think you might be talking rowlocks again...

 RobAJones 30 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

> Those oar things can be confusing though. 

Was that you in going off course in Olympic rowing ?

Hope you have a skeg, those rudders can be counterintuitive, which foot do you press? 

Post edited at 22:14
1
 kevin stephens 30 Jul 2021
In reply to Robert Durran: so you, Seansoup and me are all sea kayakers, that means we can all be friends after all. And camping from our sea kayaks is a sure way to avoid conflict hassles. 

 deepsoup 31 Jul 2021
In reply to kevin stephens:

> And camping from our sea kayaks is a sure way to avoid conflict hassles. 

Can't argue with that.  You never see a sea kayaker having a moan on the social media about a bird ban, mardy anglers, camping hassles or the price of parking do you?

1
 Albion 31 Jul 2021
In reply to Qwerty2019:

I'm sure if the idiots who camp in farmers fields and making a nuisance of themselves knew what they were facing they would certainly think twice about camping near livestock. Farmers don't dip as much as they used too and these people stand a very good chance of picking up a few Lyme infested ticks for their troubles. I for one would never dream of wild camping in the Highlands. Its just not worth the risk.

Post edited at 20:46
16
 DaveHK 31 Jul 2021
In reply to Albion:

>  I for one would never dream of wild camping in the Highlands. Its just not worth the risk.

Wow, what are you basing that on? 

Does camping create a greater risk than walking or any other outdoor activity?

Post edited at 21:12
 Albion 31 Jul 2021
In reply to DaveHK:

Of course! The ticks don't have to be capable of climbing E10 to get to you either. I've had plenty of these unwelcome visitors over the years without any problems but these days there are a much higher proportion of them carrying the disease. It's just not worth the risk. A good well maintained campsite well away away from any kind of stock or deer must be the preferred option. I've noticed that many farm campsites in Snowdonia for example have sheep grazing amongst the tents. This should made illegal even though the incidence of Lymes is much lower in Wales than the Scottish Highlands.

12
 DaveHK 31 Jul 2021
In reply to Albion:

I get plenty of ticks in the Highlands just being out and about climbing, running etc. I've never noticed picking up more after an overnight camp perhaps because I tend to camp in short grass. I've got no doubt Lyme is a dreadful thing but I'm not going to live in fear of it or stop doing the things I love.

1
 Cog 31 Jul 2021
In reply to Albion:

>   A good well maintained campsite well away away from any kind of stock or deer must be the preferred option.  

People get ticks in their gardens which have no stock.

 Gary Latter 31 Jul 2021
In reply to Albion:

> Of course! The ticks don't have to be capable of climbing E10 to get to you either. I've had plenty of these unwelcome visitors over the years without any problems but these days there are a much higher proportion of them carrying the disease. It's just not worth the risk. A good well maintained campsite well away away from any kind of stock or deer must be the preferred option. I've noticed that many farm campsites in Snowdonia for example have sheep grazing amongst the tents. This should made illegal even though the incidence of Lymes is much lower in Wales than the Scottish Highlands.

I guess you haven't tried using an effective repellent then? I think you're getting things a little bit out of proportion here. We've been using Permethrin spray last couple of years, and found it particularly effective in keeping the wee bastards at bay. Spray on trousers, socks and boots, lasts for fair few washes.

This is what we use:

https://www.tiso.com/tiso-lifs-1081298/lifesystems-ex4-anti-mosquito-fabric-spray-no-colour-tiso-lifs-1081298

 Albion 31 Jul 2021
In reply to Cog:

That's because of the massive increase Highland tick population. They are now no longer confined to mainly Woodland environments. There is also increasing concern about their spread to the Islands, places where up until fairly recently there have been very few problems.

Post edited at 00:01
6
 Albion 01 Aug 2021
In reply to Cog: That's because they are no longer confined to mainly woodland habitats. There is also increasing concern about their spread to the Islands. And because up to 10% of them are carrying Lymes Disease they are certainly worth avoiding.

1
 Doug 01 Aug 2021
In reply to Albion:

One of the first cases of Lyme I knew about (1980s) was a researcher on the Isle of Rum (unlikely she caught it in Cambridge where she also worked)

 Lankyman 01 Aug 2021
In reply to Albion:

Can you please print a warning leaflet and put one behind the wipers of every campervan in any lay-bys you pass?

 Albion 01 Aug 2021
In reply to Doug:

And I spent a lot of time on Rassay and Skye in the 1980s without encountering one tick. It's studies at the Universiry of Glasgow that have charted the increase throughout the Islands. And I'm not one to deny the results of their carefully observed studies. 

 Albion 01 Aug 2021
In reply to Lankyman:

Well maybe if the campervan people made their way up to Latheronwheel or Sarclet they would certainly find somewhere to park.They would also find some pretty fine sea cliff climbing that certainly has the edge on Rieff. Rieff is pretty good but I've always regarded the place as a kind of Stanage by the sea.

 Cog 01 Aug 2021
In reply to Albion:

There were plenty of ticks on Mull in the 60s.

 IceBun 01 Aug 2021
In reply to ScraggyGoat: perhaps the folk to be contacting in this context are Highland Council who have a responsibility in this area https://www.highland.gov.uk/outdoorhighlands/info/6/your_countryside_rangers/5/your_countryside_rangers_and_access_officers 

The issue is a wider one than climbers, though we are clearly a part of the issue and, sadly, have been for many years.

Post edited at 09:25
 DaveHK 01 Aug 2021
In reply to IceBun:

I'm not sure that parking falls under access officers remit?

In reply to Albion:

I share your view. Reiff is good but not drive from Cumbria solely to visit good. A good poor weather option if in the area (which is a high probability event). 

1
 IceBun 01 Aug 2021
In reply to DaveHK: one way to find out. Councils have been involved in a host of “parking” issues post lockdowns as widely reported in the media so no harm in taking it to them. I will do so later today. Contacts are in here https://www.outdooraccess-scotland.scot/access-management-guidance/contacts

And this gives an idea of their remit https://www.gov.scot/policies/landscape-and-outdoor-access/public-access-to-land/ some of which might apply in this case.

Post edited at 10:09
In reply to Albion:

> That's because they are no longer confined to mainly woodland habitats. There is also increasing concern about their spread to the Islands. And because up to 10% of them are carrying Lymes Disease they are certainly worth avoiding.

the figures from the NorthTick project and the research on the Western Isles (Uist), suggest a 3% occurrence in some isles compared to a 1% occurrence in the mainland. Also, the majority of ticks in the inland areas of the Highlands are in wooded or more sheltered areas so the incidence is actually less in more open areas. 

Anecdotally, the occurrence of Lyme is also regional. For instance, it seems that Glen Finnan has a high occurrence of Lyme whereas in the Glen Coe and Glen Nevis areas you're less likely to encounter Lyme carrying ticks. 

From the North Tick research, the South West of England and the Norfolk and Suffolk areas are on a part with areas of the Highlands (there's a map somewhere online). 

The idea that you're more likely to get Lyme when camping is quite frankly ludicrous and goes against the known behaviour of ticks. Unless you're lying on open ground with a tarp, you're actually safer in your tent than you are walking around. Ticks questing on the tips of overhanging bracken or grasses are the ones that will typically get you so unless you're not going to walk anywhere in the Highlands you're going to encounter them regardless of camping. 

If the ticks were as bad as you suggest, every mountain guide would have had it multiple times but that doesn't seem to be the case. Be careful (Permethrin, Smidge plus modifying behaviour and checking regularly) and your risks are pretty low. It doesn't stop me wanting to camp in my back yard anyway! 

 65 01 Aug 2021
In reply to Albion:

> And I spent a lot of time on Rassay and Skye in the 1980s without encountering one tick. It's studies at the Universiry of Glasgow that have charted the increase throughout the Islands. And I'm not one to deny the results of their carefully observed studies. 

I wouldn't deny UofG's findings either but an individual's (you or me) experience over time doesn't count for much.  I've spent a good deal of the last 4 decades in tick infested environments all over the highlands and despite taking zero precautions against them have had 5 or 6 ticks in that time.  I'm one of a lucky few whom they don't seem to like.  I believe there has been an increase in the prevalence of Lymes over the past two decades however.  I'm not sure what this has to do with parking at Reiff though.

 wbo2 01 Aug 2021
In reply to timparkin: 3% of what?

 Albion 01 Aug 2021
In reply to Presley Whippet:

Caithness certainly gets less rain and its well worth the hike. Maybe places like Sarclet though are a bit too challenging for the average craggers  who now seems to like their sea cliff to reflect the sterility of the climbing wall environment. As for me a bit of lichen, vegetation and birdshit etc add to the spice.

6
In reply to RobAJones:

> Hope you have a skeg, those rudders can be counterintuitive, which foot do you press? 

Thinking about it now, I'm honestly not sure. Like a screwdriver will require trial and error.

 DaveHK 01 Aug 2021
In reply to Albion:

> Caithness certainly gets less rain and its well worth the hike. Maybe places like Sarclet though are a bit too challenging for the average craggers  who now seems to like their sea cliff to reflect the sterility of the climbing wall environment. As for me a bit of lichen, vegetation and birdshit etc add to the spice.

This comes across as elitist. Reiff is a great place to build skills and very far from a sterile experience and lets be honest, Sarclet isn't exactly St John's Head for adventure either!

Post edited at 22:47
In reply to DaveHK:

> This comes across as elitist. Reiff is a great place to build skills and very far from a sterile experience and lets be honest, Sarclet isn't exactly St John's Head either!

Reiff and Sarclet are both brilliant in their own ways. Comparisons are daft. We are lucky to have the variety. 

And to compare Reiff with Stanage is criminal. Who wants a view of a cement works when you can have the Hebrides?

 DaveHK 01 Aug 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

> Reiff and Sarclet are both brilliant in their own ways. Comparisons are daft. We are lucky to have the variety. 

> And to compare Reiff with Stanage is criminal. Who wants a view of a cement works when you can have the Hebrides?

Absolutely. And Stanage is good too! Most crags have got something going for them. Apart from Balmashanner Quarry obviously.

Post edited at 22:46
 StuDoig 02 Aug 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

Eeek, I'd be prepared to be furious...........   From the last time I was there it wasn't possible to reserve areas / pitches for tents so down to luck if you can get a group together and it was very busy last week.  Hope you manage though!

 Misha 02 Aug 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

There are two separate issues here.

Camping - there are plenty of lay bys within a 20 min drive for vans and car camping. As long as people don’t leave litter and use a portapotty or bury it, there is no real issue. The official campsite is nice but has limited capacity.

Parking - this is always going to be an issue at weekends / during the holidays. Parking further away and cycling might be the only option. However I’d have thought that an enterprising farmer / local might permit parking on their land for a reasonable fee. The issue is that there aren’t that many suitable spots but there are some. Perhaps the locals don’t really want lots of visitors. Having said that, half the cottages seem to be holiday lets anyway...

1
In reply to StuDoig:

> Eeek, I'd be prepared to be furious...........   From the last time I was there it wasn't possible to reserve areas / pitches for tents so down to luck if you can get a group together and it was very busy last week.  Hope you manage though!

When I phoned on Friday I was assured there would be plenty of space for us all to be together. I'm not holding my breath.

Situation today is that the parking at the end of the road is thoroughly blocked off with old farm machinery and strictly no camping notices on the gate. Much parking for about half a mile back down the road is blocked off by rocks or has no parking notices. Rocks could be rolled away mostly if you felt strongly, but would not help matters. Still some parking spots, but I think most of them would be a bit "cheeky" in my opinion but some being used. I can imagine things very tricky at a weekend and best to cycle from further probably.

Anyway, doesn't affect me because I'm a sea kayaker now. Climbing is so 2020.

Campsite not as mobbed as feared and I secured space for group of 7 by arriving lunchtime Monday (I imagine turnover is high on a Monday after weekend).

Extraordinarily midge free despite overcast and still🙂.

 DaveHK 03 Aug 2021
In reply to Robert Durran:

Thanks for the update.

In reply to wbo2:

> 3% of what?

of 100%

i.e. 3% of ticks have lyme


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