This photo essay is about a state of mind, a feeling. It is about connecting with the wonder and force of mother nature, leaving the city behind for a while and pitching a tent somewhere in the wilderness. As the immortally wise Walt Whitman said, it is good for us to ‘grow in the open air’ and ‘eat and sleep with the earth’ and these photos hope to capture some of that - some of the intangible, wonderful wanderlust.
This collection contains 20 incredible photographs of tents, snuggled into well-known places and remote places - surrounded by mountains and forests, pegged down in some beautiful locations and looking out over empty landscapes. Many thanks to all the delightful photographers for sharing their beautiful compositions.
After seeing photos such as this one, it's not difficult to believe that Sarek National Park is often called Europe’s last wilderness, and Johannes has caught a beautiful moment, with the moon rising up over the landscape and his red, reflected tent adding to the sense of adventure and mystery.
Árni had some interesting tent tales, having bought the tent in the image below five years ago, and at every new place taken a photo - in all seasons, be it snow, summer days or storms. As you can likely imagine, he has accumulated a great collection. This particular one was taken near Mt. Strútur, when he ‘spent there a night in the wilderness, north of glacier Mýrdalsjökull. The snow is covered with an ash from the volcano Grímsvötn that erupted two months earlier. The river is named Brennivínskvísl, which means "Vodka-river“ in English (but it's just clear water).’
Taken somewhere within the 44,258 acres of mountainous emptiness that is the Buckhorn Wilderness, which can be found on the northeastern Olympic Peninsula. Established in 1984, its tallest peak stands at 6,988 feet (2,130 m) and there are endless, gloriously isolated places to pitch your tent.
Crater Lake is best known for the amazing clarity and colour of its water, which is a deep, endless blue. The deepest lake (592m) in the United States, there are no rivers flowing in or out of the lake, which was formed the the collapse of a volcano, and the compensating evaporation by rain and snow happens at such a rate that all the water is replaced every 250 years.
It was difficult not to love the description Patrick wrote to accompany this photo: ‘When I had arrived in Ashford Washington, and Rainier base camp, I had no idea where I was going to sleep for the next two days. Like much of my trip I was playing it by ear, but the only difference is that this time I was somewhere I knew no one. I had to do what I do best, and that is make friends! Fortunately everyone on my Summit For Someone climbing team was awesome and my new friend David was kind enough to offer me tent space at the campsite he had reserved for the weekend.
Of course I came with beer to show my gratitude. It’s funny how when you are in the forest and you share a common interest, communication with someone you don’t really know at all becomes so easy and fluid. I love nothing more than sitting around a fire with a few beers and stories to tell. Now I am getting all nostalgic for my weekend in Ashford. Well, here is to meeting more folks around the campfire!’
We couldn’t resist yet another from-inside-the-tent photo, as the good ones manage to be both nostalgic and wanderlust-inducing - it was difficult to refrain from filling half of this photo essay with Luke Gram’s magnificent adventuring photographs. And there isn’t much more that can be added to Pico Iyer’s quote below, but his TED talk might just reignite the travelling flame (that is if it’s not already a burning fire).
Camping never looked better, pitched on the shores of Lake Superior - the largest of the Great Lakes in North America. Also the largest freshwater lake in the world, if you’re going by surface area, and it has a fascinating history full of shipwrecks and lava and the first people who settled there after the last Ice Age, 10,000 years ago.
Some view. Often camping trips end up as a random assortment of everything, you overpack or you underpack and it takes a while to figure out what the ultimate adventuring list looks like.
This otherworldly sunrise is looking towards Mount Kita, the second tallest mountain in Japan at a not entirely insignificant 10,476ft. Technically two men and two tents, but views like this don’t come around all that often, and they should definitely be remembered and recorded.
Pitched on the edges at Slieve League, a mountain of nearly 2,000ft on the Atlantic coast with some of the highest cliffs in Ireland. It is a wild, stunning place - naturalist Robert Lloyd Praeger wrote in 1939, ‘The traverse of this ridge, the "One Man's Path", is one of the most remarkable walks to be found in Ireland - not actually dangerous, but needing a good head and careful progress on a stormy day....’
Not a bad place to wake up to. This great National Park in the North West of England contains all the land in the country higher than 3,000 ft above sea level, and is home to a long list of lakes, meres, waters, tarns and reservoirs. Although there is a good chance of rain at pretty much any time of year, the landscapes in this part of the country are rugged, wild and ideal for microadventures.
Small tents within the dense forest landscape, captured from above while horse trekking in Songpan county, which has an economy mostly made up of agriculture and livestock raising, although tourism is encouraged by the authorities, and Songpan acts as a kind of gateway to the beautiful Jiuzhaigou nature reserve and national park in the North.
Silvan wrote a wonderful description of the story behind his photograph: ‘We were on a hiking trip in the wilderness of South Greenland, and after a long walk of about 7 hours (not that long, but with a heavy backpack of 30kg it's quite long) we reached the Fjord of the Glacier ‘Eqalorutsit Kangilliit Sermiat.’ We saw this place very early this day and were really impressed of the view, the environment and everything around... a very beautiful place, even more after 7 hours walking. After set-up our tent and preparing our meals, the sun was in the correct angle... so that our nice tent was nearly invisible and part of the landscape... quite a nice view. Together with the Glacier view, a perfect moment after a hard day out there.’
Almost a kind of surrealist landscape, this unassuming tent is pitched in a tiny agricultural village in the southwest of Turkey, close to the ancient ruins of Olympos. Although very small, the village has a beautiful 3.5km secluded beach, which is protected by the WWF as a home of rare sea turtles.
Taken while on a 4th of July camping trip to the shores of Lake Michigan, which is home to 12 million people (mainly in the Chicago and Milwaukee areas), although with the shore stretching 2,636km in length there wouldn’t be too much trouble finding a secluded spot somewhere, and a couple of suitable trees to hang a hammock.
One man and his tent, looking towards adventure. Occupying 1,693 km² within stunning landscapes, reaching into three Norwegian counties and including much of the mountain range of Dovrefjell, this national park was formed in 2002 to replace and enlarge the previous one, which had been established in 1974.
We tried to canvas your opinion before creating this photo essay but the responses were poles apart... however, if you felt that we pitched it well - perhaps you could tweet this post and @mention any tent-loving friends who you'd also peg as being of the adventurous sort.
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