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Dark Sky Campsites


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Back from Kielder campsite. Midge central but no bites, although I've probably poisoned myself with repellent. Despite the insects and mud, a well maintained site with decent facilities and pleas

All the nice dark sky sites seem to be in Wales or the North of the country, we have nothing as dark as that in the SE even though we probably get less cloud and rain. Carole  

It is a small world.  Since we visited, that camp site became more popular than usual due to Covid. It was booked up all summer. ☹️ On Monday 14th September I'm off to Kielder Campsite for three n

This weekend I went to Low Greenside Farm in Cumbria. Easy to get to via the M6 and a single, quality A road. Open 31st March to 1st November.

According to Clear Outside, it's Bortle 3, SQM 21.75. Unfortunately the weather didn't play ball, but in between clouds, the sky view compared to my usual urban observing was astounding.

The site only has 20 mostly flat, non electric tent pitches, but each pitch is around 10 metres in size and they're about the same distance apart.

I took the 102mm Mak, but due to the aforementioned poor weather, it stayed in the car boot and the 10x50s were used.

It's a great camp site with fantastic reviews and we will happily visit again.

Pitchup.com - Low Greenside Farm

 

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I camped on Shell Island, West Wales coast near Harlech Castle last August ... I crawled out of my tent for a leak at 2am and was completely stunned by the panorama of the Heaven’s like I’d never seen it before .... each pinprick star in the Milky Way and beyond visible with the naked eye .... clear as a bell. 
Caught a chill gawping in wonder for so long.

Sand/grass site, loads of space with nooks and crannies amongst the dunes for privacy and Groups.

P.S. There’s a beautiful beach there too, ideal for swimming ... but watch out for the jellyfish in seasonal spells. The naturist section of the beach is a fair walk south if you need to finely calibrate your telescopes during the day from the top of the dunes!

Link to details and pics:  https://www.shellisland.co.uk/camping.html

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On 20/07/2020 at 10:51, ScouseSpaceCadet said:

This weekend I went to Low Greenside Farm in Cumbria. Easy to get to via the M6 and a single, quality A road. Open 31st March to 1st November.

According to Clear Outside, it's Bortle 3, SQM 21.75. Unfortunately the weather didn't play ball, but in between clouds, the sky view compared to my usual urban observing was astounding.

The site only has 20 mostly flat, non electric tent pitches, but each pitch is around 10 metres in size and they're about the same distance apart.

I took the 102mm Mak, but due to the aforementioned poor weather, it stayed in the car boot and the 10x50s were used.

It's a great camp site with fantastic reviews and we will happily visit again.

Pitchup.com - Low Greenside Farm

 

+1

That's where we go too. The yurt is a great option, stayed in that a year ago.  This year we camped, I had 2 decent nights and the rest cloudy.  If you get good weather it’s a great place for Astro.

Small world!

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16 hours ago, Alkaid said:

+1

That's where we go too. The yurt is a great option, stayed in that a year ago.  This year we camped, I had 2 decent nights and the rest cloudy.  If you get good weather it’s a great place for Astro.

Small world!

It is a small world.  Since we visited, that camp site became more popular than usual due to Covid. It was booked up all summer. ☹️

On Monday 14th September I'm off to Kielder Campsite for three nights solo camping. Steve the manager was emailed before booking, explaining I was a solo amateur astronomer and got a good deal. 🤫

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2 minutes ago, ScouseSpaceCadet said:

It is a small world.  Since we visited, that camp site became more popular than usual due to Covid. It was booked up all summer. ☹️

On Monday 14th September I'm off to Kielder Campsite for three nights solo camping. I emailed Steve the manager before booking explaining I was a solo amateur astronomer and got a good deal. 🤫

Kielder is one of my favourite places to camp and unwind. Coming up from the Midlands it"s a nice drive once I reach the Lake District too. Of course there's the forest, Kielder Water and the observatory as well as really dark skies. Saw the Aurora for the first time from Kielder.  My wife is more than happy to get rid of me for a few days too!

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1 minute ago, faulksy said:

hi paul. yes they do. its as dark as a dark thing there. they are getting dark sky status as well

That is brilliant thanks Mike I am going Bala end of October but I will save this for next year.

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2 minutes ago, wookie1965 said:

That is brilliant thanks Mike I am going Bala end of October but I will save this for next year.

head for the top of lake vynwy paul, around 5 miles from bala. bortle 2 mag 22 there

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3 hours ago, wookie1965 said:

That is brilliant thanks Mike I am going Bala end of October but I will save this for next year.

It's lovely around there. Hopefully the rain stays off!

The last week in October, we're booked into a campsite in Thornthwaite, the Lake District. It's only Bortle 4 SQM 21.65, but nestled between Bassenthwaite and Derwentwater it looks nice.

This year I'm prepped for winter camping after falling short in the Peaks last time. A better tent, warmer bags and clothes sorted. 👍

There's a campsite open all year an hour and fifteen minutes drive, on the edge of the Forest of Bowland that looks an interesting spot for the odd overnighter.

 

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Adding to the post above, if you are heading to the Lakes, the campsite near to Bassenthwaite village is nice and a short brisk walk, down hill I think, to the village pub. A long time since I had been there, but fairly out of the way. Just a mention for anyone heading to Kielder campsite. I was there recently on a day hike with family, no breeze, the native midges, well my lips for example, had lumps the size of marbles. Hopefully they will soon start to diminish but do consider a midgey head net, smidge, smoke coil, whatever it takes, just in case there is no breeze.

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26 minutes ago, ScouseSpaceCadet said:

It's lovely around there. Hopefully the rain stays off!

The last week in October, we're booked into a campsite in Thornthwaite, the Lake District. It's only Bortle 4 SQM 21.65, but nestled between Bassenthwaite and Derwentwater it looks nice.

This year I'm prepped for winter camping after falling short in the Peaks last time. A better tent, warmer bags and clothes sorted. 👍

There's a campsite open all year an hour and fifteen minutes drive, on the edge of the Forest of Bowland that looks an interesting spot for the odd overnighter.

 

Peter I will look into that as well cheers. 

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4 hours ago, faulksy said:

head for the top of lake vynwy paul, around 5 miles from bala. bortle 2 mag 22 there

Not been for a while (and was my pre astronomy days so I wasn't looking for sites) but it was all trees from what I remember.
Where is a good spot there?  Do you have coords?

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11 hours ago, globular said:

Not been for a while (and was my pre astronomy days so I wasn't looking for sites) but it was all trees from what I remember.
Where is a good spot there?  Do you have coords?

anywhere away from trees. a few laybys around

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I've been meaning to give Wimbleball Lake campsite a go for some time now - its in the Eastern part of Exmoor National Park not far from the M5 so travelling from Herts should be straightforward. They seem to be quite stargaze friendly and even have a link to a telescope rental service on their website...

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