“You do not need to fly to the other side of the planet to find wilderness and beauty.” These are the words of Alastair Humphreys, inventor of the micro adventure. His philosophy is simple: You don’t need a lot of time, money or equipment to get out of your every day life and have an adventure. Grab a couple of things, ride out of town after work, sleep surrounded by nature, and ride back early in the morning. You’ll be “crumpled, but happy,” Alistair says.
The idea of spending some quiet time away from the stress of the city is getting more and more popular, the community of micro adventurers is constantly growing. One of them is Thomas. During the day, he is helping his customers in his sports clothing shop to find the perfect sneakers. After turning off the lights, once or twice a week he’ll leave the city, camp somewhere in the forest and be back in the morning – just in time to open the doors and greet the first customers.
We had a little chat with Thomas and asked him how to plan a micro adventure and what you need to consider before you do wild camping.
What are you taking with you on a micro adventure?
Since I am mostly camping just for one night, I try to take the least possible. Apart from the usual things I take with me on a bike tour, I’ll bring a good lamp, my sleeping bag, a ground pad, pillow, tooth brush, extra clothes and a camping stove. I’ll buy food in the last super market before I’m out of the city. When it’s supposed to stay dry, I’ll leave the extra clothes at home. Oftentimes I also leave the tent at home and sleep at a viewing tower or hiking hut.
Is it allowed to sleep outside?
Personally, I’ve never had any problems with wild camping before, which might be because I often don’t take the tent with me. It’s allowed to sleep outside without a tent pretty much anywhere in Germany. Sometimes it’s even allowed to pitch a tent if you are not traveling motorized. But we should never forget that in nature, we are only guests and should behave accordingly. If you follow that rule, you probably won’t have any problems with foresters.
How do you find the places you sleep at?
I either passed them on an earlier tour during daylight or find them in tour descriptions in mountain bike forums.
Are you going to camp outside in the winter?
Definitly. I have planned a couple of tours with my fat bike for this winter already.
The photos in this article are from Thomas’ recent tour from Berlin to Pätzer Kiesgrube: