Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Camping trip in the Yorkshire Dales | Rukins Park Lodge

We set off on our road trip early in the morning with the car full to bursting with us and all our camping gear. Now I'm the first to admit I'm more of a glamping girl than a camping girl but Craig absolutely loves camping and being outdoors so we meet in the middle and compromise. We have all of the bases covered, plush sleeping bag, air bed, camping stove, tea making facilities and most importantly a good tent. Now if I had my way we'd have a canvas bell tent like this one I snapped at our campsite, a girl can dream right? 

We had a couple of things we wanted from our campsite, Craig wanted to be near water, in a remote location, be allowed to have a camp fire and I wanted the campsite to have toilets. After searching on Cool Camping we decided on Rukins Park Lodge a spot right in the heart of the Yorkshire Dales and next to a river. We invited some of our friends along and set off on the long drive.

The drive up to Keld was more picturesque than any of us could have imagined. I've made many a trip to the Dales over the last few years but I'd never been off the beaten track like this before. This was literally the heart of the Yorkshire Dales, no civilisation for miles with the exception of tiny villages and lonely farm buildings. The villages were post card perfect - everywhere you looked was a photo opportunity.

When we arrived at Rukins Farm we were greeted with a warm welcome by the owner Barbara. There are all the facilities you need on site as well as a small tea room and shop selling essentials. We paid for our pitches, grabbed some fire wood then headed down to the river to set up camp.

We pitched right by the river and to our amazement we were within a minutes walk of a waterfall - the setting was quite simply stunning. It felt a million miles away from the usual chaos of life.

After we'd explored our surroundings and set up camp first things first and in true Yorkshire style a cup of tea was in order.

We chatted the night away and after having dinner we started up the camp fire, toasted marshmallows and watched as the stars came out one by one.

We awoke with the birds the following morning and after a slight disaster with breakfast we packed up and set off towards Hawes, a small market town just down the road and home to the largest single drop waterfall in England - Hardraw Force. We had to stop along the way to take in the incredible scenery - simply breathtaking.

You access Hardraw Force via the Green Dragon, a 13th Century Inn packed to the rafters with charm and its very own dozing cat in front of a roaring fire.

After going through the inn you only have a small walk until you reach the beautiful waterfall.

After taking everything in we strolled back to the car feeling thoroughly content and more than a little sad that we had to leave the Yorkshire Dales behind.

Even if camping really isn't your thing, with the right camping essentials and a setting as perfect as Rukins Park Lodge I'm sure that you will have a thoroughly enjoyable, peaceful and restorative weekend in the Dales.

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