The phenomenon known as extreme camping is exactly what the name suggests: inventive and daring ways to bring one’s camping game to the next level. It’s not a sport, exactly, just new ways to expand upon traditional tent-pitching. This kind of camping is for a mixture of the adventurous and fool-hardy, and not for those seeking a particularly good night’s sleep. Given that this is still a relatively new trend, there is still much room to pioneer other ways spend a night in nature -although, as with most things, a little common sense goes a long way. Who said the sky had to be the limit?
This is a form of camping most used by climbers who spend multiple days on a single climb. Although a hammock will do in a pinch, cliff camping has become normalized by portaledges, which are essentially collapsible metal frames that support industrial fabric and the weight of one person. The portaledge is then anchored to the side of the cliff above and below. The best advice we can give is to not look down.
Credits for this twist on tent camping go to Chris Fietzer and Brian Wurster of TravellingFeetz for their very unusual campsite in Guam. The pair kept the fully set-up tent on the ocean bottom with rocks and a slit on the top. Their experience was all-inclusive, complete with lawn chairs, a hammock, and even a token pile of rocks for a fire pit. It should be noted that Fietzer and Wurster both used scuba tanks and equipment to turn underwater camping into a reality.
High Altitude Camping
Perhaps the most renowned high-altitude campsite are Mount Everest Base Camps; South Base Camp being located in Nepal and North Base Camp being located in Tibet. Campsites at such heights are characterized by strong gusts of winds, freezing temperatures, and a propensity to give campers altitude sickness. The best tips we have for avoiding altitude sickness are hydration and taking the necessary time to acclimate to the heights.
This is only available on a select few safaris in the midst of the African savannah that take place over the course of several days, like the Nambiti Game Reserve. Safari camping is regular tent camping, save for the armed drivers keeping watch through night-vision goggles. Although your’e unlikely to encounter a lion; hyenas, dingos, mongoose, and gazelles, and even elephants are common fare.
Treetop camping is arguably the type of extreme camping with the most breathtakingly spectacular views, at least so far. Similar in concept to cliff camping and the portaledge, extremists achieve sleeping in the treetops by securing the top of their tent to a particularly sturdy tree branch before climbing the tree and lowering themselves from the branch into the tent. The higher, the better. Anyone unafraid of heights wanting to try this should reinforce their tent and make absolute certain it is heavy-duty enough to support the weight of multiple people and camping gear for an entire night beforehand.