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Grizedale Campsite Bowkerstead Farm

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      03.10.2012 09:46
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      Campsite in the Lakes

      The main reason for my recent camping trip was because my friends and I were going to PicnicCinema which is an event that shows films in special locations around Cumbria. We were going to see Close Encounters of the Third Kind which was being shown on an outdoor screen in the middle of Grizedale Forest. As this was the main reason we wanted to find somewhere close to where the film was going to be shown. After searching the internet we settled on the Grizedale Campsite at Bowkerstead Farm. The campsite is located a couple of miles from the Grizedale Visitors centre and about half a mile to the village of Satterwaite. The site is located on a working farm and consists of two different areas. There is a large field which is for larger tents and a wooded area for smaller tents. The wooded area also has some wooden camping pods and some yurts As we had a four man tent we were in the field. When we arrived we saw the farmer who owns the site milling around and told him our name that we had used while booking and he directed us to the field and told us we could pitch our tent wherever we liked. He offered to take our gear down to the field for us but as there were four of us we didn't really feel that we needed any help. The field is really large and although there were about 20 tents scattered about the filed we managed to find a pitch that was away from most of the other tents and offered some semblance of privacy. The location is really idyllic and the field is surrounded by woods and there is even a stream on the site. I really thought it was beautiful and our pitch on top of a little hillock ideal and offered us fantastic views. We went for a wander around the site and the wooded area with the camping pods was particularly nice and I am definitely planning on going back to the camp site and staying in a pod next time. Facilities at the site are a little limited. There were a couple of showers and toilets up at the farm as well as a little room with a vending machine where you could get coffee etc. This room had the added benefit of having an electric outlet in case you want to charge your phone or any electrical equipment that you might have brought with you. The toilets and showers were clean and there was hot water which is all you can expect from a campsite really. There are no electric hook-ups on site so don't bring any electric camping equipment with you or otherwise you won't be able to use it. What the site does offer is the chance to have an open camp fire and you can buy wood onsite which the farmer will bring right to your tent for you. The price for the wood was really reasonable and only cost £2. There is a local pub in the village which serves food and is an easy 10 to 15 minute walk from the camp site. We were asked when we arrived if we would be wanting to eat there as it only works on bookings and the farmer was going to phone up and book us in. The times for serving food are also quite limited and it only serves from 7:00 until 8:30 so if you want to go there for a meal make sure and mention it to the farmer so that he can book the table for you. We arrived back from the film at around about 11 o'clock and being in the countryside obviously the entire place was pitch black but we could see the campfires around the site which really did make for a nice view. The rules of the site call for quietness after midnight but when we arrived back it was already quiet and although nearly all the tents had a campfire and people sitting around them there was no rowdiness or music playing and it was all really relaxing and very idyllic. You are pretty much left to your own devices when at the site so it falls upon the people staying to have some common sense and not to do anything to upset your fellow campers. From what we experienced it seems as though most people followed the rules and played fair which was nice to see. I'm not an experienced camper so sleeping out in the open was a bit of a novel experience for me but one that I thoroughly enjoyed. I slept a lot better than I thought I would and the sound of the countryside and the stream next to our tents was really relaxing and enjoyable. The farmer who owns the site is really nice and goes out of his way to be helpful and make sure that your stay is a pleasant one. When we were leaving we went to settle up and he actually charged us less than what his quoted prices were. When we queried why he just told us it was because we had all shared the one tent. We thought that this was really good of him as the prices quoted were £7 per person per night (and £3 per child) which we already thought was excellent value. I really can't think of anything negative to say about my stay at Bowkerstead campsite. Yes the facilities maybe aren't as extensive as some but I think that the location and the price more than makes up for this and besides having no electric really does make you feel as though you are properly camping and getting back to nature. I thoroughly enjoyed my stay and wouldn't hesitate to recommend it to anyone looking for a campsite in the Lake District.

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