ISSUE 58  |  On the Mountain

Wild Huts: The World’s Best Campsites

February 05, 2013 12:00 PM

BY Michelle Slatalla

Share This:

A year ago, Scottish blogger Kevin Langan was sitting at home "warm in my central heated family home; the biggest decision I’ve made all night is whether I should have one pop-tart or two for my supper?" This is not how he wanted to spend the rest of his life. He embarked on a grand adventure to travel the countryside to build 100 tiny huts made from the land—twigs, leaves, moss—and to sleep one night in each. Here's how it's going so far:

Photographs via 100 Wild Huts.

"In all honesty I want to feel afraid; I want to abandon the sanitized sterility of urban life and find a true type of contentment down amongst the moss and mud," wrote Langan, who recently built Hut No. 15 next to some pre-war concrete bunkers on Dalmeny Estate in Edinburgh. After foraging for branches, he and two friends built a pyramidal rhombus with three sleeping platforms. For more information, see 100 Wild Huts.

Above: Using a small wood-handled ax he bought from a local hardware store, Langan lashed some branches together using bark and some biodegradable garden twine.

Above: Like the 14 previous wild huts he built and designed, he slept in this one in a sleeping bag. "I want to experience the fear of being alone on a cold, dark wet winter’s night. I want to learn how to feel comfortable resting beside worms, biting insects, scurrying rodents, noisy birds or if I’m lucky – an inquisitive fox," he wrote.

Above: Langan, who works for architecture firm 3Dreid, built each of the wild huts to different specifications. The two-man triangular pod (above) was Wild Hut No. 13, built in the Mugdock Woods north of Glasgow.

Above: Hut No. 13 covered with moss.

Above: Hut No. 12, dug out of the sand on the northeast coast of Scotland, with driftwood supports. "This particular overnight experience was a lesson on how to cope with beasties," wrote Langan. "I crawled into the hut for a look and was confronted with heaps of skipping flies and bugs. I scooped out handfuls and tossed them up into the wind for a pleasant journey elsewhere."

N.B.: For another unusual campsite, see "Little Cargo Container in the Big Woods."