Latest campsite information (5/31/13).
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Naturist camping is basically camping in a natural setting in the natural human state - naked.
Why camp naked? Why not? The whole point of camping is to get away from civilization and back to nature. Clothing is part of that civilization; a neccessary evil in our current out-of-balance society. Baring your whole body to the sun and air allows you to appreciate nature to a much greater degree than is possible when you are covered with cloth. Even shorts feel out of place when you are really in touch with nature in the wilderness.
Naturist camping is not as outlandish as one might think, and it's certainly not erotic or perverted. In fact, naturist camping can be a wholesome Family activity. It is experiencing nature the way God intended us to. (If He had wanted certain body parts covered, He was quite capable of designing the body with those parts covered. The fact that He didn't shows that there is nothing inherently offensive about our bodies.)
Naturist camping does require getting a little off the beaten track and using some common sense. We do have to share the outdoors with clothing-compulsive people who in general will not be understanding of our enjoying nature naturally. The idea is not to just enjoy ourselves and "tough luck" to anyone who doesn't like it. That attitude could easily result in enough complaints to our legislatures to result in simple nudity being made illegal in Florida, which it currently isn't. (A few counties (particularly Brevard, Seminole and now Hernando) have made it a crime to be nude within their county.) With a little consideration and common sense, we can share the great outdoors with the clothing-compulsive culture.
An overnight naturist camping trip can be as revitalizing as a good vacation. If you're skeptical, try it! It is possible to get compeletely away where you're not likely to encounter anyone, or if you're not the rugged pioneer type, there are naturist parks where you can camp with all the amenities of any commercial campground. Florida is blessed with a number of naturist clubs, most of which offer camping. Pasco County alone has five major clubs, and several smaller ones.
Click here to find out about these.
If you choose the "wilderness route", some general tips are given below. These are not written in stone, but will increase your chances of an enjoyable wilderness naturist camping experience. It is assumed that you already have some camping experience.
If not, click here for the Camping Tutorial
When possible, avoid weekends and holidays. Since most people are off work on the weekends and holidays, that's when you will find most people out in the wilderness. If you can arrange your schedule to go on weekdays, or use some of your vacation time, try to plan your naturist trips during the week.
Go places which require some effort or inconvenience to reach. If you can drive there in your car, it's pretty much a given that others will do the same. Going out of your way will leave the vast majority of casual or leisurely campers behind. (The remaining ones tend to be more accepting of casual nudity - there's not too many serious wilderness campers who HAVEN'T at least skinnydipped at some time.)
Some remote sites are perfectly good for naturist camping even on weekends.
Click here for photos of some actual naturist camping in Florida.
When camping on a river, try to avoid the main channel. Otherwise everyone using the river will have to go right by your site. Chances of offending someone or being harassed are pretty high. The same can be said of a main hiking trail. Here you literally should get off the beaten path.
When in State or National Forests (as opposed to State or National Parks)avoid camping during hunting season. Human skin and deer hide are not that different in color. Also, some of the Forests only allow camping in established (aka crowded) sites during hunting season.
In general, State Parks and National Parks are more restrictive about camping than State and National Forests. Usually outside of hunting season,in the Forests you can pretty much camp anywhere. (Not so in the Parks, generally.) Being able to get off the beaten track helps reduce the likelyhood of non naturist visitors.
When bare hiking or canuding, it is safest to assume that passersby you meet will not be comfortable seeing you nude. Use some common sense. If you hear children's voices, keep in mind that non-naturist parents are likely to be offended that you are nude in front of their children (most likely the kids will find it funny). Usually if you are observant, you can dress or get out of sight by the time the passersby arrive. But if you are taken by surprise, don't act as if you are doing something shameful and hide. Try to be friendly and casual. Sometimes a little tasteful humor will defuse the situation. It's better that they consider you a little crazy than have them think you're a pervert.
When canuding, keep a towel within reach and listen for approaching traffic. Motoring nude requires you to be more watchful than canuding, since you probably won't hear other boats approaching, or voices on shore.
For more info on canuding, click here.
When bare-packing (bare backpacking), keep a pair of elastic shorts or a towel readily available on the outside of your pack. You should be able to put them on in a few seconds without taking off your pack.
For more on bare-packing, click here.
A lightweight sign saying something like "Nudist area ahead", or "Nudist area today" can be very useful for your campsite. If the sign can be placed somewhere that it can be read before people actually see you, then you have properly advised (maybe even prepared) them before they encounter you. Using this technique, I have had people visit who were not offended and were actually even friendly, sometimes even conversing at length.
For the last several years, I have camped almost exclusively in the nude. Using the above techniques, no one has harassed me in any way, nor has anyone "stomped off" offended - the responses have either been nuetral (or at least casual) curiosity, or even partial or complete acceptance. Once in a while, someone camping or boating nearby has stopped and skinnydipped nearby after having seen me or my sign. (After all, skinnydipping is good clean fun.)
By making sure you do your naturist camping responsibly, you may even find yourself making "converts" out of clothing compulsive campers you may meet. This has happened more than once with me.
|My wife Patty is trying to get used to the wilderness camping thing, but she's not comfortable being photographed nude. Here we are in the Ocala National Forest.|
Naturist Camping Trip Reports with Photos
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