- Nude In The Grand Canyon (3/6/21)
The Arizona Wildflowers is an informal, nonlanded naturist club. Unlike most other nonlanded clubs, it doesn’t hold events at private homes or landed clubs. Instead, according to its long-time naturist leader, Bev Price, the idea is to create “my own nude ‘beach’ in any number of venues, both alone and with others in relatively large groups”. This philosophy is sometimes called “free-range naturism” – enjoying nonsexual nudity anywhere outdoors where it’s legally and physically safe to do so.
Arizona, of course, is a large state with many wide-open spaces and much natural beauty. (It also has a reputation for valuing individual freedom.) The Grand Canyon is certainly its best-known natural attraction. Price has “done 11 trips in the Grand Canyon – with as many as 35 other nudists each trip – since 1999.” The trips include rafting and camping at suitable beaches along the river – fully nude. Non-naturists who choose to camp close to a naturist group are “pragmatic” and Price’s policy is “I don’t ask them to take their clothes off if they don’t require that I put mine on.”
This sort of free-range naturism can also include “free hiking” on any of the numerous trails in the state, skinny-dipping in creeks and streams, or houseboating on Lake Powell. Price considers such possibilities to be impromptu nude “beaches”. Currently recognized actual nude beaches have begun when nude use becomes common enough. Unless there are specific local regulations, nudity is usually legal in most U.S. National Forests and Bureau of Land Management areas – such as the Magic Circle (also in Arizona). If you don’t live in Arizona, check out your closest National Forest to find a place for your own personal “nude beach”. (First read about naked car camping.)
- What’s It Like To Visit A Nudist RV Park? (5/29/21)
Are you a naturist who owns an RV or camping trailer? You may live somewhere the closest naturist parks with the facilities you expect aren’t inconveniently far away. Or maybe you just like traveling to visit new and interesting places. If so, you’ve probably already visited one or a number of naturist resorts or campgrounds that have suitable facilities. Even so, you might want to visit others in order to meet new people.
If you’ve already enjoyed naked car camping, you might sometimes want to enjoy the outdoors nakedly, but not “roughing it” without homelike amenities (comfortable beds, electricity, wi-fi, etc). You may therefore be considering purchasing or renting an RV or trailer. If so this article will help you know what to expect.
An RV/trailer owner having little or no experience with naturist camps and resorts may want to know what they’re really like, both in terms of facilities and general ambiance. This article provides a better idea about such places, especially the more upscale ones. Some are probably even more luxurious than non-naturist places, with things like swimming pools, spas, tennis courts, gyms, and even decent restaurants.
There’s yet another possibility, variously known as “boondocking” or “dispersed camping”. This is where you park your RV or trailer in a location remote or secluded enough to allow for nudity. There are even online directories like Boondocking.org that provide advice on known sites. In this case, there are no amenities, so you have to rely on just what’s in your rig. A slight variation on that is private properties – especially farms – that allow parking for a modest fee. They may or may not have hookups for water or electricity. And, of course, you’d have to confirm that nudity is OK with the owner. The next article offers one example.
- Life at Yorkshire’s naked campsite run by naturist farmers – and the daft things people say about life in the nude (6/26/21)
Here’s an excellent example of a naturist campground on a private farm. Such things may be more common in the UK and some other European countries than in the U.S. They tend to be fairly simple and unpretentious, since they’re usually run by people who own a relatively small farm and have typically been naturists for years. There will be, at least, places to park an RV or trailer. There may also be hookups for water and electricity, and possibly showers and toilets too. Of course, the more amenities the higher the price. But that’s going to be considerably less than at a more developed campground. Since the hosts are usually naturists, they and their families may welcome socializing with visitors. Many or most family members may be naturists too.
The Wood family – Colin, Carol, and their daughter Angie – have been naturists for over 40 years. When Angie was only two the family visited a nude beach for the first time. They found the naturists there quite welcoming and friendly. They checked out various naturist groups around the country and found the people equally amiable. So why not go all in, and start their own naturist camp? That dream was fulfilled in 2000 when they established Candy Farm Campsite at their farm near Blaxton in the UK. The camp was a quick success because of all the naturist friends they’d made over the years. It remains popular, and a number of special naturist gatherings and festivals have been held at Candy Farm.
The bit about “daft things people say” simply refers to the misunderstandings and misconceptions most people who’ve never tried naturism have about it.
- How I Spent an Afternoon at a Wisconsin Nudist Farm (8/20/21)
England is by no means the only country where working farms welcome naturist visitors for one or more days. They also exist in the U.S. Naturist nudity is enjoyable almost anywhere it’s allowed and sensible – especially if it’s encouraged and there’s an opportunity to meet like-minded others. A rural farm can provide a refreshing naked experience of nature – perhaps even better than an established naturist resort where humongous RVs and travel trailers are packed within 10 feet of each other in a parking lot.
Owners of small farms who may be naturists themselves are happy for a source of additional income and the opportunity (if they’re naturists) to meet others who enjoy social nudity. The main problem is just finding one, since they’re generally not affiliated with a naturist organization or listed in a typical directory. Perhaps the best way to find such a place is to ask around at traditional naturist clubs and resorts. Another way is through websites such as Sekr that list a plethora of potential choices. But determining which of those welcome naturists may require a phone call.
Amanda, the writer of this article, was invited by a female friend to accompany her on a visit to a nude farm in Wisconsin the friend frequented. Although Amanda expected that being naked among strangers usually meant sex, her friend assured her that the Toadally Natural Garden was absolutely not such a place. In fact, the owners performed background checks as do most naturist places on new visitors. And the owners themselves that afternoon wore only T-shirts, while most other visitors wore less. So with respect to attire, this could have been any typical naturist place. Summarizing her experience, Amanda wrote: “I was surprised at how relaxed I was naked around so many strangers. Everyone had been so friendly, and I felt less self-conscious chatting with them without any clothes on than I often did when I was clothed.”
- Germany: Best destination for nudist camping! (7/9/21)
It’s good news when a mainstream online camping site actually writes about naturist camping possibilities. But the problem for U.S. naturists is when the possibilities are in the UK (above item) and Germany, not here. Still, for U.S. naturists who enjoy both foreign travel and RV camping, there’s a lot to like in Germany, where modern naturism originated. Over there, many campsites provide areas where you can be naked as much as you want. And naked camping away from crowded resorts and beaches has its own allure.
The article lists 8 German campgrounds to consider – just a small selection out of many, but presumably worthy of recommendation. Of course, you’ll have to rent a campervan over there, but a link for arranging the rental online is provided (and includes means for choosing and reserving a particular campground in Germany and other European countries). The same site also has pages for naturism camping in France and Croatia – where naturism is also popular. So you’re in luck if you enjoy traveling but are discouraged by the limited options in the U.S. for naked camping.
- Four lessons from the clothing-optional hot springs (6/6/21)
Back in the nudity-averse U.S., some possibilities for being naked in the great outdoors are often overlooked – natural hot springs for example. Unfortunately, the best possibilities are only in limited areas. California and Colorado may have the most choices. Yet there can be drawbacks, even if clothing is optional. Some places allow nudity only near the actual springs, but not in other parts of the property. Even worse, some insist on separate areas for men and women. (Like Japanese onsen in recent times.) Why so persnickety? Well, it’s the U.S., after all. But, fortunately, that’s not always the case. The brief article here is about Orvis Hot Springs in Ridgway, Colorado. As the writer notes, “It’s co-ed. And people opt in or out with whatever combination of towel, wrap or swimsuit they choose.”
In the article, Barbara admits “All my life I’ve loved the feel of swirling water against bare skin.” Hot springs are the perfect place for that. The water’s never too cold, so if it’s not too hot (over 104°F) you can stay in it as long as you want. They’re often located in places of great natural beauty. And others at the clothing-optional places simply couldn’t care less if you’re naked.
Barbara does offer some good advice about hot springs etiquette. To paraphrase: (1) If others don’t share your preference to be naked, don’t hold it against them. (2) Look others in the eye when speaking to them. (3) Don’t feel too uneasy if others have body “enhancements” like unusual piercings or outre tattoos. (4) You might enjoy alternating between the hot springs and cold water plunges (if available).
- Do I Need to Wear a Swimsuit in a Backcountry Hot Spring? (11/19/21)
If you’re actually in the backcountry, away from (so-called) civilization, whether or not you’re naked shouldn’t matter, right? Well, of course not, but in many places (especially in the U.S.) it can matter. Wearing anything at all makes even less sense in a secluded hot spring than when hiking or camping in an equally secluded location. Nevertheless, most of the same considerations apply. If you’re naked somewhere the chance of being seen unexpectedly by others is truly quite unlikely, then don’t worry too much. Especially if you’ve heard from other naturists that the location is very “safe”.
Generally, in most remote places on U.S. National Forest or BLM property, there are no Federal rules against nudity. As the article says, “The law is vague. Agencies that oversee public hot springs — the National Park Service, U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management — have no blanket prohibition of nudity, yet they often defer to state and county codes.” So do some research to determine the legal situation with local county or state laws that apply.
Even if the legal situation is unclear, the article notes that “in the backcountry, far from policemen with better things to do, such laws are rarely enforced.” Your best bet is to seek advice from naturists who know the general area and have ample experience with backcountry nudity. Others who venture into areas off the beaten path usually have little or no problem with nudity. But there can always be exceptions from unexpectedly irate prudes, so be prepared for abusive comments (or worse), and keep some sort of cover-up close by.
Here are four more stories about hot spring skinny-dipping: (1) How I Found the Courage to Skinny Dip with Two Friends…and a Stranger, (2) Naked with Friends (Part 1), (3) First Time Skinny Dippers, (4) How a Visit to Nude Hot Springs Helped Me Confront My Fear of Aging
- Nothing to hide! How I became a convert to naturism (6/18/21)
Laura, who’s British, recalls how others at her school made fun of a girl because “her mum and dad walk around naked”. She remembers “thinking that it was a weird thing to criticise someone for.” Having an unfavorable attitude towards simple nudity just seemed strange. She realized later, as an adult, that there are places it’s possible to be nonsexually naked with others, and nobody will object or complain. So when she learned about such a place, she decided to “take the plunge”.
Since Laura had no significant negative attitude towards simple nudity, it’s unsurprising she wasn’t that leery of giving it a try at British Naturism’s Sunfolk facility. Even so, she admits having “much pre-stripping nervousness” before arriving. This is very common and normal even for people who are comfortable being naked at home but haven’t yet visited an actual naturist camp or resort. The fear is that the management and frequent visitors will be less than fully welcoming to new visitors. At most contemporary naturist places, the fear is entirely unjustified – but who’s confident of that ahead of the first visit?
Once inside the facility, some uncertainties remained. Laura wondered “Why am I doing this?! What is my mum going to think of the pictures in the paper?! I’m sure this was never in the lifeplan she never actually created for me.” [Laura’s a newspaper reporter and expected to document her story with pictures.] But once those concerns dissipated and the clothes were off, she could “walk across the grass and I feel about as self-conscious as I would if I had a bikini on. Except I don’t.” And when the time came to get dressed before leaving, “it’s with a surprising degree of reluctance.”
If only more people who’ve enjoyed nudity only by themselves at home or in a secluded place outdoors could realize that naturist social nudity with others is just as easy – and even better.
- No (tan) lines at the Punch Bowl (7/18/21)
Vermont has no landed or non-landed naturist clubs affiliated with AANR, and only one non-landed club affiliated with TNSF. Besides that, the outdoor naturist season there is short. Nevertheless, Vermont residents tend to be liberal and open-minded, and there are a number of skinny-dipping places on public and private land. An especially popular one is the Punch Bowl, located in a wide place on the east side of the Mad River, near the town of Waitsfield (pop. 1844). Details can be found at SwimmingHoles.org in the Mad River section.
The Punch Bowl is on private land, and its owners intend to keep it open as a day-use public swimming hole. They’ve provided a parking area beside the main road, and there’s even a small picnic area. Clothing is very much optional at the Punch Bowl. Although skinny dippers can be seen from nearby trails, most trail users are fully aware of the status. In fact, the SwimmingHoles.org write-up notes that “Swimsuits are considered to be in poor taste here.”
- Fun House Mirror: The Benefits of Going Through Puberty as a Naturist (7/15/21)
It’s an unfortunate shibboleth that youngsters raised in a naturist family frequently no longer want to go naked as they enter their teen years. That’s understandable, since the experience of puberty tends to be difficult in most cases. But dropping out of naturism at that stage doesn’t really need to happen, and there can be real benefits if it doesn’t. Parents should encourage children raised in naturist families to understand just how fortunate they are to be fully comfortable with their own bodies.
Sierra, presumably a teenager and regular visitor at Lupin Lodge, on the outskirts of Silicon Valley near Los Gatos, CA, writes about both teenage angst and the benefits of social nudity to teens. She observes: “Many teenagers can’t even imagine having to be naked in front of other people at this point in their lives. They are self-conscious, prone to inconveniently timed bodily responses, or newly introduced to their menstrual cycle with no interest in wandering around with a visible string between their legs in addition to their other self-image issues.”
On the plus side for going naked, there are details most naturists understand. The benefits are both emotional and physical – especially for teenagers. There are health benefits for the immune system due to increased exposure to sunlight (vitamin D) and strengthened immunity due to contact with allergens and bacteria. The emotional benefits are at least as important. Becoming comfortable around others while naked increases body acceptance and decreases socially-acquired shame associated with naked bodies and all their parts. Most people are unfortunate not to receive the emotional benefits of nudity until later in life – if at all.
Bonus from earlier:
Naked Camping: How and Where to Embrace Nature in the Nude (4/12/19)
Several articles above go into various aspects of naturist camping, or simply enjoying natural places without clothes. There are very good reasons why “naturist” is a very apt term for people who enjoy nudity outdoors. According to this article, “Naked camping, or ‘naturist’ camping, might just be the way you roll in the morning when you’re sleeping outside. But more and more people are catching on to “naked camping” as an intentional way to feel closer to the great outdoors.” Hiking or camping naked isn’t just simpler if you don’t have to bother with clothes. An equally important benefit is dispensing with barriers between individuals and the natural world – barriers that are usually unavoidable in “normal” everyday life. Outdoor activities can be uncomfortable on hot days, but going naked allows for natural air conditioning.
This article touches on various aspects of enjoying camping and other outdoor activities without the encumbrance of clothing. Although nudity in/on hot springs, skinny-dipping spots, clothing-optional beaches, and hiking trails makes, a great deal of sense, such natural attractions are often located far from where most people live. Naturist clubs, resorts, and campgrounds are good options that may be more conveniently located, yet can (if they have sufficient natural open space) allow for the same enjoyment of being naked outdoors.
The site as a whole contains lots of useful camping information. The present article briefly covers several important aspects of going naked in nature. The list includes: (1) Why going naked helps to get closer to nature; (2) An overview of naturist clubs and campgrounds; (3) How to visit a naturist campground or beach, with a short list of specific advice; (4) A list of 10 outdoor naturist campgrounds – one is actually a hot springs – Valley View Hot Springs, in Colorado.