Each time we visit Wild Northumbrian the better it gets, and leaves me wanting to book up again the minute we pack up to leave.
Previously we have always stopped in Esk Yurt as its probably the most practical one for us – closest to the car park, not too far from the toilets for a night time dash across the field and most importantly its all fenced in so we dont have to worry about Marley wandering off by himself!
But this time round we decided to go for something a little different and try the Shepherds Hut. We have always wanted to try this one out since we got to photograph it a while back, but were concerned it might of been a tight squeeze with a little one and a labrador in tow! So naturally now that we have added another little human to the mix now was time to try it out!
It looks so quirky and inviting standing by itself in a quiet corner of the field with the resident sheep grazing by it. In recent months a new addition has also been made which tempted us further to get booked up!
Yep thats right the wonderful folks at Wild Northumbrian have added a Tiki bath, an outdoor wood fired bath. The thought of lying back in a hot bath watching the stars in the Dark Skies area was just too tempting!
We decided to book a short 2 day stay for our youngest Son Elijahs 1st birthday, to introduce him to the place his eldest brother Zach has loved from the day we introduced him; back when he was just starting to toddle and the winter was rolling in in 2015. Zach affectionately calls the place “Wild Northumbrain”! That last four letters are just a little too much for him to pronounce. But he loves the place all the same.
Upon arriving at Wild Northumbrian’s Shepherds Hut at around 5pm – I set the bath off away filling and then the fire on to warm it up. I knew it would be a slow task, but the bath was all warm and sorted by 8pm. Ive popped in a basic guide for setting the bath away for anyone interested as it can be a little daunting on arrival. [See bottom of page for bath instructions]
Once we got all our belongings in and we all settled down I felt the space in the shepherds hut was just right for the four of us plus the furry one and i wished we had tried this one out sooner. The bed which slides out from under the high king size was perfect for the two boys in their sleeping bags and the kitchen area just ample for what we needed. The bath was also the perfect addition to this spot. Soaking in a hot bath with the stars above you and the cool night air was something else.
Like I said we were here for our sons birthday so in the morning we spent some time opening his presents and making a huge fuss of our littlest baby boy. Then we cooked up banana eggy bread on the open fire outside. What a way to start the day – who said you only eat beans when out in the wilderness ey?
This time round we decided to stay around the site rather than venture out, there is plenty to do here to fill your day quite happily. Lots of walks or places to see or if your like me, places to photograph. We took a stroll through the site and down to the river to spend some time searching for “treasure” with Zach and splodging a little. Then meandered back up, trying each and everyone of the rope swings before crossing the swing bridge. Not one for the faint hearted!
We also discovered a new addition of a mud kitchen next to the orchard. The boys spent a considerable amount of time here, collecting fallen apples, making mud crumbles and doing what kids do best – stretching their imagination! I now have a request to make a mud kitchen for our back garden at home now too.
Then it was back to let the boys try out the bath and oh my did they enjoy it. There is nothing more valuable in life than seeing your kids get so much enjoyment from the simplest of things.
On the night we ate like kings again with a homemade chilli cooked once again on the open fire. Then the missus knocked up some incredible chocolate marshmallow bannanas in foil for the the fire too. Indulgence at its best.
I really am super passionate about this place; the ethos, the surroundings and the accommodation is just perfect.
Next up on our list to try is Tree House which is also a new addition to the site. When Zach set his eyes on it when we were wandering around the site he let out a little squeal of excitement and was desperate to climb on up and have a look! So we have promised him we will bring him back to stay in the treehouse soon. It is my goal to test them all out and compile a review of them all to compare which is the best. So keep an eye out on the blog. Currently trying to consider booking for a New Years break before we head back to work for another year.
You can check out the new revamped website below.
- When we arrived the flu was laying on the ground, its light in weight so pick it up and slot it into the hole next to the fire box. Hose reel is next to the entrance gate with the tap, just pop it in the tub, turn it on and start filling.
- Just to the right on the fire box close to the ground you will see the drainage pipe coming away from the bath, make sure the the lever is turned across the pipe otherwise it will be emptying as your filling!
- Make sure to leave the foam cover in on top of the water to prevent too much heat escaping whilst the water was warming up.
- After 30 mins of the water filling I set the fire away in the box so the bath would heat quicker. Put your kindling in and set the fire away and place 2 logs on, let the fire get away and after around 30 mins to an hour put a heat log on, leaving the lid to the fire slightly open.
- Remember to keep checking the water levels!
It may seem as if the bath just isnt heating up, but please give it time and DO NOT over fill with logs as it can ruin the tank! The bath gradually heats from the bottom and does get very hot, if the fire has been on for some time. We found the best way was to let the fire die out just before you are about to get in to prevent burnt bottoms!
So please do be careful, and be patient, it is a large bath your filling and heating and your boiler from home isnt their to crack in to do the job.
These instructions are my guide only.
Im Lew – A blogger and father of two boys, three if you include the dog, living in Sunderland. Not sure I have the hang of this blog niche thing but hey ho, I’m doing it anyway – expect all sorts of randomness.