Does anyone have ideas of a high density campground for tents, caravans and motorhomes?
Currently it's on grass, but we're looking for something more sustainable. Climate: cold and wet winters, mild summers.
William Bronson wrote:Woodchips?
They are generally free and good for the soil.
Free range chickens to patrol for weeds.
So would you eliminate all grass and replace it with woodchips, and let chickens pick all the weeds.
Couldn't this result in a muddy situation, stuck cars, chickenpoop,... some things people with a less permaculture mindset would mind... ?
I would look into overseeding with some grass species that take high traffic well, things like Bermuda are very high traffic durable.
Look for species that will be green in each season and plant all of them, that way you won't have an all brown space at any time of the year.
The biggest issue you will have is compaction, so for those "trails" that the heavy vehicles take you might need to invest in some sort of "paving" but it might not be necessary by now, since it seems you have been operating this place for a while already.
By the way, there is nothing more "sustainable" than grasses.
Gravel and wood chips (or anything you spread on the surface that is loose for that matter) will eventually spread out and will need to be raked back into place frequently, not very energy efficient in terms of labor for maintenance.
All of those types of items will also become beaten into the soil, that means they will stabilize the ground as it becomes more compacted but this will be a bear to de-compact should you ever want to do so.
These materials also make it harder for water to soak in, ever. Grasses will come up through both gravel and wood chips knitting the rock into an invisible layer (I have an area like this on my property that used to be a parking area, I am always raking up rocks).
One other thing to think about is separating those "lazy campers" from the "Low Impact campers".
Look at how many of the US and State Parks handle this, they have areas just for those who have to bring a house on wheels and then they have areas that are tent only.
The usual tent only camp ground is grass and perhaps one path that has some sort of "paving".
The Wheeled house areas are usually mostly hot pavement, since those folks normally have airconditioners, TV's and the other "I am not really a camper but I want to call myself one" niceties of home.
Having done "camping" just about every way there is to do it, I can say I prefer our tent over the RV, in fact we sold our RV several years ago.
We loved Motorcycle camping, tent, camp stove and everything else fit in saddle bags and back rack, nothing fancy needed.
Now that I can't ride, we don't even have the scooter anymore, but we do have the camping gear and a 4 wheel drive.
One of the best things I remember about Yosemite is that tent campers have the choice of drive to camp ground or hike to camp ground. The views are far better at the hike in camp grounds.