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What is a Bothy

Terra Nova Bothy Bags are basic emergency shelters to protect you from the inevitable bad weather when you’re out hiking.

Our Bothies take their name from the small buildings/basic cottages that are available to use free of charge in remote, mountainous areas of the UK. These buildings provide basic temporary shelter from the harsh wind, rain and snow. When a bothy building is not available, Terra Nova Bothy bags provide a useful emergency alternative.

Simply put, a Bothy bag is a large rectangular box shape of fabric that allows a group of people to quickly take cover from the elements. These shelters can warm up with shared body heat, creating a micro-climate inside. They are also waterproof and offer great protection from biting winds. Thanks to their tiny pack size and weight, they’re extremely portable and will fit easily into most rucksacks and day packs without adding too much weight or taking up much space.

Terra Nova Bothy bags all have the following features:

  • Well made to ensure the fabrics and stitching survive high winds and rain
  • Waterproof
  • High-quality wind-protective fabric
  • Ventilated
  • Lightweight
  • Small pack size
  • Suitable size, for up to 20 people.
  • Quick and simple to use and pack away

In summary

A Bothy bag is an invaluable piece of safety kit that everyone should carry when out walking on the hills. It could become essential if the weather changes unexpectedly and quite dramatically whilst on a walk. They can save lives in the event of someone being injured, providing necessary shelter to keep them warm and dry whilst waiting for help. The Bothy bag is also a real must for those involved in river sports such as canoeing and kayaking, but also hikers, climbers and other mountain activities. Read when to use a bothy here.