In Germany, nude nature hiking has become something of a fad – albeit for a very select few. Nature hiking au natural is not likely to catch on with many. In fact, the president of a German naturists association said nude hikers are, “neurotics and psychopaths.” (Source: Time.com)
An area near Dankerode is where the trails are and they were reported to be an instant hit – but with whom? Originally it was conceived of to draw new customers to a commercial campsite, but the site’s owner now wants those who are coming to the nudist trail to stay away, apparently because it might reduce the number of families visiting his property. Some nude hikers are also out and about in Switzerland, though the practice is under legislative review, and might be defined as a public nuisance, punishable by fine. It appears in Germany and Switzerland it is mainly males who are hiking in the nude, although this could be incorrect. Hiking in this area for women would seem to be problematic, to say the least.
Nature has its defenses, such as poison oak and ivy, thorns, and prickly plants, so why hike nude? Some of the hikers said hiking with clothes is too constrictive and they like the freedom of going without garments. Nude hiking actually seems to be about exhibitionism, and puts the focus on people, rather than on nature, which defeats the point of being in the outdoors. Nude beaches seem much more sensible, as beach goers generally go there to sunbathe and may actually swim, not wearing much anyway.
Image Credit: Paulba (photograph not of Germany)