Whether a person has never camped before or it’s just been a while, it’s easy to overlook a few essential pieces of equipment. Even the most industrious of pros may miss an item or two! But beginner or intermediate campers can’t skip the prep stages before they set off on an adventure.
The right equipment can be the difference between a successful camping outing and a disaster. For a better trip, consider the following before heading out into the great unknown.
Tents are normally the shelter of choice for most campers, but tents are more than just a big tarp covering up the campers. They require stakes, guy lines, and tent footprints for the best possible protection. Stakes keep the tent in place, while guy lines ensure the tent stays taut against the wind and rain.
Finally, the footprint goes underneath the bottom of the tent to protect the material from the friction against the ground. The footprint can extend the life of the tent or help renters return the tent in pristine condition. Remember to keep at least a little ventilation in the tent to prevent excess condensation. And don’t forget, tent camping is special and may require you bring special items.
Clothing for Camping
No matter how many times a camper checks the weather, it’s impossible to predict what the skies will actually do. Experienced campers suggest packing for all contingencies, including rain, hail, and snow. Dressing in layers may feel unnecessary when it’s warm, but campers will be glad they have them if the weather takes a turn for the worst.
Investing in moisture-wicking clothing is also highly recommended because it’s natural and normal to sweat profusely when camping. These specially designed T-shirts, shorts, and underwear pull moisture away from the skin without letting it soak through the fabric of the clothes. The result is a far more comfortable day spent hiking, biking, or fishing.
Camping Utility Knife & Lanterns
When it comes to unexpected emergencies, a Swiss army knife, rope, and a lantern can truly work wonders. A Swiss army knife has everything from a corkscrew to scissors to a bottle opener, and it can make it easier to have fun and make reservations on the site. Ropes can be used to hang up coolers of food so animals don’t get to them, or to help people who are stuck in the water or the mud.
Lanterns or professional flashlights provide better visibility in the dark when walking and make it easier to identify potential threats. If campers are planning to walk at dusk or in the dark, headlamps are recommended to increase mobility. Finally, do not leave home without a First Aid kit that includes gauze, bandages, antibacterial ointment, insect relief treatment, and medical tape.
If you take nothing else camping, take a cast-iron cooking skillet with you. A camping good cast-iron skillet can be used for many other things than frying bacon and eggs. It can be used to boil water for freeze-dried foods & heat a can of beans. It can even be used to clean your shirt (with soap and warm water).
Most people bring too many cooking utensils, pots and pans when camping. Usually, only one or two major pans are needed; a skillet and a larger pot. Those two items, along with a few essential utensils, are really all you need when camping and cooking over a campfire.
A GPS on a phone may not be very helpful if campers don’t have a signal. And often not very helpful even if they do have one. A GPS often can’t predict what you’ll find in remote areas of the woods, and this can take unsuspecting campers down some very bad roads. There are ways to preload maps onto a phone so they can be accessed offline. But experts say campers should also have a regular map of the area handy as well as a compass. You may also want to take advantage of the specialized knowledge in the area too. Ask people in the nearby stores or nature centers what to watch out for, and the best ways to navigate a space.
Camping is a great activity for you, your friends and/or family. But once out in the wilds, its important that you prepared and brought along the items you need. Bringing the right items means a fun and exciting time camping.