Everyone desires the freedom to interact with nature on their own terms. Some people can tolerate skipping items that others would never leave the house without. Because few campers have the same goals and ambitions, deciding what to bring camping will result in wildly different gear heaps for almost everyone.
There are numerous types of camping, but they all require you to plan ahead of time for what you will need. In fact, anticipating what you’ll encounter and how you’ll adjust to new challenges will be a big part of your future journey.
THE DIFFERENT TYPES OF CAMPING
Wild camping is prohibited or requires special permission in some areas. This Camping is considered by many to be the “pure” camping experience, since it takes the notion of “getting away from it all” to its logical conclusion. The motto is “if you can’t carry it, you don’t need it,” therefore hikers, climbers, and hunters pack just the lightest gear and minimum needs for a stay in isolated or desolate locations.
Camping is quite popular, as indicated by the vast number of campsites for rent across the country and around the world. In areas where there are other vacationers, specialist campsites rent out individual pitches or stands. Campsites include amenities such as shared restrooms, washrooms, on-demand electricity, and, on rare occasions, tiny businesses where you can purchase supplies or food. In most circumstances, you can drive all of your belongings to the destination, allowing you to bring a lot of extras to make your journey more enjoyable. This is a perfect opportunity for the entire family to enjoy the great outdoors, including youngsters (and even dogs).
Event or Festival Camping is a ‘condensed’ form of campground camping, with fewer amenities and a lot more people! You’ll probably only need the lightest, cheapest, and most adaptable gear, such as a popup tent, but you won’t need food, won’t be cooking much, and won’t be doing any survivalist feats other than a BBQ with friends.
Most purists are skeptical of glamping (Glamorous Camping), which is the ultra-luxurious side of camping. Having power for a cooler, lights, and running water at your campsite does not automatically qualify you as a glamper, but bringing all of the modern conveniences to a purportedly “wild getaway” will.
THE LESS YOU TAKE, THE BETTER.
One of life’s most liberating sensations may be discovering that you can live without almost everything you own.
When you combine the opportunity to see sights and locations that few people see, the pleasure of pitting your mental and physical abilities against nature, and the awareness that life doesn’t have to be so complicated, you have the makings of one of your most valuable life experiences.
THE LESS YOU TAKE, THE MORE PLANNING YOU MUST DO.
If you’re new to camping, you’re unlikely to have everything you’ll need, and you may even be aware that you won’t use some of the gear that other campers consider essential. Planned activities like climbing or trekking, the sights or areas you’ll visit, the season and time of year, and the length of your vacation will all influence your demands. Get only the bare requirements, then borrow or barter for items until you learn which items to treasure — and which to discard.
A MASTER ACTIVITY CHECKLIST IS THE SECRET.
Don’t just go online and look for “the greatest list of camping gear” and start shopping. Make a list, whether you’ve been camping for a long time, are a “old hand” at outdoor living, or have a family with continuously changing demands. We’ve put up a list of necessities, but you should weigh each one against your particular requirements.
First, make a list of things to do. Contrary to common belief, you should not begin by preparing a list of “necessary camping equipment.”
TEN IMPORTANT CAMPING ESSENTIALS
Clean Drinking Water
Bring some clean water with you, or if your campsite provides water, bring some canisters and containers to transport water to your campsite. You can’t survive without it.
Try to get a size larger than you think you’ll need to give everyone more room to move about. Make sure everyone will fit in the tent or shelter! A tent porch, tent pegs, a mallet, and a fly sheet are among the extras. Before you walk out into the wilderness, practice erecting your tent. Avoid low-lying regions in hilly region. In case of severe rain, always put it up on soft, level ground. A tarpaulin, also known as a groundsheet, is a heavy-duty nylon or fabric piece that is placed under your tent to protect the built-in tent floor. It creates a ‘safe to walk’ zone around your tent for bare feet while also preventing sand, dirt, and insects from entering. It may also be draped above your cooking area or extended over the tent to keep you dry.
Even if you’re an expert at survival skills and can get by without them, matches save time and make camping a lot more enjoyable. Consider using a camp stove or burner, or a wood or charcoal-fueled fire. It’s a good idea to have waterproof matches or butane lighters on hand. Here’s a look at the finest waterproof matches for staying warm and safe when camping.
Necessary equipment and kits
At least one fireproof pot or pan is necessary for cooking. A chopping board, a wooden spoon, tongs, a mixing or serving bowl (or multi-purpose food containers), a can opener, a dishpan for dishwashing, carrying, and storage, and aluminum foil for cooking over an open fire Cutlery, as well as a plate, cup, and bowl, are necessary. Mess equipment and kits made of plastic or steel are light and durable. Always protect meat and delicate products, and don’t rely on food coolers to keep them fresh for long periods of time.
Using a mixture of fire and camp stoves, you can prepare practically any modern meal. Energy-dense foods and snacks such as trail mix, almonds, no-cook oatmeal, dried veggies, pasta, canned beans, and meat are excellent choices, but they are far from the only ones. You’ll most likely get by without herbs and spices, but don’t forget to bring salt!
Though a sleeping bag will work fine, a sleeping pad will help insulate you from the ground and provide comfort. An air mattress or a camping bed is more luxurious, and you may use sheets and blankets exactly like at home. A cushion or an additional bag loaded with clothes are both excellent options.
You can use either battery-powered or electrical lighting inside your shelter. Always keep an additional set of batteries in your flashlight and/or headlamp. Outdoor use is permitted for propane or butane lanterns and candles.
Utility Knives and Multitools
A good multitool and pocket knife will include a knife, scissors, pliers, corkscrew, bottle opener, saw, and other useful tools.Because you may not have access to mobile phone signals or your GPS, navigational necessities such as a compass and local maps are always a smart idea. To aid with your navigation, read our article on the best hiking compass.
Personal Protective Equipment
Always wear sunscreen and have a decent bug repellant on hand. Consider carrying an EDC item with a whistle to summon assistance, such as a paracord bracelet or lanyard. Biodegradable and environmentally friendly soaps, detergents, and shampoos are better. Layer your garments so you always have something warm or, better yet, all-weather proof on hand. The weather can change in an instant, leaving you drenched and exposed to a strong wind.
Small scrapes, burns, and wounds are going to happen. Have a first aid kit on hand. Bandages, plasters, pain relievers, antihistamines, tweezers, calming lotions, disinfectant, and anti-bacterial salve should all be included in your first-aid kit.
STEP 1: MAKE A LIST OF ACTIVITIES
It’s not enough to say, “We arrive there, pitch the tent, build a fire, and relax.” In your imagination, go over every conceivable scenario and break it down into simple stages. In reality, even rookie and expert campers have been known to arrive at the campsite later than expected, struggle to pitch their tent in the dark, and discover that they had forgotten their tent pens and matches.
Spending a pitch-dark night in your automobile after eating peanut butter scooped from the jar with your fingers is a very instructive experience!
Arriving at your location, unloading your belongings, exploring your immediate surroundings, erecting a shelter, participating in a planned activity, eating, washing, resting, and sleeping are examples of activities. You should concentrate on the equipment needed for these activities.
STEP 2: DETERMINE WHAT ITEMS YOU WILL REQUIRE FOR EACH ACTION.
Now that you’ve picked some of the things that are important to you, make a list of what you feel is required based on your requirements. It might include essential medications as well as activity-specific equipment such as a fishing rod or trekking poles. This is your list, not the list of others. It doesn’t have to be long, but it should be well thought out.
STEP 3: CATEGORIZE THE OBJECTIVES
Begin by making a list of the items you think are essential, then go on to the goods you think would be “good to have” on your vacation.
Here are the categories to utilize for a list of frequently recognized as important objects to help you get started:
Water is the first category.
If water is widely available at your destination, bring enough containers to store enough water for your requirements. When you merely have to open a faucet to grab a drink of water, it’s easy to overlook the importance of water, but depending on your location, you may spend a significant portion of your day acquiring enough safe water to survive.
Food is the second category.
Ration packets, easy-to-prepare meals, canned food, dried food, or fresh food are all options. It is absolutely feasible to go camping in beautiful natural surroundings close to shops where you can restock fresh food on a regular basis, but you are unlikely to want to.
Food is third category
Your cooking requirements will be determined by the foods you bring. The tools you’ll need to prepare and/or store your food. Pots or pans, something to boil water in, cutlery, and bowls or plates to eat from are all required. You might not want to start a fire only to brew a cup of coffee, so having a variety of culinary tools on hand might be useful. A cooler won’t keep meat or dairy fresh for long, so plan your meals ahead of time to avoid waste.
The fourth category is shelter.
To be comfortable, you must be completely dry. A tent is a fantastic choice unless you plan on honing your survival abilities by building a shelter. Do a dry run and practice pitching your tent before you go to make sure you understand the process, can do it without help, and have all of the necessary items.
Light is the fifth category.
There are no street lamps or general illumination, thus the outdoors is pitch black at night. Flashlights with new batteries are essential, and you’ll also need a secondary light source, such as a propane or butane lantern or an electric lamp if your campsite has one. On a clear night, the moon and stars may provide illumination, but you’ll need to keep an eye on what you’re doing when cooking, cleaning, getting ready for bed, and in an emergency. Candles should never be used as your only source of light inside your tent; they are simply too unsafe. Don’t forget about the costs of our solar panels. For all of your critical electronics, see our post on the best small solar chargers.
Planned activities fall within category 6.
This includes any climbing, hiking, fishing, or hunting equipment you have. Families with little children may wish to explore games and activities to keep them safe and entertained while you go about your regular camping tasks.
Seventh category is A contingency plan.
Always keep a first-aid kit on hand and know how to utilize it. If you or your companions want assistance, you should know how to get it. You can’t rely on cell phones since reception in distant regions might be spotty. If your friends or relatives need to contact you, let them know where you are going and what your plans are. Give them your license plate number and phone numbers, as well as information on the local authorities at your location. To stay up to date on the news, check out our post on the best solar radio for emergencies.
Always follow any rules and regulations imposed by your hosts or the administration of your destination. They’re there to ensure your safety as well as the safety of all other guests.
STEP 4 – COMPLETELY RESEARCH YOUR DESTINATION
It’s possible that every stand at your campsite has amenities like washrooms and power. Your needs won’t alter in such situation, but the products you’ll need to meet them may. Consider the following scenario:
Water is on your list.
For hand washing, drinking, and cooking, you’ll need a large, sealed container with a tap that you can replenish daily and put near your cooking area. You won’t need enormous containers of fresh water or sparing use to make it last until you reach home now that you know water is accessible on tap.
Light is on your list.
Always have a flashlight with you. You won’t need to buy as many flashlight replacement batteries now that you know energy is available. In addition to a headlight, you need invest in a heavy-duty extension cord with multi-plugs for an electrical lamp and battery charger.
STEP 5: COMPARE AND REVIEW YOUR LIST
It’s quite simple to overlook anything. Compare your to-do list and camping equipment.
While compiling this list is a fun way to look forward to your well-planned vacation, it’s probable you’ll arrive at the campsite without a tin opener or matches. If you’re going to a new place or don’t have much camping experience, you can forget something important. Check your list against this one (LINK), then finish and start collecting.
STEP 6 – WHEN PACKING, MAKE SURE YOU DON’T MISS ANYTHING.
When packing for your journey, keep your list handy and check off each item as you load it. Before you reach to your location, never count on buying something in the next town. Finding a 6-person tent, propane lamp, or even 10 new AA batteries in Remoteville, pop 127 after hours could be a futile task. .
Stick to your to-do list with vigour.
STEP 7 – GET OUT THERE AND ENJOY YOURSELF
Making your own list by anticipating all of the exciting activities you’ll do on your trip is significantly more fulfilling than just following a formula. We believe you now have a good notion of what you’ll need when you go camping. However, just to make sure you have a decent starting point, we’ve put up a list of really useful items to help you get started
A FEW FINAL SUGGESTIONS
Pack some garbage bags for wet clothing or shoes, trash, and even temporary weather protection, as well as gaffer tape and paracord for rapid spot repairs. Before you go to camp, read our must-read article on how to construct a paracord survival belt.
Before you depart, conduct a dry run by pitching your tent and cooking a meal using your camping gear before carefully packing everything up following your checklist to ensure you don’t forget anything.
Always completely clean and dry all of your gear before packing it away at the end of your vacation. It’s awful to discover that you failed to clean up when you bring out a musty, soiled tent on your next vacation. Before you leave a place, take out your garbage and any remaining food, and clean up.
Now that you know what to pack for a camping trip, remember this golden rule of the great outdoors: Never leave anything but your footprints behind; when you leave, take all of your belongings and trash with you. Because your campground isn’t your home, keep it tidy for the next set of campers and the wildlife who call it home.