fundamentals of camping are simple: know
where you are going,
proper clothing, bring adequate food, have a comfortable shelter,
it a memorable experience.
keep it simple to start out.
close to home, within 1-3 hours drive.
you've never been camping, don't worry.
It's far easier than you might think. Extreme
backpacking gear is not necessary.
inexpensive tent, sleeping
bag and small assortment of cooking
utensils will suffice for an overnight stay under the stars.
distancing yourself from the everyday tribulations of life will
you can buy RV's,
pop-up trailers and fancy four
room tents for your adventure in the great outdoors. It's
all a matter of comfort and what you can afford. If you aren't a
regular camper and don't yet own any equipment, it is best to start
out with a tent
which is just big enough to fit your family. You
can purchase a family sized tent for
less than one-hundred dollars, or two
nights in a hotel room!
basic equipment you will need for camping is, sleeping
bags, a good quality gas lantern,
for food and some good out-doors clothing which is suited to the
weather you will be camping in.
some other pieces of equipment that
you'll want to include
and try all your gear
heading to the campsite.
better to know how to set up your gear before hand rather than trying
to figure it all out at the campsite.
even set up the tent in the back yard and let the kids try it out
heading out on your first camping trip with a child, let them take
naps or spend the night in your tent at home. The claustrophobic
environment takes some getting used to, and it's best for both you
and the child to accustom yourselves to a tent at home rather than
the outdoors where it is darker and you might bother other campers.
the kids, delegate tasks and have them share in the camp chores:
setting up camp, cooking, cleaning, gathering trash, and packing for
the return trip, etc.
plenty of extra time for everything -
gear, getting up in the morning, cooking, setting up the tent, and hiking.
the leisure time and avoid rushing to get things done.
Practice tent pitching at night
leaving make sure you can set up your tent in the dark.
unexpected can happen.
might run into a 96 mile detour
arrive at your campsite much later than planned.
sun sets three-and-a-half times faster than normal when you're
trying to set up camp.
Bring food supplies
Dad (or Mom) catch,
not be enough to feed the troop.
how to make your own campfire coffee;
don't grow in the "wilderness."
snacks for the kids
makes life on the road much easier.
making your list of things to bring at least one week before
departure. Check off your list as you load the car.
is usually the little necessities that get left behind like
We camp several times every summer and have found that
organization is the key to not forgetting any important items. We use
several Rubbermaid tubs with lids that we keep fully stocked with our
camping gear year-round.
One tub contains a dishwashing bucket, dish soap,
dishcloths and towels, flashlight, spare batteries, a deck of cards,
bug spray, aluminum foil, garbage bags, rope, string, first aid kit,
propane and a lighter.
Another tub contains pots and pans, all cooking and
eating utensils, plates and bowls, tablecloth, drink huggies, and a
couple old measuring cups.
It really pays to keep your tubs fully stocked and
ready for any trip.
We bought cheap flatware and cooking utensils
for our tub so we don't have to bring any from home
cause unnecessary garbage for landfills by using plastic.
We also keep a checklist
on our computer of all the gear we need (tent, tarp, sleeping bag,
grill, charcoal, etc.) that we print out prior to each trip.
All we have to do when packing is grab our tubs, pack
the cooler and dry food, use the checklist for other gear and we're
ready to go.
is helpful to know your destination in advance.
keep in mind that some campgrounds require a reservation.
though it is mentioned last here,
this first before going out on any outing. Plan!
as much information on your different choices of campgrounds as you
can before making your choice. Ask yourself questions that will be
important to making your experience a good one - is it important to
have showers or am I only going to be out one night? Do they have
activities for us to take part in? Are their hiking trails nearby?
Are their bathroom facilities with running water or only port a
potties? Do I need to carry in my own water or take a filter or do
they have water facilities? Do they have grills and fire rings on
site? Does the campsite have tent pads? Can you reserve a campsite or
do you take "potluck" when you arrive? What is the cost? Is
there a camp store? The answers to these questions will help you be
better prepared to deal with decisions that will have to be made on
the fly at the campsite.
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