Camping is a great way to test your endurance, catch a break from the hustle and bustle of the city and reconnect with nature. As long as you pack like a pro, you need very little experience to have a great time outdoors. If this is your first camping trip, here’s what you need to pack in order to stay comfortable and safe on your adventure:
When you think about camping, you automatically imagine a tent with a little campfire in front. That’s exactly why the tent is the most important camping necessity. Even if you want to sleep under the stars, you still need some shelter for yourself and your stuff in case of bad weather. Depending on how many people are in your camping party, you can choose from two-person tents to cabin-style tents.
After nightfall, you can expect a drastic drop in temperatures, so having a sleeping bag is crucial. At best, you can expect a very uncomfortable night of sleep without a sleeping bag, and the worst-case scenario involves hypothermia and plenty of insect bites. A proper sleeping bag for your season, camping style and size is a must-have for every trip.
A campfire can be a real lifesaver, besides making the camping atmosphere warmer and more authentic. To get your fire going easily and quickly, pack a fire starter kit in your bag—these usually contain flint, steel, matches, a lighter or a magnesium fire starter. If you have space in your backpack, take some kindling with you as well (or gather it during your hike) and keep it in a dry place so you can always have something to get your fire going.
A quality knife
If you’re only choosing to bring one tool on your camping trip, make it a knife. With a knife, you can construct, prep food, cook, perform first aid and keep yourself protected from intruders. A quality and durable OTF knife can be a great companion for every camping trip because it’s small enough to be kept in your pocket and suitable for a quick draw in case you need it. Designed for military and first responders, you know this knife will last you a lifetime and be like an extension of your body all through your camping trip.
First aid kit
Camping is a very safe activity and you don’t have to expect any injuries, but it’s better to be safe than sorry. Your first aid kit can handle anything from blisters to cuts, as well as some more serious injuries. It’s necessary to check whether your kit has bandaids and bandages, antiseptic, scissors, soap and emergency blankets and whistles.
Reusable water container
Humans can’t survive without water, and this source of life is not easy to find when you’re off the beaten track. You might run into certain water sources, but how do you know they are sanitary? It’s necessary to pack plenty of water in a camelbak hydration pack or reusable water bottles. It’s also smart to invest in a water filter so you can always have some drinking water with you (this is a must for longer trips).
It’s very easy to get lost in the wilderness, especially if you decide to hike after dark. Therefore, always have some form of navigation with you—a map, compass or GPS. Relying on landmarks is not a smart idea because they can change quickly and cause you to become disoriented. And getting lost in a wooded area with a limited supply of water is very scary and even deadly. Even when you let your kids walk to the nearest landmark to explore or when you’re trying to hike up the nearest peak, always have a way to return to your camp safely.
Finally, nature can get pitch dark after sunset, so to boost your comfort levels, pack some lighting. A campfire is nice and warm, but it doesn’t provide too much light when you need to use the toilet in the middle of the night. A battery-powered headlamp is the best solution because it’s durable, light and hands-free so you can have the best mobility while lighting up your way.
Of course, you can also add a variety of other things to your camping list, but these necessities should always be at the top. Hope you have a good time exploring nature this year!