Anytime you travel you want to be smart about how much you pack and what to pack. There are some travel opportunities where you will need to carry your luggage on your back, but when you camp, that is every time. It is important that part of the planning process for a camping trip is defining what your camping necessities are. Your camping necessities should include general travel items like clothing and toiletries, but also items that will help you in a bind. Here are some camping necessities you should consider for your next camping adventure.
Start Packing These Camping Necessities
Water….and a Way to Drink it
What is one thing you need in order to survive and feel your best? Water! Water is not only a life necessity, but it is also a camping necessity. You will want to have water with you to fuel you on your camping journey. There are plenty of smart options you can choose from depending on your camping trip. You might want a camelback that doubles as a backpack, you may want a large all-glass or metal water bottle to carry or maybe you want a water bottle that comes with a filter.
If you are not going to be around a campsite with fresh water, look into Life Straw. Life Straw filters up to 1000 liters of contaminated water, without using chemicals or batteries. Find what suits your needs best, but always make sure you have a way to get clean water.
It is a universal chore that we all go to the restroom. Do yourself a favor and add tissues to your camping necessities list. You never want to be caught with your pants down and no toilet paper in sight. Purchase some compact Kleenex to help you when you need it most.
Your biggest camping necessity is a good attitude. That can be hard when you are hungry. You are not yourself when you are hungry. Always have a protein bar in hand to tie you over on long days. Some favorites of other campers are Cliff, Luna, RxBar, and Quest.
Looking for a state with beautiful campgrounds? Read The Ultimate Vermont Summer Vacation and discover a state with beautiful sights.
This nifty accessory is a lifesaver for people who have a hard time sitting on the ground. This chair keeps your posture in check and should be a camping necessity. Crazy Creeks can easily clip on to a backpack for easy transportation and ease the stress that sitting can put on your spine and tailbone. Crazy Creeks come with various specifications and colors, so you can find an exact fit for your camping necessities. What’s more? In dire situations, a Crazy Creek can be used to create a temporary splint. Let us hope it does not come to that though.
Sleeping Essentials: Where and How are you Sleeping
This is a no brainer camping necessity for any overnight camper. Make sure you have something to sleep in and somewhere to sleep. Be prepared for the weather and know if you will need a lighter sleeping bag or a warm sleeping bag.
Also, know what kind of support you need to sleep, in order to have a good time. Some people prefer to sleep on a firm surface, while others need some cushion. You can easily get a sleeping pad to put under your sleeping bag. A sleeping pad is a camping necessity for those going winter camping.
Tip: Want to mix it up? Try sleeping in a hammock. Eno hammocks are easy to set up and easy to store in your daypack.
Apps! Apps! Apps!
If you are heading into the wilderness, you probably want to stay away from technology. But, do not write off technology just yet. There are lots of apps that can help you find a campsite, assist you in times of need, or supply you with fun. Here are a few to keep in mind:
- First Aid – Basic first aid information
- Trail Chef – Trail tested recipes
- Chimani – List of National Parks, maps, and “stamp-able” passport
- Geocaching – Go on a treasure hunt and look for nearby caches
- AllTrails – Over 75,000 trail maps
- AllStays Camp and Tent – 21,000 searchable campgrounds
- US Public Lands – Searchable free or low-cost camping
- SkyView – View the night’s sky and identify what you are looking at
- iNaturalist – Identify plants and animals on your trip
You are going to see so many beautiful sights on your camping trip, so add a camera to your camping necessities list. If you are not an avid photographer, do not be ashamed of using your phone’s camera. You can buy additional lenses that can clip onto your phone and add to your photo quality. These days, phone cameras can take incredible quality photos and do not take up too much space in your daypack.
Do you have more extensive camera equipment you would like to travel with? Here is a guide to help you Travel With Your Camera Gear.
There are probably several reasons you would be using your cell phone on your camping trip. You might need it for navigation, camera or unnecessary email checking. If you do not know, then you should, that there are no outlets in the great outdoors. There are probably some ways you can find a power source nearby, but you still should not skimp on a power bank. A power bank is a camping necessity for those using their cell phones for multiple reasons. There are some solar power versions that hard-core campers can use. For weekend campers, you should be fine with a pre-charged power bank.
Are you interested in having a mesmerizing fire on your camping trip? Well, make sure you pack matches along with your other camping necessities. If you are a hardcore camper, consider covering the tips of your matches in wax or clear nail polish while you prepare for your trip. That way, you will not have to worry about ruining your matches while you careen down a river or get caught in a storm.
First Aid Kit
When playing in the outdoors, you are bound to get a few scrapes or bruises. It is important to have a few items on hand to help aid any cuts along the way. An entire first aid kit is not a necessity, but having a few band-aids, Neosporin, and ibuprofen on hand can do the trick. An infected wound can make any trip feel like a disaster, so avoid that mishap altogether and pack some first aid necessities to keep you happy and healthy.
Swiss Army Knife
You never know when you will need a handy tool in the backwoods. Having a Swiss Army Knife can really help you if you find yourself in a random jam. Have a splinter? Need to cut a branch for a s’more stick? Need a can opener for your campfire dinner? This camping necessity can basically do anything and does not take up much room. There are even some Swiss Army Knives that come with a keychain.
When going camping, it is a necessity to not feel like you are dependent on your phone. For one thing, you want to be able to disconnect from technology in some way, and two you will want to conserve your phone battery for when you need it most. So make a flashlight a camping necessity. Better yet, invest in a headlamp, so you can be hands-free.
Layers: Base, Middle, and Outer
There is a science to dressing for the outdoors. To adequately prepare for a weekend in the wilderness you need to pack a base layer, middle layer, and outer layer.
A base layer is known as the “underwear” layer. This layer should be close to your skin while having the ability to wick the sweat off of your skin. The middle layer is meant for insulation and should keep you warm. The outer layer or shell should protect you from rain and wind. If you are a casual camper you can get away with the base and middle layer, but you should always have an outer layer on hand. No one wants to get caught in the rain with no protection.
Preparation is key for a good camping trip. You want to be prepared for anything that could go wrong, while also packing as little as possible. Use these camping necessities to help you get there, and remember to refine them to your specific trip and style.
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