Camp in Comfort: What to Bring

Camping with your family can be a wonderful way to cut loose from phones and the internet and spend some quality time in nature. It can be a great time to bond with loved ones, discover wildlife and make smores at night under the stars. But it can also be a frustrating experience filled with chills from clothes ill-suited for the weather, bug bites, scrapes and poorly constructed tents that leak in the night. Camping can be a real hassle and an unpleasant experience if you are unprepared.

Before you even get to your campsite, you need to pack the proper items. You will need to buy one or more tents, depending on how many people are with you. Purchase tarps for under your tents to prevent seepage at night and pads for under the sleeping bags for an extra layer of comfort. Grab a cooler and pack it full of ice, drinks and food for meals. Make sure everyone packs enough clothes and proper hiking footwear. Double check that you have toiletries, bathroom tissue and hand sanitizer. Grab fully charged battery packs for cameras. For bugs and scratches, have bug spray and a full first aid kit on hand. Keep the first aid kit and two bottles of water per person on you as you hike, and don’t forget your cameras! To read a more complete list of items you’ll need to pack, look here. Shopping at Cabelas.com will ensure you get all of your camping supplies at the same place. Look for coupons for bargains on camping gear and bundles to save you money.

Also, be sure you can build a campfire. Making smores and cooking rustic meals over a fire won’t really pan out if the logs don’t catch. Purchase a fire-starting kit. Read up on making a decent campfire here. Always take caution when making your fire, clean debris away from the fire pit, and don’t ever leave hot coals unattended. You need to bring a couple of sharp knives with you for whittling sticks for marshmallows and hot dogs, and for other tasks. Your campsite should be a breeze to set up if you bring the manuals for your tents. Keep a pile of wood stacked nearby so your fire stays full.

Keep in mind you will have to take all of your trash with you when you leave. Tie up your trash securely and store in the trunk of your vehicle at night if you don’t have a trash receptacle available. Wild animals like raccoons will stop at almost nothing to get into your trash and make a mess while you are sleeping. Also remember to tie bright colored hunting tape to your tent strings. The last thing you want is to trip on a tent string on a late-night bathroom run, and collapse someone’s tent while they’re sleeping. When you have the proper gear and the right know-how, camping can be a liberating and wonderful experience. Use the right equipment to be able to enjoy nature at her fullest and spend quality time with loved ones.