Whether you pitch a tent or roll up in a motor home, choosing to spend your vacation time camping can be a blast! Make sure you plan and prepare for all of the little hazards that living with nature can present, by reading the following tips and adhering to their advice!
Have everyone give their opinion on where you should camp. Engage in conversation about what state and location they would like to visit. There are so many options around the U.S. that it can actually be difficult to pick one! If it is easier, select a few of your personal favorites and then let the entire family vote.
Figure out your new gear before you go camping. The practice does really help. No one wants to get to the campground, only to find out that they don’t know how to use something or set up their own tent. Practice with your new gear before you ever set foot on the campground.
If you are going camping with your pets or children, you need to take a few extra precautions. Try to teach your kids the basics of camping safety. They need to know what to do if they get lost and should each have a small survival kit. Make sure you have leashes for any pets and make sure they are current with all vaccinations.
You can make tasty meals even when you are camping. You do not necessarily need to eat just franks and beans or hamburgers. Pack a box with herbs and spices, olive oil, brown sugar or whatever else you like. You can fix meals that have flavor even when you are “roughing” it.
When you bring your dog on a camping trip, make certain he has adequate tick protection. Bugs thrive in forests, and many flea treatments do not extend protection to include ticks, so ask your vet before departing if your dog has everything he needs and what you should do for proper tick prevention and removal.
At night, create “bear bags.” Tie a rope around the bags with your food and your trash. Then, find a tree and toss bags over a branch, raising until they are at least seven or eight feet off the ground. Tie the rope around the tree so it is secure. This way, bears and other animals will not be able to get into your food and trash during the night.
When collecting wood for a campfire, focus on three different sizes: the finger-size wood, that will catch fire right away, the arm-size wood that will keep it going, and the leg-size wood that will allow you to keep the fire going for a long time. Getting different sizes of wood helps you to start the fire and keep it going.
If you are new to camping and you are going without a more practiced friend, you should consider staying in a campground rather than camping in the wilderness. This will help you to learn the basics of camping while still having basic infrastructure and friendly people around you in case of emergency.
If you are camping with others, ensure that there is something available to keep everyone entertained. There is nothing worse than a bored campmate, as they will constantly pester you for activities. Talk to your family and friends before hand and make sure they know how to entertain themselves for the trip.
Cross contamination is not an issue that only affects people that cook at home. When you are cooking outdoors, you still have to worry about not using the same cutting board to cut meat that you do to cut any other foods. If you only have one board, use both sides.
A Swiss Army Knife is a tool that no camper should be without when camping. A Swiss Army Knife contains many useful tools including a screwdriver, a pair of tweezers, a screwdriver as well as a knife. This ingenious tool will come in handy many times during your camping trip.
If you are on a camping trip and forgot the bowls for stew, make your own from large plastic soda bottles that have been emptied. Just rinse the bottle and cut down the plastic to the depth you need. Lightly sand the edges to smooth out any rough spots and prepare to scoop up dinner!
If you are camping with children, keep a picture of them handy. This is the perfect tool in case you can’t find them during the trip. Bring at least one photo of each child for any emergencies.
Make sure you always have a source of clean water with you. When camping, you can’t always trust that a natural water source is clean enough to drink from without boiling the water first. So keep a canteen filled with water at your side during any daily adventure. In the evenings, boil any spring water for ten minutes to create clean water reserves for the next day.
Make a list of the things you need for your camping trip and check each item off once you pack it. Then, make sure you bring each bag to the car. The last thing any camper wants is to reach the sight and find out they forgot something important, like matches or the food.
Make sure you secure all sources of food at night when you go to sleep. There are many animals that can frequent campgrounds at night and scavenge your food, especially when left open and unattended for hours. You don’t want to wake up to your food scattered everywhere, and you left with a shortage.
Always carry a first-aid kit with you while camping. It should include bandages, antibiotic ointment, wrap bandages for sprains and strains, and peroxide or alcohol for cleaning wounds. Scissors, tweezers and other small tools can be used to remove splinters or ticks. Antacids, over-the-counter pain medicines, and allergy medicines should also be included.
No matter how you do it, camping is a thoroughly enjoyable way to spend your vacation. It can offer great relaxation, inspiration and even teach us a lot about our environment. Keep the tips from this article in mind as you set out on your camping adventure and remember to have fun!