When it comes to packing for a camping trip, there are some things that can’t be left behind. These items may not be necessities at home, but out in the wilderness with nothing but nature as a shelter, they become all too important. Here’s a list of the top 10 essentials:
Sitting on the ground all the time can take a toll on the back and body, not to mention it’s more difficult to relax. There also may be insects or toxic plants on the ground that may trigger irritation or allergies. A camping chair can be as simple as a stool or as elaborate as a padded recliner.
For cooking and starting fires, matches are pretty much a necessity for cooking dinner, burning garbage, signal fires, etc. Plus they’re small enough to fit in your pocket. Long-length lighters work as well, but make sure to bring a few extras in case they break.
First Aid Kit
This is a must-have for any outing. Whether going on a day hike, camping in the woods, or just spending an afternoon at the park, a first aid kit can mean the difference between life and death. A safety kit should contain antibiotic ointment to prevent infection, bandages in various sizes, and gauze to stop bleeding and clean wounds, at the least. It’s also a good idea to include scissors, safety pins, tweezers, hydrogen peroxide, and cotton swabs.
A rainfly can mean the difference between a pleasant camping experience and a miserable one. If there’s rain, it prevents everything inside from getting wet or soaked, even if it does leak. It also provides some privacy for underwear, bathing suits, and other more private areas of your tent that may not be as private with just a door flap to close.
The moment it gets dark at your campsite, visibility dramatically decreases. It’s important to have a light source in order to watch one’s step and locate all camping items. A headlamp works best for most since it is a hands-free option.
It’s essential to remove all trash from the campsite at least once a day. Garbage bags are necessary for this, as they make it easier to pack up all the garbage and take it home. They also work well for storing food items, as well as shielding them from critters.
A Small Shovel
If you are camping in a semi-wet area, it may be necessary to dig an emergency latrine or drainage ditch. A small shovel will be necessary for this. Shovels are also helpful for campfires and charcoal grills.
Even during a cloudy or rainy camping trip, UV rays will still be there and may burn skin. Use a layer of sunscreen to prevent it from getting burnt or irritated when exposed to the sun. A long sleeve shirt and sunhat will work as well.
Even if this camping trip is rustic and off the grid, it can be a good idea to have a solar charger available in case of emergencies. Many camping models come with built-in flashlights, radios, and emergency alarms.
It’s important to bring at least 50% more water than is needed on a camping trip. Dehydration is common and more may be needed than initially thought. Extra water is also good in case of emergencies. It can help clean injuries and put out fires.
While this list is by no means exhaustive, remembering to pack these ten essential camping items will ensure a safer, enjoyable, and well-prepared trip.