If you and your family are projecting on going on a camping vacation, this will probably be keeping the kids up during the night because they cannot contain their excitement. After all, it is not often that you all get to spend a vacation together because of the hectic schedule that you have. Check out our camping tips before planning your next trip.
Not only that, but it is also exciting for them to have close encounters with fascinating creatures that reside in the campgrounds. To ensure the ultimate fun in your family’s camping vacation, here are some simple camping tips to remember.
#1 Prepare Your Tent Spot
Preparing your tent location is an often overlooked aspect of a well thought out camping trip. First, grab a rake and clear the entire area of debris such as rock and pine cones. You don’t want those poking through and damaging your air mattress! Then you’ll be sleeping on the ground for the remainder of your trip. Next, put down a blue tarp and stake it into the ground using a rubber mallet. This provides a nice second layer of defense for anything you may have missed with the rake. Plus its a good place to take off shoes without getting your socks dirty. Now you’re ready for tent set up.
#2 Don’t Overpack
You will only be gone for a few days. Bringing the entire house is not recommended. Pack only the essentials. Remember, everything you bring will need to be packed, unpacked at the camp site, and then repacked and unloaded once you are home. That’s a lot of work! Don’t create extra busy work for yourself. Food, water, clothing, shelter, flashlights, bugspray, sun screen, firewood, knife, stick to the basics here. Furthermore, this will help you stay organized at the camp site and prevent those wild goose chases where you’re trying to track down the bug spray.
#3 Create a Clothesline Between Two Trees
If you and your family are out and about everyday, there’s bound to be water and/or sweat involved. Rain is another nemesis that likes to show up every now and again in the early and late parts of summer. At any rate, people are going to get wet and having this line up is a perfect place to dry wet clothes and hang boots and coats. It can also double as a makeshift shelter when combined with poles and a tarp.
#4 Clean Up After Meals
Nobody likes to scrub away at hard left over chili in an attempt to make a bowl reusable. If you can get a campsite near a water spigot that really makes things easy. Make everyone responsible for their own dishes and spread out the work load. While we do recommend using reusable plates, utensils, and cups, not everything is going to be non-disposable. For garbage and recyclables most campgrounds have dumpsters and recycling containers onsite and you can make a quick stop on your way out at the end of your trip.
#5 Dry Out Your Tent
If it rained during your camping trip and your tent is still a little damp, make sure to dry it out in the sun in your backyard before storing it. This will prevent mildew and mold from growing on your tent and increase the longevity of it. Nobody wants a funky smell on their tent, it doesn’t do much for the already sometimes difficult sleeping situation. Furthermore, mildew will harm polyurethane waterproof coatings that manufacturers apply to tents.
The following are some other tips that you should consider:
- Before heading out, check the weather forecast. If it looks rough, you want to make sure you pack accordingly. If it looks really rough, consider rescheduling your camping trip.
- Create a storage plan for all your camping gear. Storage containers are a great option to stay organized and make packing and unpacking a breeze. Plus, they are easy to stow away in the garage. You could even label the containers or use different colors to help you remember what’s inside each.
- Keep meal time simple but filling. Find meals that use common ingredients so that you minimize how much food you need to bring. Plus, you can use last nights leftovers for today’s special.
- Organize your campsite and especially your camping kitchen. Especially if you have a large group, you’re going to want to keep your ducks in a row to have any chance of feeding all those hungry mouths.
- Use block ice instead of crushed ice. Block ice melts much, much slower than crushed ice and will save you a ton of money. You could even do a hybrid with your drink cooler. Load it with one or two blocks of ice, put the drinks in, and then fill the remainder with cubed ice.
- Use newspaper or cotton balls with a smear of petroleum jelly to start the fire. Other options are old egg cartons, toilet paper rolls with dryer lint, and fire sticker starters found in grocery stores. Having a tinder wood and split logs will be your bread and butter.
- A folding military style shovel is great for making quick, safe adjustments to the fire. Shift around coals, adjust the logs in the pit, and then cover the fire with dirt when fire time is over.
- Don’t go overboard when you go out and buy a tent. Get just the size you need, A larger tent requires more effort setting up and tearing down. There’s nothing like an hour tent setup time with lots of bickering to kick off the camping trip the wrong way.
- 2 Gallon jugs of water with spouts are your friend. The useful spout allows everything to refill their cups and bottles and get just the amount they need.
- Games and activities are fun for the whole family. Don’t let the little ones even get a chance to complain about not having a TV or video games, board games are engaging and provide lots of laughs and bonding time.
- Small battery powered bluetooth speakers are also a sure bet for setting the mood. Keep the batteries recharged with a solar charger as an environmentally friendly option.