Affordable Waterfront Resort Living
News & Events
Jul 10, 2015
Heading out for a camping trip soon? Whether you're new to camping or an outdoor aficionado, here are some tips to make your next camping trip a little easier.
If you don't have all of the camping equipment you need, no need to run out and buy everything right away. Ask if you can borrow from a friend. Another option is to rent your equipment. Some online rental services include Lower Gear and Gear To Go Outfitters, or check out outdoor store rental services like REI.
Fire and Light
We know starting a fire can be hard, but did you know that Doritos can be used as kindling? You can also bring a few DIY fire starters, like cotton balls coated in vaseline or wax. To keep matches protected, pack them in a small plastic container and then glue a piece of sandpaper to the top to make lighting them easy. Lastly, you can wrap a head lamp around an empty jug with the light facing in to create your own lantern, as seen here.
To protect yourself from mosquitos and ticks, wear long pants and sleeves as much as the weather allows. Sage is a natural mosquito deterrent, so throw some on the fire every now and then to keep them away. Tea tree oil is a natural tick deterrent. Mix one part tea tree oil with two parts water in a spray bottle and spray it around your feet and legs. Keeping a dryer sheet in your pocket may also help to repel bugs.
No need to buy travel size spices. Pack your spices from home in tic-tac boxes and they're ready to go. See how here. Prepare your meals ahead of time, then freeze them and reheat them over the fire. For breakfast, put pancake batter in a bag, freeze it and thaw it out when you're ready to cook. Pre-crack eggs and bring them in a jar so you don't have to worry about them getting cracked in the cooler. Freeze gallon jugs or bottles of water before you go so that you don't need to buy as much ice for your cooler. Check out these nifty tips to pack your cooler.
Protect your toilet paper by putting it in an old coffee can and cutting a slit to slide the paper through. See how here. Place dots of toothpaste out on a baking sheet a few days ahead of time and let them dry, and pack those instead of a whole bottle of toothpaste. When it's time to brush, pop a toothpaste dot and some water in your mouth and you'll be good to go. Finally, fill an empty laundry detergent dispenser with water to easily set up a handwashing station.
Start planning for packing several weeks ahead of time so you have time to make sure you have all of the essentials. The most important packing tip is to use a checklist, like this printable camping checklist from REI. Another checklist tip: Check an item when you've gathered it, and then turn that into an X once it's actually packed in the car. This may seem obvious, but load your car in reverse order. The things you'll need first, like tents and tarps, should be the last things you pack in the car.
Hopefully you have a chance to enjoy the great weather on a camping trip this summer. Use these tips to make your next trip smooth and easy!