Spending a few days in the great outdoors can be a great adventure. However, the experience can become a nightmare if you don’t come prepared. Usually, a bad camping experience all boils down to one factor – you did not bring the right gear for the trip. Packing essential camping items can mean the difference between a relaxing camping trip and a disaster holiday. Below, check out the gear you need for a camping holiday.
1. Sleeping Bags/Bed
The sleeping bag is a crucial necessity when going for a camping holiday. There are different types of sleeping bags in the market, so make sure to choose something that suits you best. More importantly, it should be something that will keep you warm and comfortable when the sun goes down.
In general, you should choose the sleeping bag that offers ample room to stretch out and roll over as you sleep. It is for this reason that many camping bags come in a simple rectangular shape. Since it’s hard to tell if a sleeping bag is roomy enough without trying it on, it is a good idea to visit the actual store when buying the gear, so you can try them on and see which bag style is most comfortable for you.
When deciding which sleeping bag to buy, consider the time of the year you’re camping and the temperature, especially at night. Keep in mind that even places with hot climates will get cooler at night, so choose a sleeping bag that has ample insulation against the cold. Location is a huge contributing factor, so if you’re considering campsites in the UK (especially in the north) you will want to ensure that it provides plenty of warmth. Multi-season sleeping bags would be a great choice since they can keep you warm throughout the year.
2. A Tent
The tent is an essential gear to pack for your camping trip. It keeps you from being exposed to outdoor elements, including insects and bugs. Since it’s your shelter and protection, you need to make sure that you choose something reliable and one that will keep you safe and protected in the woods.
You will find hundreds of different tent options out there, so deciding what to buy can be tricky, although it all boils down to the following factors – weather resistance, space and comfort, durability, and ease of use. As for weather resistance, the key elements to look for are rainfly coverage, hot and cold options, quality of stake and pole, and how aerodynamic the tent is. When it comes to the level of comfort, it all depends upon your personal preferences. But regardless of how you define comfort, you should choose a tent that fits your style and needs.
It’s also important to choose a tent made from durable materials. You should also consider the materials used for the poles and stakes. A nylon tent with silicon coating offers the best overall protection. Some manufacturers also use a ripstop weave in a nylon tent to make it super strong and durable.
There are numerous options for those who like a little luxury when camping. Glamping is particularly popular in America, with places like California, Texas, Arizona and North Carolina all being favoured destinations. This is an excellent option for those seeking an easy weekend getaway in North Carolina, or any of the other locations, because it takes out the setting up and packing away element that camping brings.
3. Kitchen/Cooking Utensils
Assuming you will cook at least one or two camping meals each day while camping, you’ll need to bring kitchen or cooking utensils on your camping holiday. Aside from a portable stove, you will need plates and utensils for cooking.
For something more lightweight, a single burner stove should do the trick, allowing you to cook full-blown meals. While you can cook some meals directly over the fire, portable stoves will let you cook soups, stews, beans, pasta, and rice dishes. Don’t forget to stock up on fuel, depending on the type of stove you will bring.
Of course, you need dishes to serve your food. Choose reusable utensils and plates since they are eco-friendly and make a huge difference when dinner time comes. For a short camping trip lasting a few days, bring a set of plates, spoon and fork, bowls, and an extra shared set of dishes. Throw in a knife for meal prep and a cutting board. You must also bring a small tub to wash the dishes and utensils.
4. Suitable Footwear
For those who are going places to hike while camping, make sure to bring a reliable pair of shoes for your camping holiday. You need to wear sturdy shoes that will give your foot support and protection from the rocks while also giving you traction when walking on dry and wet surfaces.
Some of the best options are hiking shoes, backpacking boots, hiking sandals, and trail running shoes. If you will go for multi-day hiking, a pair of hiking boots is the way to go. It gives your feet enough protection, support, and traction regardless of the terrain and weather condition. Trail running or hiking shoes are some of the best options for short camping trips. They are lighter and not as bulky as hiking boots and offer a decent grip to support your feet.
A pair of hiking sandals would be great if your camping holiday falls during the summer season. They also work well for tropical climates and trails with river crossings since it lets your feet breathe.
5. Clothing for all Types of Weather
The final thing to pack for your camping holiday is your clothing, which will largely depend on the temperature, weather forecast, location of your camping trip, and the environment. Avoid cotton if you can since it tends to absorb moisture and doesn’t provide enough insulation against the cold.
It is best to stick with clothing made of synthetic or wool fabric when going for a camping trip. The basics include a pair of long thermal pants and shirts. Go for something lightweight while still offering layers of warming insulation. Carry two sets of these clothes and bring something to wear for sleeping. Other necessities to pack for your camping trip are gloves, a puffy jacket, and thick socks.
If you plan to hike during the day, your best bet is to wear loose-fitting hiking pants. Pair it with t-shirts or athletic long sleeves. A waterproof jacket will also come in handy during rainy days.