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What Should I Take Camping

Updated on April 6, 2013

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What to take on your camping trip

A camping trip can be a great getaway for families and couples alike. It is great to get outdoors, away from the city, and enjoy all that nature has to offer. There are some amazing places to camp all around the world.

Below is a list of things you should consider taking on your camping trip. Not all of these will be relevant to you. You should carefully consider where you are going and the length of time you will be there to determine exactly what you should take with you on your camping adventure.

  • Tents. Make sure you have enough tent pegs and something (like a hammer) to hit the pegs into the ground. You should also take a tarp to lay under the tent.
  • Sleeping bag.
  • Pillows. It's much harder to sleep without a pillow to lay your head on. If you forget the pillows, you might need to use towels or spare clothes as a makeshift pillow.
  • Air mattress. Don't forget the air pump.
  • Large plastic baskets or buckets in order to carry your food, water etc.
  • Any licenses which are required for you to camp, fish, hunt etc.
  • Matches (preferably the waterproof kind) or a cigarette lighter.
  • Insect repellent. An absolute must!
  • Spare clothes. Pack depending on the climate of your destination. If it gets cold at night, take warm clothes.
  • Clothes to sleep in (pajamas).
  • Underwear, enough for each day you are away from home.
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste. It's important to maintain good dental hygiene even while you're away from home.
  • Sunscreen. Don't get burnt and risk skin cancer!
  • Fishing rods, tackle, hooks and bait if you're going on a fishing trip.
  • Deodorant. Especially important if you can't shower very often (or at all).
  • Camera so you can capture some great pictures.
  • If you are a light sleeper, bring earplugs to block out the sounds of nature that may keep you awake at night.
  • Emergency first aid kid. Include bandages and band-aids.
  • Flashlight (torch).
  • Towels.
  • Soap (in a plastic case).
  • Shampoo.
  • Hairbrush (comb).
  • Toilet paper. Don't be caught out without toilet paper. It is an essential item.
  • Any prescription medication that you must take.
  • Water. Make sure you take enough to last you the entire trip if you're unable to buy water nearby.
  • A small gas stove with sufficient propane tanks or a grill or burner. Anything which will sufficient heat food.
  • Food. Bring enough food to last. Avoid perishable foods unless you have them stored in a cooler and you are sure they will stay cold for long enough. Try tinned foods or pre-packaged meals.
  • Plastic or disposable paper plates, bowls, cups and cutlery.
  • Cutlery to prepare food. You'll probably need at least one sharp knife for instance.
  • Dishwashing liquid.
  • Can opener.
  • Bottle opener.
  • Salt, sugar, pepper and other condiments you regularly use.
  • Peeler, if you have fresh vegetables that need peeling.
  • Shovel. Can come in handy.
  • Long rope. Again, a handy item with various uses. One is to hang out wet clothes or towels so they will dry.
  • Extra batteries, especially for your flashlight.
  • Trash bags.
  • Whistle, compass and good walking shoes for a hiking trip.
  • Hand sanitizer or baby wipes.
  • A small backpack to take the essentials with you through the day while leaving the heavier items back at your campsite.
  • Folding chairs and tables.
  • Binoculars.
  • Hat.
  • Portable toilet, for those going somewhere without an available toilet and running water.
  • Firewood, unless you can gather some near your campsite in which case just get the firewood when you're there.
  • Sunglasses.
  • Paper towels.
  • Aluminum foil.
  • Napkins.
  • Feminine products (tampons etc).
  • Bottle opener.
  • Scissors.
  • Duct tape. It has at least 101 uses and will probably come in handy at some point during your camping trip.
  • A watch or battery operated clock so you can keep track of time.
  • Books and magazines.
  • Cell phone charger. You may not have phone reception while camping but you may still want to charge your phone while driving back home.
  • Playing cards, board games, chess, checkers and other games to keep you entertained at night. A personal favorite of mine is the game Uno.
  • Candles.
  • A guitar or some other musical instrument with a music book (or just a great memory for chords!)
  • Tissues.
  • Gloves.
  • Coffee, tea bags and tins of hot chocolate.
  • Marshmallows - to cook over the campfire!
  • Cash. You never know when you'll need to buy something so you'll want to have some cash on you.
  • Pocket knife.
  • Tongs.
  • Thermos.
  • Battery-operated radio.
  • Tweezers.
  • Extension chords, if you're at a campsite with electrical hookups.

If I've left anything of the list, please leave a comment below and let me know!

Camping in Comfort

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    • Larry Fields profile image

      Larry Fields 5 years ago from Northern California

      Hi Karen,

      Good checklist. Voted up, useful, and shared.

      If you don't want to bring all of that drinking and cooking water, you could bring a GOOD water filter instead. The kind that you need to pump by hand. This will also give a good upper body workout. :)

      If you cook regular rice, rather than Minute Rice, the boiling time may be enough to kill whatever microscopic beasties are hiding in the local water. And that will spare the exertion that would otherwise be necessary to purify the rice cooking water.

      If you cook the rice with an excess of water, coffee made with the leftover rice cooking water will taste slightly less bitter.

    • armysurplus365 profile image

      armysurplus365 5 years ago from Cornwall

      A very comprehensive list of items. A good guide or checklist to help you plan your trip. Obviously somethings may or may not be required depending on the location and duration.

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