Whether you are new to camping or an old pro, there is always room for improvement. Camping is not for the faint of heart, especially if you plan on truly roughing it out in the wild. Being prepared is essential and is what separates real campers from those who go “glamping”. Allow the following tips to assist you in becoming a better camper, no matter your previous experience.
Becoming a Better Camper Makes the Camping Experience More Fun
When people think of camping, they often approach it illogically. They purchase what seems to be the right equipment, but they never delve into what makes or breaks the camping lifestyle. Camping can be a mild adventure or an extreme one, depending on your level of comfort. Those campers who step outside their comfort zone often find the experience to be well worth the effort they put forth.
If you truly want to become a better camper, it is going to take research and life experience. Each camping adventure you embark on will teach you new things. The cool thing about camping life is you never stop learning, no matter how much you think you know right now.
7 Tips for Becoming a Better Camper
Camping is a pastime that has been enjoyed for hundreds of years. While many once did it out of necessity, recreational camping can be traced back as far as the 1880s. Because camping is deeply rooted in tradition, some people shy away from it because they feel inadequate in preparedness. The following tips will help to ensure you become a better camper. With practice and the right knowledge, almost anyone can become well versed in what it means to truly camp in the outdoors.
1. Knowing your gear is essential for being successful as a camper. Never purchase gear and wait until you get to the campsite to learn how it is used. Whether you purchase an expansive tent or take a bike for camping, you need to know how everything works before you get to the campsite. Testing them in your own backyard and under controlled conditions can help you set up your campsite in a shorter amount of time and help you avoid those nagging injuries and other upsets.
2. Buy a big enough tent. While this might seem like a no-brainer, you would be surprised how misleading tent descriptions can be. You get to the campsite and find your five-sleeper really only comfortably sleeps two. Carefully research your tent options and buy according to the number of sleepers, their size, and the time of year. A durable tent will take you through countless camping trips if you take care of it and properly set it up.
3. Checklists are your friend. Although many people think forgetfulness is a sign of being a newbie camper, there are old pros out there that can forget too. Having a checklist for setup and pull down will greatly decrease your levels of stress and ensure the process is streamlined and successful. Going through dry runs in your own backyard can help you cut down on the time and get the mistakes out of the way when they are more forgiving. Lists are also helpful for packing.
4. Meal planning is essential for enjoying the camping experience. If you expect to live off the land, you are likely going to be in for a rude awakening. Smart meal planning will help to ensure everyone on the camping trip has the proper nutrition they need for enjoying all the activities, from hiking to fishing. (How many lumens is a good marine spotlight? read before buying one!) Designating cooking duties to each party on the trip will cut down on the work each person has to do during meal prep.
5. Studying plant and animal life is essential for being the best camper you can possibly be. If you do not know your surroundings, including the plant and animal life where you will be camping, you could be met with unwelcome surprises. Being prepared for exposure to creatures and plants is essential for being an effective camper. Facing the possibilities head-on will protect you from unwanted illnesses and injuries.
6. Do NOT be one of “those” people. Rule breakers ruin the fun for everyone. If you are camping in a campground, make sure to familiarize yourself with the rules. Breaking the rules and being obnoxious will get you kicked out and it can ruin the fun of other campers who know how to behave. No, you do not have to stop having fun, but you do need to abide by the campground rules. If you cannot, this likely means you are too immature to go camping and should stick with your backyard and a cheap tent.
7. Learn from past mistakes. A person that cannot learn from their past mistakes is not going to be a good camper. If you think you can go camping and never once make a mistake, you are wrong. Camping is a continuous learning process and should be approached as such. You will never master the art of camping, no matter how long you go out into the wild. There will always be mistakes you can learn from and learning from them makes you a much better camper.