Camping Tips and Trips

 

Camping For Beginners

Camping is a great way to enjoy the great outdoors. Camping is fun, and easy. Common sense and a little knowledge will get you started. The rest is up to you. Do your homework, be prepared, and enjoy the great outdoors. When you are new to camping, the first thing you should do is become familiar with the basic camping gear that you will need. One way is to go camping with a seasoned camper. You can quickly learn from them. Basically, you need a shelter, which could be a tent, cabin, or RV, and you need a bed, which could be a combination of sleeping bags and pads, cots, air mattresses, and comforters, and you need to eat, which may or may not require cooking utensils.

What Camping Equipment Do I Need? Your first tent does not need to be expensive but make sure that the tent that provides weather protection. Sleeping bags provide warm and watertight comfort. Last but not least is your food and cooking supplies which is up to you and can be as simple as a cooler, food, and charcoal. When shopping for camping gear, check out Quality Camping Gear at Wal-Mart or  Sporting Goods at Target.com first. You can also try online at places like CampingWorld.com, www.sportsmansguide.com or BackcountryOutlet.com.

Where Should I Camp?  Check with family and friends to get opinions on places to go camping in your area, or read campground reviews to get ideas about wear to camp .Public campgrounds are usually run by a government agency and include those found in national parks and forests, Bureau of Land Management areas, Army Corps of Engineer projects, and in state parks and forests.  Within the National Park System there are hundreds of parks, recreation areas, and other facilities; and within these parks are over one hundred campgrounds open to the public. Campsites are usually available on a first come, first serve basis. A few of the campgrounds offer reservations, which can be made online. Private campgrounds are typically RV parks and campground resorts owned by private citizens or businesses. You will find a lot of them have their own websites you can check online.

How To Setup Camp? When you first arrive at the campground you'll want to stop at the campground office and check in. If you have any location preferences, like close to the bathroom and showers, or next to the lake, or away from RVs, ask the attendants. This is also a good time to ask some questions about campground rules, quiet hours, garbage disposal areas, emergency contacts, ranger patrols (good to know if you're camping alone), or whatever else you may have a concern with.

Here are some things to look for when selecting a campsite:

  1. Make sure there is a water source nearby. You don't want to be lugging around coontainers of water for long hauls.
  2. Look for ground that is high and level.
  3. Make sure there is an adequate area for cooking.
  4. Try to have a shady spot that you can retreat to for relaxation.
  5. Know where the garbage cans are.
  6. How far do you want to be from restroom facilities. They tend to bring more traffic so if you are looking for quiet be aware.

How To Break Camp? There are two main things to remember when you break camp. Don't leave anything behind and don't leave a messy campground.

Here are some things to do:

  1. Empty food from cooler and dispose of trash.
  2. Use a whisk broom and/or rags to wipe off gear as you stow it. Try to pack your gear as you had it when you came to the campground. It's also a good idea to separate dirty clothes so that they will be ready to be washed when you arrive home.
  3. Make sure the campfire is extinguished completely. Douse it with water.
  4. Time for one last check. Walk around your vehicle and look around the campsite to see if anything was missed.

After You Arrive Home? The ride home after a camping trip can be long, particularly when you have a hot shower and cozy bed waiting there for you.

Here some final chores that need to be done:

  1. Unload your car, truck, or camper and separate everything used on the camping trip.
  2. Remove all food from your cooler and place it in the refrigerator, then rinse the cooler and allow to dry.
  3. Return all remaining foods to the pantry, cupboard, or refrigerator.
  4. Even if you did it at the campground before leaving, it's still a good sanitary practice to wash them again.
  5. Before washing the clothes, go outside and shake out all your camping clothes and bedding.
  6. Shake out all your gear too. If any gear is wet, lay it out or set it up to dry before packing it for storage. Mildew is much easier to prevent than it is to remove.

It's a great idea to keep a camping notebook. Keep a camping check list. Add any new items that may further your enjoyment of the great outdoors, and remove any that you found you didn't need. If you've taken a liking to camping, keep notes of the campgrounds you've visited, the recipes you tried (and liked), the friends you made at the campground, and any useful tips worth remembering.

Camping Gear at Basspro.com