If you’re new to camping, your first question might be: What supplies do I need?
And the answer is that there is no single, simple answer. Some people need and want more supplies than others. It also depends on how many people are going, how long you will be out there, what kind of camping you are doing (cabin, tent, RV, etc.), and whether or not you’re going off-grid.
But in the end, everyone can follow some general guidelines – new or seasoned campers alike – when it comes to what gear and supplies you need. Let’s take a look, but remember that these are only Camping Necessities suggestions, and you are free to change, update, tweak, or replace items as needed to suit your needs best.
First, the most obvious, you need actual camping gear. This could be a tent or multiple tents, sleeping bags and blankets, and other essential camping supplies. You will need comfortable clothing (layers are suggested) and comfortable, safe footwear like tennis shoes or hiking boots.
It would help if you had flashlights and backup batteries, a tarp, dishes and cookware, and a way to clean your dishes and cookware. You may also want a way to wash your clothing or hang up clothing that gets wet and needs to try.
Clothing and Personal Supplies
If there is anything you can bring extra in this department, it’s more socks! You can never have too many socks when you’re camping. Taking care of your feet and keeping them clean and dry is very important, so even if you’re concerned about space, pack a few extra pairs of socks.
In addition to this, it’s a good idea to wear or bring layers that you can strip or add on to when the weather changes. Remember, you won’t be able to change the thermostat as you do at home, and you want to be sure everyone is comfortable and safe.
You may also want to bring camping furniture such as folding chairs and survival tools like a utility knife. Trash bags are essential, but you may also want cleansing wipes, paper towels, and other convenience items to help clean up and keep your campsite clean.
Cooking Gear and Food
You will want to be sure you have enough food and water so that you and your family are adequately nourished and hydrated for the duration of your trip. This doesn’t mean you have to live on Pop-Tarts or energy bars.
However, choose items that are lightweight, easy to cook, and easy to clean up. Canned goods and light items such as soups, canned meats, jerky, and cereals are perfect. If you do any long-term camping, it may be worth investing in a camping oven or stove. This will open up more possibilities of meals you can prepare and cook while out away from home.
Finally, after we consider all the things you really need, let’s look at some things that are an option and a lot of fun. You may want to bring recreational activities along, especially if you have children who might get bored more easily.
Some examples include:
- Football, Frisbee, or other balls and games you can throw or toss around
- Horseshoe or beanbag toss games
- Card games and board games
- Notebooks, reading books, journals, sketchpads, coloring books, etc.
- Volleyball or badminton net and accessories
These are just a few ideas to get your list started. You can expand on this and also base it on where you are camping. Many dedicated campsites have recreational facilities and amenities. There may be basketball goals, swimming, other water-related activities, and more. Do some research beforehand to determine what will be there and plan your trip and your supplies accordingly.
Camping is meant to be a fun experience, and when you plan and pack correctly, you can get the most out of your camping trip. Everyone who comes will be more comfortable and, therefore, in a better mood when you have the right supplies that you need.