Equip Yourself with the Proper Camping Gear
by Holly Hammond
The difference between adventure and agony in the outdoors usually boils down to preparation. If you don’t bring the right gear with you on a wilderness excursion, you’re likely to pay the price. Nature is a beautiful escape from busy city life, but it’s also a harsh environment for anyone that doesn’t respect its power. And the best way to demonstrate that respect is by outfitting yourself with everything you’ll need in your adventure. Check with your destination to see what they recommend for camping, too.
While specific terrain and environments pose unique challenges, some camping gear is universal. Here’s a quick look at the essential items you’ll want to pack for any camping trip.
Even in the summer heat, overnight temperatures can drop. It doesn’t take too much cold to create a dangerous situation. Invest in well-insulated sleeping bags that offer protection against the wind and cold. Besides, they’ll make sleeping on the ground more comfortable.
One size does not fit all when it comes to jackets and the day’s weather. Cold, wind and rain all batter your body in different ways. You’ll need a jacket that can effectively withstand these harsh elements. You might need to invest in more than one jacket to cover yourself in every situation. Bear in mind the importance of layering your clothing when active outdoors.
Don’t suffer through hikes with a flimsy pair of tennis shoes. Upgrade to durable trail or hiking shoes. These offer better gripping and flexibility, reducing the risk of falls and other injuries while making the hike easier.
The wilderness can be dangerous and scary if you lose your way. GPS technology ensures that this never happens. A simple pocket GPS unit will keep you on the right path and enable you to send messages back to the developed world. Just make sure the battery and maps are charged and updated before you head out.
You’ll want to figure out how cooking and eating will be handled in the woods. Whether you’re car camping or backpacking, you need to have a plan and make sure you have the proper equipment. That means stoves, grills, pans, plates and cooking utensils need to be considered.
Whether it’s a day trip or an overnight excursion, backpacks are versatile and very useful in a wilderness setting. Most backpacks also features hip belts that help support your bag’s weight, making it easier to carry supplies as you travel.
Even if you have dreams of sleeping out in the open air, a tent is a required item to pack. Bad weather can sneak up on you, and a good tent can be a lifesaver — literally. Make sure your tent is big enough for everyone on the trip, and inspect it for holes and tears before you leave — otherwise you could be exposed when high winds and rain strike.
With the proper equipment in tow, you won’t have to worry about getting caught outdoors in a problematic situation. Just make sure you do your research carefully and pack any other items that are considered essential for your experience. Your relative comfort outdoors depends on how you prepare ahead of the adventure.