Camping is returning to the fore as a popular way to enjoy the summer, as families once again begin to fill their car boots with camping gear for low-cost holidays in the great British countryside. As a new generation discovers the wonders of camping, they also might discover the difficulties inherent to planning a camping trip. What are the essentials you should bring with you?
The barest of essentials for any camping trip is, naturally, the tent. Tents come in myriad shapes and sizes, with different features for different kinds of trips. If you’re a family looking to enjoy a summer holiday on a Cotswolds campsite, you might want a larger tent with separate ‘rooms’ so each of you can have your own sleeping space. For a couple’s trip wild-camping, or to a festival, a smaller tent that sleeps three can offer enough space to sleep and store provisions.
As well to the tent, you’ll need sleeping bags in which to sleep, and, at the very least, a mat to make the floor more comfortable. Camp chairs and a folding table complete the set, enabling you to eat, sleep and lounge in comfort wherever you find yourself!
Tools and Equipment
It is also extremely important to bring along a versatile set of tools and equipment for your trip. A simple set of tools, including a penknife and mallet, will make erecting your tent and fashioning guy-ropes much quicker and simpler. Torches are a must for late-night toilet excursions and early-morning breakdowns, and a lantern for inside your tent will make your evenings much easier as well.
For larger trips or expeditions, you may also want to bring mini generators for power. These can be for the simple purpose of keeping your phone charged on extended trips away, or for the powering of professional equipment. Generators can also be used to jump-start your car, preventing you from getting stranded due to a dead battery!
Camping trips aren’t quite the same without the familiar smell of a butane stove-top to wake up to. Cooking while camping is a unique challenge, but one well-met by light camping cookware. Simple gas-powered stoves are lightweight and easy to use, especially when combined with a simple folding mess kit.
Of course, this raises an important question relating to the kind of food you bring along. If you have the capacity to bring a cooler along, pre-cooking meals and keeping them chilled until you arrive is a viable option. You can also bring raw ingredients to cook, but this may not be advisable depending on your environment.
On Packing Wisely
This brings us to a general point on the wisdom required when packing. It can be tempting to bring everything but the kitchen sink along with you, especially if you have a car boot big enough. But for wild camping trips or walking tours, it simply isn’t feasible to bring bags upon bags of stuff.
As such, it is important to be judicious about what you bring along. For one, pre-cooked meals will take up less space than raw ingredients. For another example, you might not need a full set of camping chairs and folding tables if you’re staying for just one night.