I’m a big fan of camping with and without kids. We tend to rough it – which means tent camping. Sure it’s a cabin-style tent but it’s not an RV so… Anyway. I’m always surprised what we miss and the unexpected things you need for camping that don’t make the packing list.
5 Unexpected things you need for camping
Right now I’m actually sitting outside my tent while my boyfriend makes a fire for our kettle. We haven’t invested in a propane stove yet but this works for now. The mornings are chilly where we live and I think most people forget how chilly it is when the days heat up so much.
I feel like camping is kind of a way to get away from life and its stresses. Sometimes I write on my iPad, like I’m doing now, but I refuse to look at work stuff. It’s like a mini vacation. Plus who can beat food cooked on the campfire?
Unexpected things you need for camping
One thing I’ve found, though, is there’s plenty of things I didn’t consider when packing for my trips. You might have thought of them, or not. I know I didn’t.
Here’s some those things:
A small mirror
You’re camping so you don’t need to look perfect. Who cares. But when you get dressed inside your tent you still might want to know if your hair is sticking up or your face is clean. You can use the mirror inside your vehicle but having a small hand one is a lot easier.
Just last night while I was trying to fall asleep there was a kid wailing for a good ten minutes, a dog barking, music playing, people talking loudly, and cars driving past. All after the 11pm quiet time at the campground. I don’t have them because I have a couple kids camping right next to my tent but next time I’m here without them I’ll be bringing a set.
Something for dirty clothes
When I camped as a kid with Girl Guides (same thing as Girl Scouts) as a kid we always had to have a mesh bag for dirty laundry. When you’re camping you might not want a mesh bag but having something like a pop up hamper or laundry basket is perfect to store dirty clothes. If you’re in bear country this is especially important because food smells on your dirty clothes can attract bears so make sure you keep those dirty clothes in the car or away from your campsite.
Activities to do on your own
You think you’re going to be busy camping but sometimes you end up with downtime. If you wake up before your partner or are just resting there isn’t a lot “to do” so to speak. Even if you planned to sit around the campfire and talk you might still get burnt out and want some quiet. You’d be surprised.
Bring something like a book, puzzle book, craft, or anything else you’d like doing. As for the kids, make sure they have more than enough actitives too.
A sturdy backpack
Last time we went camping my partner and I checked out some of the many hiking trails in this area. We like to carry some water, bug repellent, and our cellphones especially in the heat. Somehow we didn’t think to bring a small backpack to carry it all! This might seem like a no brainer to some but if you’re loading everything up in bins or an RV it might not occur to you.
You’d be surprised how much you don’t need to worry camping if you’re at a modern campsite. Here there’s flush toilets with toilet paper, a store that sells everything from fireworks to fruit, resturaunts, pizza delivery, showers, and even a laundry facility. Chances are you’ll be just fine.