If you’re planning the ultimate car camping trip, it is really important to have a proper checklist. With the checklist in place, you know have complete clarity about the things you absolutely need for the tour. We have come up with a car camping checklist that will help you get organized.
Over the next few sections, you will find relevant information about the essential car camping gear.
2023 Ultimate Camping Checklist
Sundome Tent with Easy Setup for Outdoors
If you are looking forward to an enjoyable camping session, you can never compromise on the shelter. Since you’re out for a camping tour, your primary shelter would be a tent. But what kind of tent should you buy? What should be the most important factors to consider? Here’s an overview of some of the key things to consider:
Size: Remember, your shelter is the primary mode of gaining comfort and protection from the elements. That is one of the many reasons you need a decently sized tent. When it comes to size, choose a tent that is big enough to accommodate adults while they are standing. If you need to crouch while getting into the tent, consider the next big size available.
In addition to the height, the tent should also feature a huge, screened window that’ll keep you duly protected from the harmful sun rays. Note that this screened window is also equally effective in protecting you from bad weather. That is one of the many reasons it is a ‘must-have’.
That said, make sure the tent is not too big, because, at the end of the day, you will keep it in the back of your car. Head to the tent store in your car, and check if it fits your car back before finalizing the purchase.
Weather Resistant: This is yet another feature that is imperative when it comes to zeroing in on the right tent. Your tent shouldn’t just be well-sized or comfortable, but it should be strong enough to protect you from adverse weather situations like storms.
That is why it is best to check the manufacturing details of the product. Check if the tent is crafted from high quality, sturdy, and waterproof material. This will further ensure that it withstands the worst weather conditions.
Remember, almost all top-ranking tents work quite well during light rains. However, not all of them can offer protection against heavy rains and winds. That does enough research and only get a product that meets this parameter.
Durability: It goes without mention that durability should be your top concern while buying a camping tent. As with the weather resistance, the overall durability of tents entirely depends on the manufacturing condition and the overall workmanship. Check online, read enough testimonials, and only buy a tent when it is durable enough.
Quick Installation: Whether you are an experienced or amateur camper, nobody wants to waste hours setting up their tent. That is why you should check how comfortably you can set up a tent before buying it. Choose a product that’ll take only a few minutes to set up. After all, you want to spend time with your family, not the tent. If you need more help, check out our article on how to pitch a tent.
Size of Packing: As previously mentioned, the overall packing size is an essential determinant as it’ll go inside your car along with a range of additional items. Since most cars have limited space, make sure the packing size of the tent isn’t as much. This will allow you to put everything you need with minimum to no hassle.
Additional Factors: Almost all tents will have a ground cloth and rain flies. That said, some won’t have this facility. While we’d recommend these features for added efficiency, there are instances when you don’t already have them. In this case, use old tarps for the ground cloth and the rain flies.
To double-check your tent, it is best to test it in your home’s backyard or a big park. This way, you will be familiar with the nitty-gritty, and setting up the tent won’t take much time either. The bottom line: you will have the required parts for setting your tent and it won’t take much time to complete the process.
Here, you may or may not include extra ropes and tarps. They are especially useful when it’s raining as you can conveniently set them up at the top.
Big and Tall Adults | North Rim Cold-Weather Sleeping Bag, Olive
If you are heading for a camping tour, you will absolutely need a sleeping a bag. Although you are already carrying a tent, the sleeping bag will offer the extra dose of comfort most of us usually need. The best part: they will also provide ample cushioning to your body. Although some campers vote for bringing in sleeping pads, they aren’t always necessary. Since you’re already carrying the tent and the sleeping pillow, carrying an extra sleeping pad isn’t always important. This is especially true because you’re going for a car camping tour, where space crunch is a real issue.
Although you can choose from several types of sleeping bags, we suggest the bivvy-styled bags as they offer ample protection against rain, snow, and everything in between. Other top options would be a rectangular shaped bag, mummy-shaped bags, double sleeping bags, and even quilts.
That said, before buying a sleeping bag make sure you check the temperature rating. This is even more important if your camping tour is scheduled in a destination that is prone to temperature fluctuations or is freezing cold during the winters.
Inflatable Travel Pillows - Multiple Colors - Compressible, Lightweight, Ergonomic Head Neck Support Camping Plane Travel - Lumbar Back Support (Orange/Black)
Now that you’ve considered the sleeping essentials (read: sleeping bag), it is now time to zero in on the right camping pillow. Yes, you need a camping pillow even when you have a sleeping bag and a pad. Why? Because it’ll make way for a good night’s rest.
Remember, you’ve chosen the camping trip because you’re looking to enjoy. And unless you invest in the right pillow, you can never enjoy yourself to the fullest as you’ll end up missing out on a good night’s rest.
Since most pillows are portable and inflatable, they won’t take up much space in your car. But should you really carry a camping pillow all the way for the tour? We think you should. Here’s why.
Extremely Lightweight: One of the defining features of camping pillows is the fact that they are highly lightweight. Smaller than a regular pillow, these specially designed pillows won’t make your backpack bulky either.
Compact: In addition to taking extremely less space, camping pillows also turn out to be compact. With the right pillow, you get to live-up on the comfort department without compromising on the space. Most of them come with two loops at both ends. This way, you can compress and roll them up as a pillow while getting the loops across it. This, in turn, will give you a pillow’s shape.
Waterproof: Yes, certain camping pillows also live up to the waterproofing department. Since you’re out on a camping adventure, you’re not sure of the weather you’re likely to encounter. Herein enters the weatherproof camping pillows. With these pillows in place, you get the much-needed comfort even amid the toughest weather conditions. That said, not all camping pillows are waterproof. So, always check the manufacturer’s guidelines before choosing any product.
Although some people vote for taking their home pillows for a car camping tour, we don’t recommend it. First, it won’t fit as conveniently in your car or backpack, making both bulky. Next, since you’re taking the pillow for a round of camping, it is only likely that the product will get dirty. This is one of the many reasons you won’t be able to use it back at home. Finally, camping pillows also exude camp smoke for a point. So, if you’re using the same pillow at home, you’ll get the same unpleasant smoke that might hinder your sleep.
But now that we are well-aware of the benefits, how do we choose the best camping pillow? Here are some simple guidelines.
Types: As with everything else, camping pillows can be categorized into several types. The top two options include compressible and inflatable pillows. Compressible pillows are smaller than our regular pillows but bigger than the inflatable variants. They are usually stuffed with feathers, cotton, foam, and a range of other materials. Despite being heavier, they are more comfortable than inflatable pillows.
Inflatable pillows, on the other hand, are lightweight easy to use. You usually need to pump them with adequate air. While they do not take up much space, these pillows may not be as comfortable as compressible variants.
So, before heading for a car camping tour, understand your needs and choose the type that works best with it.
Sleeping Type: Another major determinant of a camping pillow is the sleeping pattern of the user. If you are a side sleeper, you would need heavier pillows like the compressible variants. Alternatively, if you sleep on your back, an inflatable pillow should do the job. Understand your sleeping style and choose the pillow that you’re actually comfortable with.
Camp Kitchen Items
Most camping tours extend more than a day. That is why it is especially important to stock up on the right kitchen items. Here’s a quick list of the kitchen items you might need for the tour.
Stove: You will absolutely need a camp stove to heat food or boil water during the trip. Here, the most common options include single and dual burner stoves. Being lightweight and portable, they are ideal for your car camping tour.
Classic Propane Stove, 2 Burner
Fuel: In addition to stocking up on the stove, make sure you carry enough fuel. It goes without mention that you will need enough fuel to fire up the stove. Common and probably the safest fuel options include butane and propane. They are safe, clean, and available in pressurized canisters. The best part: packing them in your car isn’t big of a task either.
Lighters: Always pack around two to three camping lighters, because one of them will certainly go missing. Make sure the lighter is waterproof and windproof. Also, ensure that your kids don’t have easy access to them.
Dinnerware and Cookware: You cannot go for a camping tour without stocking up on the cookware. So, if you haven’t already, consider getting the right cooking utensils for the tour. While plenty of cooking items are available, cast iron is often deemed a top choice because of the durability it comes to offer. Note that unlike other cooking items, it also disperses and retains heat better. Take a skillet or a dutch oven if your car permits the same. Here’s how to clean a skillet when in the woods.
Pre Seasoned with Handle Covers & Stand for Camping Home Cooking BBQ Baking
Also, avoid wasting paper and take reusable dinnerware for the tour. Do not settle for either plastic or paper as they can potentially damage the environment. Reusable dinnerware is available in all kinds of sizes. So, explore them and choose the one that best meets your purpose.
Tablecloth: If you want to spread out your meals like an actual dinner, consider carrying a reusable tablecloth. Available in various designs, these tablecloths add a personal touch to the tour.
Cooking Utensils: If you plan on cooking during the camping tour, it is imperative to stock up on the right cooking utensils. Other than a skillet, make sure you also carry a ladle, serving spoon, bottle opener, scissor, camping kettle, meat cooler, tin opener, and a cheese grater (if you’re carrying cheese). In addition to these items, also carry ziplock bags and garbage bags to store or throw away food as and when needed.
Travel Set Portable BBQ Camping Cookware Stainless Steel Utensils Travel Kit Outdoor Equipment Cutting Board Tongs Scissors Knife Ladle Spatula
Camp mug: If you love coffee, then rest assured: it is possible to brew coffee while camping. Making sure to invest in a good mug that allows you to keep your coffee warm and delicious while you are on the road! Here’s my favorite camping mug
Stainless Steel Vacuum Insulated Mug with Lid, Black
Kettle: If you are like my finance, then you love tea and always want some with you. In those cases, it’s worth thinking about bringing a camping kettle with you too.
Camp Tea Kettle Camping Coffee Pot Aluminum 27/42 FL OZ Outdoor Hiking Kettle Camping Gear Portable Teapot Compact and Lightweight with Silicon Handle
Ultimate Car Camping Food
Now that we’ve discussed the kitchen items you’ll need, it’s time to figure out the right food. Note that while you’ll certainly need meat or veggies for your one-pot meals, it is also important to load up on dry snack items. You don’t know when you’ll get hungry and it only makes sense to carry the right food. But what exactly is the right food? What items should you absolutely include in your car camping tour? Here’s a quick list.
- Meat ( carry hot dogs, chops, and smaller items).
- Eggs (Here’s how to bring eggs without breaking them)
- Vegetables of your choice
- Milk Powder
- Salt and pepper
- Neutral cooking oil
- Your favorite seasonings
- Instant gas-meals
- Your favorite sauces
In addition to the listed foods, you can also carry any other food of your choice. That said, make sure they last long, and if the item appears to be perishable, consider putting it inside the cooling box immediately. Alternatively, there are also plenty of camping-specific foods to make while camping.
You can also carry a separate box for the usual ingredients and another one for the treats. This way, your camp kitchen will be more organized, and you will exactly know where things are.
Finally, if you are carrying liquids like oil, sauces, and wine, do not put them at the bottom of your bag. Since they are prone to spillage, it is best to place them on top where they won’t have much pressure.
Virus and Heavy Metal Tested 0.01 Micron Water Filter for Camping, Hiking, and Emergency. 3 Stages - 2 Cleanable 100,000L Membranes and a Carbon Filter for Family Preparedness
While many people overlook this important item, a water filter is one of the biggest necessities in a car camping trip. But aren’t these big? How do you fit them in a car along with the tent and so many more items?
Contrary to popular notion, water filters aren’t that huge. You can now splurge on water filters that are specially tailored to fit in your backpack. Lightweight and convenient, these filters always ensure you enjoy fresh, clean, and duly purified water.
Note that while you may or may not choose to include the filters in your regular camping tours, a quality water filter turns out to be a must-have, if you’re camping in a distant land where you may not have access to clean water.
You should also consider carrying this device if you are traveling with kids. Unlike most adults, kids can fall sick more often. That is why exploring the best available water filters and choose the one that’s not just portable but also equally efficient. If you’re having trouble zeroing in on the best filter, here are a few pointers about the types.
Type: Since you’re heading for a car camping tour, you’d want to pack light. That is especially why you need to pick the right type of water filter. Right now, you can choose from pump filters, gravity filters, straw filters, and bottled filters.
Among them, pump filters turn out to be the bulkiest. For this, you need to put up a hose into any source of water. Next, you’ll have to set up the bottle right on the outlet hose that’ll pump out the amount of water you probably need. Although these devices are bulky, they are also highly precise, allowing you to draw out exactly the amount of water you need. That said, they may not be the ideal device for a car camping tour, especially if you are insistent on packing light.
Gravity filters, on the other hand, are more lightweight and portable. As evident from their name, they leverage the gravitational power for forcing water from hanging reservoirs into a well-structured filter. They are easy, convenient, and capable of processing large amounts of water.
If none of the given options work for you and you’re looking for something smaller, bottled filters might be your best bet. Modeled after regular water bottles, these are nothing but advanced bottles with an in-built filter. Most of them depend on the suction process for drawing enough water from the filter. Others, however, follow the same mechanism as a French Press Coffee machine. But while these are simple and easy to carry, they may have some limitations in processing bulk quantities of water.
Note that you can also invest in a straw filter if you are comfortable drinking the water directly from its source. Here, the water will be pulled up from its source via the straw which in turn will purify it via the in-built filter. This is extremely portable and simple. But if you are traveling with multiple people, each of you would need separate straws.
If your car cannot accommodate a filter, consider boiling your water at the campsite. For this, you’d require an aluminum container that can be placed directly above the fireplace. While this isn’t a surefire way to treat impurities, it can be a fairly better option when you do not have enough space for a water filter.
Taste: If you aren’t comfortable carrying a water filter and aren’t looking to boil the water either, iodine tablets can be the next best option. While these tablets result in a rusty and almost metallic taste to the water, they are extremely convenient and portable.
Finally, in addition to all our given tips, check the following additional tips for better purification of water at a campsite.
- If you’re carrying water containers, make sure you separate the dirty ones from the cleaner equipment.
- If you’re using a water filter, make sure you read the manufacturer’s instructions. Every filter is different and comes with a different working mechanism.
- Use a proper sanitizer for preventing the cross-contamination of water.
- Make sure the toilet and the area for washing dishes are at least two hundred feet away from the primary source of water.
First Aid Kit
Bonus 32-Piece Mini First Aid Kit: Compact, Lightweight for Emergencies at Home, Outdoors, Car, Camping, Workplace, Hiking & Survival
Accidents always come unannounced. They can happen when you are least expecting it. That is why it is important to have an extensive and well-stocked kit of first aid items. While we do understand the space constraints, it is best to include as many of the following items as you can.
- Different types of bandages.
- Tape and gauge.
- A pair of tweezers.
- Medicine for cough.
- Any gel or lotion for relieving pain
- Medicine for diarrhea
- Plenty of antacids
- Antibiotic cream
- Antiseptic wipes
In addition to the items featured on the list, consider bringing in every other prescription medication that you might require in the middle of the trip. Once you’re done stocking the items, make sure they are kept in a proper carrying case. This will organize things and also ensure that every important thing is together. If you’re guilty of mixing up bags, use a bright-colored pouch and write ’emergency’ on it with a marker. One first-aid kit will suffice for several individuals. All you need to do is tweak the quantities to align it with the size of your group.
Solar Charger or Powerbank
25000mAh Battery Solar Power Bank Portable Panel Charger with 36 LEDs and 3 USB Output Ports External Backup Battery for Camping Outdoor for iOS Android (Black)
Since you’re heading for a camping tour, it is only likely that you won’t get the number of power outlets as you would have preferred. That is why it is important to carry solar chargers with USB hookups. This way, you can charge your phone, kindle, or any other electric gadget through the power harnessed from the sun. For better results get a waterproof solar charger that’ll automatically clip to the backpack.
If, however, you do not have solar chargers in your country, it is best to settle with an age-old power-bank. Although we do not vote for carrying plenty of electronic devices on a camping tour, it is good to carry a power bank as you don’t know when you need to attend a call. Since you’re also relying on the cellphone for details about the trail, it is important to keep it fully charged at all times. And when you’re out for a tour, what better device to charge your gadget than a power bank? Before adding the power-bank to your backpack make sure it is fully charged. After all, you want it to work when you need it the most.
S2000 - Brightest High Lumen Light with 5 Modes, Zoomable, and Water Resistant I Powerful Camping and Emergency Flashlights
If you’re heading for a camping tour, it is absolutely important to carry flashlights. This is not merely because of the safety they offer, but is also important for individual sanity- no, sharing one flashlight isn’t very enjoyable. Try getting a small, portable, and lightweight light that can be easily activated. Check the grip and make sure you can comfortably hold it. Finally, make sure it is bright enough for the darkest roads. Read up online reviews to ensure that you’re indeed investing in the right product.
You can also go the extra mile by investing in a headlamp or solar lantern. But even if you are carrying a headlamp, it is important to stock up on the flashlight. Why? Because flashlights help in many areas where a mere headlamp can’t. Unlike headlamps, a flashlight can be held extensively without much effort. If you have ample space in your car, consider getting both a flashlight and a headlamp. Otherwise, settle with a flashlight alone.
18-in-1 Multi-Purpose Pocket Knife Pliers Kit, Durable Stainless Steel Multi-Plier Multi-tool for Survival, Camping, Hunting, Fishing and Hiking (18 IN 1)
A solid multitool is one of the essentials in a car camping checklist. You can use the Swiss army knife variant if you’re really looking to go modern and trendy. When you carry a multi-tool you end up carrying several tools in one simple and fairly lighter package. They are also easy to operate and extremely simple to use.
Note that even basic multi-tools come with a range of pliers, scissors, blades, and screwdrivers. If, however, you want a fairly elaborate model, it will have everything you’ll practically need. Since you’re out for a car camping tour, we suggest you settle for the former. While it might be luxurious to have a trendy multitool, it is important to balance your luxury and comfort. A basic multitool will fit this bill and help address your needs in an instant. If you’re still not happy with the multitool, consider investing in a set of whistles. This way, you can inform people every time you’re in a jeopardy. If you are traveling in a group, make sure everyone has a whistle. So, the moment they blow this whistle, you know they are in danger and you can reach out to them almost immediately. Before getting the whistles, test them and make sure they’re functional. The last thing you want is a dysfunctional whistle that doesn’t work when you need it the most.
Large Scale Road Atlas (Rand McNally Road Atlas)
If you’re really looking to reach the right destination, consider investing in a good map. While Google Maps is a great option here, it is worth noting that you may not have internet connectivity especially if you are traveling in a distant area.
A solid map will be useful even as you hike along properly marked trails since it’ll help you assess how far you’ve reached and how far you need to go to finally reach the campsite.
You can, however, check your digital map before the tour to see whether the trail is safe. Either way, there’s no harm in carrying an extra map as it’ll only help you identify the right path.
Rinse Free Shower Wipes for Post Workouts, Camping, Backpacking, Outdoors and Hiking
As with everything else, it is important to carry the right toiletries for your camping tour. I, for instance, always carry a set of wet wipes to clean any and every mess that I usually end up incurring. That said, it is important to carry un-scented or mildly scented items. Since you’d probably be in the middle of a forest or the top of a mountain, it doesn’t make any sense to carry heavily scented items. Common items would be shampoo, toothbrush and paste, toilet paper, hand sanitizers, and towels.
While you can wear practically anything while on a camping tour, it is important to bring a set of layers or fleece clothing for staying warm. You’d especially need them at night when the temperature falls down by several degrees. You should also invest in proper quality camping shoes without going too overboard. If a part of the camping involves hiking as well, make sure the shoes have a solid grip.
Other than the mentioned items, you should carry appropriate rain gear, socks, light shirts, fleece items, pants, shirts, hats, gloves, swimming suits, and sunglasses. Also, carry a set of clean underwear whenever you’re out for the trip. This should be in addition to the underwear you thought you’d already carry.
Additional Car Camping Items
The ultimate car camping checklist has the essential gear you will need during the trip, there are some additional items that you should consider. For instance, if you are traveling with your family or friends, consider carrying board or card games for entertainment. While you can always curl up around the fireplace for a comfortable storytelling session, there are moments when we all get bored. For situations like these, fun, portable games can be an ultimate savior.
You can also carry books if you are fond of reading. Although a camp is no place for reading, you never know when you might need an old friend. Other equally relevant additions include a camera and binoculars. While the binoculars will help you with bird and animal watching, the camera will help you capture some of the best moments from the camp.
The Best National Parks For Car Camping
If you are planning to camp in a nearby national park, here’s a list of your top options. Keep reading to know more about the best National parks in town. This will help plan your trip the right way and also open plenty of options in terms of choosing the destination. Here’s everything you need to know.
Smoky Mountain National Park
Spanning across almost half a million acres, this is one of the top spots if you’re planning to camp in a forest. Since the park stretches across North Carolina and Tennessee, it is one of the best diversions for your upcoming East Coat Road Tip.
Ideal for the winter months, the Big Bend features three fully established camping grounds. The best part: every ground comes with a fresh new perspective. The first and largest of the lot is Rio Grande village. This area has around 100 campsites and 43 among them can be booked beforehand. The Cottonwood Campground is fairly smaller with 24 sites. This one doesn’t have a pre-booking facility. Finally, you can also choose the spectacular Chisos Basin which features 60 campsites among which 26 can be pre-booked.
Featuring more than 1,000 campsites, the Glacier Park is probably one of the best options on our list. This park covers almost 1 million acres of land featuring beautiful mountains, clear blue lakes, and diverse wildlife. You will also find plenty of recreational activities here.
Yellowstone National Park
When it comes to American National Parks, Yellowstone sets a standard that’s almost impossible to surpass. Teeming with beautiful wildlife and excellent geothermal facilities, camping here is a true delight. As of now, you can choose from twelve different camping grounds in the area. That said, only five among them offer a pre-booking facility.
Joshua Tree Park
Popular as a global destination for rock-climbing, this park makes way for numerous recreational activities. In addition to rock climbing, you can also try the tedious hikes. Either way, you will get a spectacular view that’ll be etched in your memory for a lifetime. The iconic tree here makes your camping experience even more organic.
Important Camping Tips
As with everything else, it is important to follow the right guidelines while car camping. Here’s what you need to know.
Know the Permits
It goes without mention that you need to be duly familiar with the permits of your preferred camping ground. Since you’re out on a car camping tour, check the rules in a special context to the car. See where you can park the car and stay well-informed of the fees you might incur.
Set it Up
Once you’re done fixing the right spot, consider setting the camp up in a flat, and completely shaded spot. As you unload the vehicle, make sure you do not crowd or create issues for anyone during the process.
If you’re not sleeping in the tent and are using the car instead, you won’t get proper access to showers at all times. That is why ace the hygiene game by carrying a well-stocked toiletry kit that isn’t just efficient but also ready for the road.
But, keep in mind, it might be possible to shower at the campsite.
P.S: No-rinse shampoos and hand sanitizers are a must-have. For other items, refer to our checklist.
Open the Windows
If you are sleeping in the car, you’d probably want everything closed. But as you breathe throughout the night, the windows might be fogged up in spots you’re least expecting. That is why it is important to work on the ventilation department. One of the easiest ways to do this is by slightly opening the sunroof or the window. Just make sure it isn’t big enough for animals to enter.
Keep Food Inside the Car
If you are sleeping in a tent, it might be tempting to carry plenty of food inside. But that isn’t always the safest bet. This is why you should keep the food inside the car. For perishable items, make sure they are in the cooler, before placing them inside the car. This will keep the items safe from all vulnerabilities.
FAQs About Car Camping
Now that you have a detailed car camping checklist and a list of the top destinations for a camping tour, it is important to address FAQs. Yes, even with all this information, some of us may have doubts about their impending tour. Let’s find out more about it.
How Do I Know If The Camping Spot Has Fresh, Drinkable Water?
If you are planning to camp in a park, it is best to check their website before heading for the tour. Unlike desolate forests or mountain tops, parks always come with a source of water like spigots. You can use this to fill in the water bottle.
If you are still not confident, consider consulting your issue with the park ranger. He will inform you about the nitty-gritty of the campsite and also provide relevant information about water sources.
How to Handle Adverse Weather while camping?
As previously mentioned, you should always carry waterproof tents and sleeping bags. Additionally, you should also dress in multiple layers. If it’s raining wear your rain jacket or any poncho. Since your tent is waterproof, spend time inside it playing board games with your family or friends.
Will I Get to Shower while camping?
Whether or not you will get a chance to shower will entirely depend on the type of campground you’ve picked. Certain campgrounds have a facility for a shower. This can be a nice indoor shower with a solid influx of hot water. Alternatively, it can be a tiny, external water spigot. Check online or consult the park ranger for updated information about the shower facilities.
Will Every Campground Permit a Campfire?
Sadly, not every campground will permit you to start campfires. In fact, some of them even come with a fire ban. Like everything else, look up online or consult the park ranger to see if this facility is available. In case you’re not allowed to build campfires, bring your stove (as mentioned in our car camping checklist). Also, make sure you follow every other camping regulation correct.
Should I cook while camping?
Of course, you should! Although we recommend bringing in dry snacks for the camping tour, you cannot rely on them for days. Use your cast iron pan over the stove and cook a hearty meal with your family or friends.
What Activities Can I Try While Car Camping?
Depending on the camping destination, you can try a range of activities like hiking, swimming, rock climbing, fishing, and more. You can also do yoga, whip up meals, curl up with your book, or just relax. The decision is all yours!
How to Get Camping Clothes?
You do not need special camping clothes, the ones you have at home will suffice. Run through our car camping checklist to get a list of clothes you might need. If, you are planning to shop online, always check dimensions and sizes before getting the clothes.
Should I Plan any Hiking Before Camping?
Ideally, you should plan a hiking trip beforehand. While it is great to go with the flow and follow your instincts, it doesn’t hurt to do a tad bit of planning either. As previously mentioned, do ample research before finally zeroing in on any campsite. If you are really looking forward to hiking, check if the camping spot has any hiking trails nearby.
I once camped at a site that had a hiking site almost two hours away. The worst part: I had to park my car 20 feet away from the spot. If you do not want a similar situation, always plan and research on the hiking trails. Also, regardless of the destination, just ensure you have complete clarity about the route of the hiking trail from the campsite and vice versa. Since even the easiest routes may appear different in the wake of weather changes, it is best to always have a digital and physical map during the trail.
What Safety Precaution Should I Follow?
While camping might be slightly risky, it isn’t entirely dangerous. Most of the trips are fun with almost no event. But it is still good to plan for the worst scenarios. Very often, people have witnessed tragedies due to unnecessary risks. So, avoid taking these risks in the first place. Here are some of the things to consider.
Be Familiar with the Route: We get it. The entire essence of camping lies in chartering unknown territories. But even then, it is important to have some degree of familiarity with the route. If you are heading to a completely new camping spot, do plenty of research over it. Familiarize yourself with the route and consider carrying a navigational tool like a compass.
Tell People: While this might appear inane at the outset, informing a friend or a colleague about your impending camping destination and expected return date can make some major difference in the event of an unpleasant situation. So, if something terrible happens and the person in question doesn’t hear back, they will immediately focus on getting proper help for you.
Get Your Emergency Gear: While we already mentioned this in our car camping checklist, this is yet another small reminder. Bring the right items and avoid getting things that are completely untested or broken. Like the tent or the sleeping bag, it is important to test your camping gear before putting them in the bag. Since you will rely on this significantly, you cannot afford any loopholes.
Understand the Local Wildlife: Yes, you should also spend time understanding the local wildlife. Do your research and check if any specific wild animal, like bears, can be an issue in the area. This will also help you to store food items the right way. In addition to big, wild animals, you should also take ample precaution against venomous animals like snakes or moose. At the end of the day, you should have complete insight into the things and actions you need to perform for enhancing the level of safety.
Always be Respectful: While camping in part is about fun and mirth, it is also about respecting the unique rules of nature. If you’re in a spot with other campers, be respectful to them as they are here to enjoy wildlife just like you.
Now that you have a clear insight into the things you should carry for the tour, what are you waiting for? Stock up on the right gear and head for your adventure right away. You now have the ultimate car camping checklist, so you won’t have any difficulty throughout your adventure.
We understand that every individual is unique with different needs so be sure to personalize this list and consider adding other gear to make your trip more enjoyable. Use the ultimate car camping checklist for the necessary gear for a worry-free and enjoyable camping tour.
See you at the campsite!
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