Tent Camping Basics for Newbies

“Wow, you’ve never been camping before? You would love it!” How many times have you heard that from friends of yours who spend time all their in the great outdoors? Yet despite all of your buddies and acquaintances telling you to go into the woods, you still haven’t gotten around to doing it. 

Until now. You’ve finally decided to try spending some time at your local campground. But you aren’t sure what you need, what to do, how to survive, you’re basically a newbie to the world of camping. Well, congratulations and your friends are right – you are going to love it. Now let the pros at Setzer’s World of Camping offer you these essential camping tips to ensure that your first experience is a positive one. That way you’ll want to go out again and again. 

But let’s not get ahead of ourselves here. First things first, you need to be well-prepared for your initial visit and we’re going to show you how to make the most out of your trip and help you gather everything you need to make it a memorable excursion.

Things to Consider

Since this is your first time, you don’t need to go crazy when it comes to outfitting yourself with the right gear. In fact, you may want to try and borrow as much of the big stuff as you can. Things like a tent, a sleeping pad, and a sleeping bag may not be things that you currently own, so you should see if you can get them from friends or relatives. You might be going camping with them, in which case you should be able to sleep in the same tent (if it’s large enough) and perhaps someone has extra gear to loan you. 

Pack Accordingly

You do not want to be stuck outside with inappropriate clothing. You should pack for any type of weather; be it rain or shine. The time of year you are going to camping will help you decide what that means, if it’s the fall or winter, then you’re going to need to pack really warm. The spring or summer, lighter but still enough so that you are ready in the event it starts to rain. 

The nights can get colder than the daytime, so keep that in mind as you pack your gear. It may be 72 degrees in the daytime, but the temperatures can drop significantly once the sun goes down. So just be ready, because nothing ruins a camping trip quicker than being cold and uncomfortable for the next two or three days. 

Food

Much like with your clothes, you want to be prepared with all the food you are going to need to keep yourself well-fed. Unless you plan on going out to hunt, kill, and prep your meals from surrounding wildlife, you will need to pack enough for meals, snacks, drinks, and above all, have the right receptacles to store it all. 

A cooler will be ideal for keeping your food fresh and preventing your ice and cold packs from melting earlier than expected. If you’re bringing perishables, a cooler is essential and you need to be able to keep everything inside cold for as long as you’ll be out there. 

Don’t forget about the heat you’ll need for prepping your food. Some veteran campers will build a fire on which they cook their meals, but since this is your first time going out you may want to bring a camp stove. If you’re spending a time at a campground, you may want to check to see if there are grills on site for campers to use. If they do, then all you’ll need is some charcoal, lighter fluid, and matches. 

Last thing to remember, bring along forks, knives, paper plates, cups. All of the utensils and dinnerware you’ll need to enjoy your food out in the sticks or at your campground. 

Sufficient Lighting

When night falls, the only light you can rely on is that from the moon. We all know that’s not reliable in the slightest, if there are clouds in the sky, you won’t have light to move around by. So, you’re going to need some form of illumination like a flashlight or lantern. You can build that fire you plan to cook over and use the light from that, but be sure you have this worked out ahead of time.

Think ahead and you won’t be stuck in the dark on your first trip out to the local campground. 


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