When you’re off to go camping, the gear you bring can make or break your trip! Whether you’re heading out to a resort or going backwoods camping, you will want to bring along the tools that will keep you comfortable and make the trip easier. Check out our top camping gear that will do just that for you!
RVs are the ultimate camping gear! RVs offer a lot of perks that tents don't, such as comfortable beds, kitchens, bathrooms, and couches. There’s nothing like spending the day in the great outdoors and then coming home to all the comforts and conveniences of a fully loaded RV. An RV is also great protection when the weather turns on you. Rain, sleet, winds, snow, extreme temperatures ... no problem! Most RVs are equipped with an A/C, heat, and a sturdy roof over your head so you can take cover when Mother Nature decides to make things interesting.
Camp chairs are a must-have item unless you really like sitting on the hard ground. Set them up around the campfire, along the riverbank for fishing, or under your RV awning for a relaxing afternoon. Camp chairs aren’t like your typical lawn chairs. They fold up and fit in their own easy-to-carry bag for convenient storage and transport. There are a lot of options out there when it comes to camping chairs, but they are not all created equal. Some camping chairs come with great features, like a built-in cooler, a footrest, an umbrella, and some even hang from trees! With camping chairs, you get what you pay for. The less expensive ones are uncomfortable and tend to bend or rip easily. And this is one camping item you'll use all the time, so spend your money wisely!
You can’t always be sure that your campfire will come through for you when you want to create a delicious meal. This may be due to a lack of dry wood, no suitable place to build a fire, or maybe your favorite camping meal requires more than what a simple campfire can deliver. Portable camping stoves offer an alternative to campfire cooking and are more versatile. They come with small fuel tanks and are easy to store and tote. These come in very handy if you don’t have a Dutch oven or cast iron skillet and want to cook something that will require a pan. Most pans can't handle being plunked into a fire, but they're perfect for a camp stove. There are many options available, including small, one-burner stoves to large ones that combine a cooktop with a grill and possibly even a small oven.
Technology is everywhere, even in the great outdoors! Thanks to handy solar chargers, we don't have to leave behind our cell phones, tablets, GPSs, or other devices when we hit the road for an outdoor adventure. Use the power of the sun to charge your devices by plugging them into a solar charger. There are a lot of choices when it comes to solar chargers, and again, you get what you pay for. The less expensive models don’t charge as well or as fast as more expensive ones and they require more sun to operate. Read online reviews for guidance before purchasing one.
A good backpack can come in handy in just about any situation. If you plan to spend your day out on the trails, you want to ensure you have a backpack that will not only have the space you need, but will be comfortable to wear while you hike. Backpacks made specifically for hiking are built a bit differently than a school backpack, and for good reason. Hiking backpacks offer more space and are better compartmentalized. Many feature stabilizers that run through the backpack to balance heavy loads. This helps you keep your balance and travel comfortably while wearing it. The straps are generally much more padded as well so they’re comfortable on your back and shoulders.
Humans can survive for about 3 days without water in an average temperature. That isn't very long! So it's extremely important that you have access to clean drinking water so you don't find yourself on the verge of dehydration when trying to enjoy the great outdoors. There are a lot of different products out there that make it simple to clean your own water while out in the wilderness. There are pouches and bottles that clean water once it’s poured inside for easy portability. Or check out the LifeStraw. You use it like a straw but it features a built-in filter so the water that reaches your lips is quickly filtered into clean, drinkable water. With all the products available that turn dirty, contaminated water into clear, drinkable water, there's no reason you have to risk your health by drinking stale, smelly water.
The way tents are made these days has surpassed the wildest dreams of our younger camping selves. Modern tents are much more durable and are rated for different situations. Make sure to consider the type of camping you want to do before you decide on a type. If you’re going to be camping in the winter, there are tents that are rated for cold weather and high winds. Some tents are small and meant for one person, while others are so large that they have separate rooms to accommodate a camping family.
Nothing beats the cozy cocoon of a sleeping bag on a cool night. There are many different types of sleeping bags for many different types of weather. Summer sleeping bags are lightweight, and winter sleeping bags are very thick and feature hoods to help you nestle inside. Do your research and shop around for the best sleeping bag for your camping style.
A GPS unit can come in very handy when you’re out camping. Unlike the GPS on your phone, a dedicated GPS will get you a much more accurate location. A phone GPS can be off by as much as a half a mile, which is a huge deal when you’re out in the forest. A dedicated GPS unit uses stations on the ground that work with the satellites to ensure your location is as accurate as possible. A dedicated GPS unit can find you within 6 feet. That’s a pretty big difference. Not only this, but GPS units can store points, so if you find that perfect scenic place to watch the sunset, or the best fishing hole you’ve ever seen, you can save the coordinates and come back to it. There are a lot of different types of GPS units out there, but look for ones specifically made for hiking, hunting, and/or fishing. These are designed for woods/forest navigation, not road navigation.
It may be tempting to just grab your old pots and pans when stocking your RV. While they will work, they aren’t ideal for camping. Some of the basics you want to look into include a Dutch oven, cast iron skillet, pie irons, and roasting sticks. A Dutch oven is a deep cast iron pot that can be set right in the fire and even have hot coals put on top of the lid for even heating. Try these delicious Stuffed Peppers when you bring a Dutch oven along. A cast iron skillet is great for camping because you can plunk it right in the fire and don’t have to worry about melting the handle. Use a cast iron skillet to make these Skillet Fried Tacos that your whole family will love! Pie irons are a staple of camping and will allow you to make a variety of delicious meals and treats. You just put two pieces of bread in it with whatever filling you want and hold it in the fire to toast it. You can make things like grilled cheese, pizza, pies, and much more with a pie iron. When you hit the store for graham crackers, chocolate bars, and marshmallows, you will probably find some cheap wooden roasting sticks right there in the aisle with them. Resist the wooden sticks! You can get reusable metal sticks that offer a longer (and safer!) handle, and can be used for other things. Then all you have to do is wash them and use them again. No need to worry about your stick catching on fire or breaking and falling into the fire.
There’s tons of camping gear out there that can make a great camping trip even better! These are just some of our favorites. What are your favorite go-to camping items? Let us know in the Comments section below. We'd love to hear from you!