Beginners Guide to Camping


So if you have never been camping before and would like to experience it and are a little worried that you have no idea how to do it, then relax. Camping is easy but you do need to be properly prepared. So you should really be thinking about which type of camping you would like to pursue and when you have ascertained this then you will know exactly which type of camping and outdoor equipment you will require. When you know which camping you are going to do and you have the equipment then you are home and dry. Camping is easy and a lot of fun. You have made a great decision in choosing to do it. Ok we shall give you a couple of examples of camping and a few tips as well to help you on your way.

Recreational Vehicle Camping (RV Camping)

This is just like living at home except your home has wheels. RV vehicles are fully equipped with cooking facilities, sleeping facilities and toilet facilities. The top end high quality RV vehicles have more amenities and luxuries than many homes to be honest and there is not much you have to think about in the camping equipment department. They are just like a hotel holiday where you bring yourself, your clothes and a credit card and off you go. You don’t even have to cook as you can just park up in any diner car park and eat there. But it’s nice to cook once in a while so it is a good idea to stock the fridge in the RV with basic essentials such as milk and cheese etc etc.

recreational camping

If you are thinking of buying a RV vehicle you must do your research before committing. A very good idea is if you think you have found a RV vehicle you would like to buy, then hire a similar model and take a camping holiday with it to see if the RV suits you in every way. They are not cheap to buy and with such a heavy investment as they are you don’t want to be stuck with one that does not function as you want it to. Maybe you find that you do not even enjoy RV camping. The tip here is to always try before you buy. Another tip that is very beneficial is to talk with other RV owners and ask them the pros and cons of their own vehicles. That way you will get a very good picture of a variety of models.

Camper Camping

This form of camping is not as luxurious as RV camping but it is very similar indeed and appeals greatly to those who want to get out there in nature with a little comfort and moveably but do not the finance or wish to invest the finance in a RV. The camper van such as probably the most famous of all, the Volkswagen camper, is a perfectly adequate base to have for camping. Inside you have the bed for people who do not wish to sleep on the floor and of course you have extra protection from any severe weather changes you may encounter. The camper is much smaller than the RV and most of them do not have shower or toilet facilities and in most cases also not a fridge either. But there is enough storage space for most of your camping and outdoor equipment and of course you don’t have to worry about carrying any of your camping equipment as the camper does it for you.

With a camping trip in a camper van you have to think and plan a little more than you would with a RV. For instance if the camper does not have a fridge it would be a very good idea for you to buy a small portable camping fridge or a cooler box of some sort to keep your food and drinks chilled. There’s nothing worse than waking up in the morning to warm sour milk. Electric power is also another issue with the camper van. You can alleviate this problem with a small generator, but if you do not want to do that then there are battery lights and heaters out there that you can buy. So it’s not such an issue actually but you must think about it.

Tent Camping

This is the version of camping that most people instantly relate to when they hear the word camping. With tent camping you really must think about all your needs and requirements before you set out on a trip. You have to consider about food, shower and toilet facilities and even light and warmth for the night time. Making a camping list of which camping and outdoor equipment you require is a must. You don’t want to be in the wilderness at night time with a touch only to find you forgot to bring batteries. Making a list and checking all your camping equipment is a time consuming chore, but one that is well worth while. If you don’t yet have a tent and are about to buy one try to get one that is lightweight and weather resistant. Gore-tex tents are fantastic and will give you all the protection you need. And how many people are there going with you? Having a tent too big is ok. But a tent too small is a very bad idea. So consider the size and what the tent is made from before buying one.

Backpacking

To many this is real camping and for me personally it is what I live for. I love it! Backpacking is more for the experienced camper and with this you definitely have to think more about the camping and outdoor equipment that you will need. Everything that you will take with you has to be carried by yourself on your back in the pack. So first things first, if you are going to do this and have not done it before, make sure you get yourself a very good rucksack. With the rucksack you need the capacity inside to be as big as possible but also for the bag to be comfortable on your back as well. Try out a few backpacks until you find the right one for you. Also any other camping equipment you buy has to be lightweight and compact as well. You will have limited space in your bag and by having compact camping equipment you will be able to pack and carry more items. The essential items we will go into on another page on this site in more detail. If you are going backpacking check out the weather conditions and predicted weather so you will be prepared. Good hiking boots are essential as are obeying signs such as “no trespassing”. And it’s also a good idea to backpack with a companion. If alone and something unfortunate should happen to you then you could find yourself in a very precarious situation.

Canoe Camping

I have done this once and thoroughly enjoyed it. So if you are planning on a canoeing trip then go for it! What you have to think of here though is that your camping and outdoor equipment has to be waterproof but you can actually carry more gear than with backpacking because the canoe takes the weight. Canoe camping is for the more experienced camper and if you have never been in a canoe before then you really should take some lessons before you embark upon your venture. And of course the ability to swim is a must. If you can go to the water and rent a canoe and try it out. If you enjoy then go for this. I’m sure you will have a great time.

recreational canoe camping

Where? / Weather?

So there you have been given a few examples of types of camping and a couple of tips to help you on your way. The other things that you should be considering as well are where will you actually be camping ? And which weather conditions are you most likely to encounter ? They are quite important questions to ask yourself because the answers will decide for you the correct camping and outdoor equipment you will be taking with you.

Lets look at where first. If you are going camping in the woods then you will have plenty of shelter at your disposal from the sun or rain. But the major problem to all campers in the forest is that of bugs and mosquitoes and certain plants that cause irritations. So always take bug cream and soothing ointments. They are worth their weight in gold to the mosquito bitten camper! If you are going into the desert remember you will encounter 2 extreme conditions. During the day it will be scorching hot whilst at night time it will be extremely cold. Dehydration is the biggest concern here though as the air in the desert is dry and you are unaware of how much you perspire because the sweat evaporates so quickly off your skin. Sun block and water are the essentials you should plan for.

And now a couple of words on weather conditions. With camping in cold weather warmth is the issue. Make sure you have plenty of warm clothes and always wear them in layers. Staying dry is essential as well. A nice warm sleeping bag is something you will be very glad you bought. Hot weather camping is obviously the opposite and here make sure you stay hydrated. If you are hiking much it’s always ideal to have some salt tablets with you and also a small portable camping water filter or water purifier tablets in case you run out of clean fresh water. In wet weather pay vigilance to the terrain you are on. The rain can make terrains very difficult to deal with and injuries can occur. Make sure your tent is weather resistant with a material such as gor-tex and a good quality ground sheet is essential. So the secret to successful camping, whichever variety you decide to embark upon, is planning and selecting yourself the correct camping and outdoor equipment.

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