Even if you’re going camping for the first time, it’s likely you’ll already know of some of the more essential items and tools that you should be taking with you out into the wilderness. Regardless of whether you are heading into woodland, up a mountain or into somewhere deeper and darker altogether, there are a few items every camper should make sure they have with them in order to get the most of the experience, and in order to make sure that they are keeping safe while away from relative civilisation! Here are a few ideas to get you started, based on our experiences as seasoned campers and outdoor adventurers!
A Big Rucksack
Let’s start with the fairly obvious! A big, sturdy rucksack built for the purposes of carrying heavy duty items, clothing and more besides over long distances is always recommended. Modern rucksacks and backpacks have plenty of handy compartments available so that you can store water, provisions, first aid items and more besides, all easily within reach. While you’re camping, your rucksack or backpack is going to be your entire life – on your back – so find one that’s reliable and one which doesn’t skimp on the volume or weight limit.
The Right Tent and Sleeping Apparatus
Once again – painfully obvious even to those who have never been camping – but our point here is to never leave things to chance with a tent that’s necessarily cheap for the sake of being cheap. If you’re travelling as a pair, go for a three-person model for that added space and comfort – if you’re heading up into the heavens or are expecting to visit the countryside towards the latter half of the year, make sure you opt for a tent that’s water-resistant and which comes with plenty of rigid and reliable pegs to get yourself staked down as firmly as possible. You can also buy tent pegs separately, too – and for maximum grip, we strongly suggest you look beyond your tent’s default offerings wherever possible. Don’t forget – you don’t always need to go for a sleeping bag, either – as plenty of fold-up camping beds are available at lower and lower prices these days. Take a look at the sales!
Getting away from it all means getting away from certain facilities – and when it comes to staying safe on the go, regardless of whether you are hiking or attending a festival, you’re going to need to make sure you have a healthy provision of first aid supplies should you injure yourself or find yourself in need of extra support. You’ll be thankful for it should you ever need it – so don’t risk leaving without packing it in with everything else.
A Mobile Phone and Solar Battery Pack
Yes – there’s plenty of campers and outdoor adventurers out there who will gleefully say that a mobile phone detracts from the joys of camping – but it goes without saying that having access to a constant line to ensure you can call emergency services if you need to if always going to be a good idea. What’s more, if you have access to 4G data on the move, you’ll be able to use a free GPS app such as Google Maps to find your way around easily. Along with a smartphone or mobile, we advise you look at taking on a portable battery pack to ensure that your device is always powered up and ready to go – there are plenty of solar-powered models available for a little extra cash, but if it means always being switched on when in the middle of nowhere, we strongly recommend you consider it.
A Portable Water Purifier or Filter
Again, these gizmos may set you back a little bit of money when it comes to your overall camping budget, but we certainly think a water purifier is worth the cash. These portable systems can be easily used to help render wild water which would otherwise be unsanitary or unhealthy for human consumption to be freed from the constraints of bacteria – which of course means you can now freely drink from any well or source you find. Do make sure you opt for a high-end model to get the best results – a good portable water filter should offer you no worries or concerns, and it will more than pay for itself in the long run. It’ll save you wasting money and plastic buying bottled water.
The Right Stove
Gas stoves and portable camping cookers come in various shapes, sizes and price ranges these days, but the best thing to do is to find the right model and range for your needs. You can easily opt for a dual hob if you’re cooking for more than a few people, but if you’re going it alone or roughing it as a pair, you can buy a compact gas stove with pots and pans to keep you cooking wherever you may be.
A Good Penknife
The oldest advice is always good advice – never be without a penknife. While a smartphone can now easily act as your torch, compass, emergency contact and entertainment all in one while you’re camping away, what’s going to do all the cutting for you? Good penknives come with various attachments and tools, meaning that whether you need to cut rope, open a bottle or make use of a handy pair of scissors, you’re always going to be well-equipped. Once again, if you have money in your budget, go for the most reputable and feature-rich options – consider it an investment.
A Weather Plan
Lastly, here’s one you can’t buy – an idea of what the weather is going to be like. Always plan ahead before you embark on any camping trip for changes in the weather and in the temperature – as it’ll dictate to you which clothes you need to take, how much waterproofing you feel is necessary, and which routes you should take when out and about. Again, your phone can do this – but always plan ahead!