Summer is the peak season for camping, though more and more people decide to take some time off and reconnect with nature in spring and autumn as well. Not everyone is a fan of high temperatures; besides, camping off-season might be more comfortable considering the number of other campers.
Whatever dates you choose, whether you’re traveling by car, an RV, using public transportation, or on foot, you always need to take all the necessary precautions – according to the details of your trip. While traveling independently gives you more freedom to explore and do what you like, it also means that you’re the only one responsible for your safety.
In this article, you will find some useful tips on making sure you stay safe while camping. Don’t allow these worries to spoil your long-awaited vacation!
Choose a Means of Transportation and Plan Accordingly
If you use public transportation, get as many details as possible before deciding on your destination; you’d rather avoid being stranded in a remote location with no safe place to camp. While there, it wouldn’t hurt to ask the locals about the best spots.
If you plan to go camping on foot, bring a GPS device with you and make stops along the way. Pay attention to your health – do not overexert yourself; it is very easy to get lost in the woods.
If you choose to travel by car, search for a place that’s not too far away. This way, you won’t have to spend half of your trip driving or sleeping in the backseat.
If you have or plan to rent an RV, camping experts from Camp Addict advise checking the location of the available campsites in advance, making sure that they are nearby and that there is a network of tourist routes. Read reviews about the nearest grocery stores and gas stations. Some campsites have their own restaurants and other facilities, so it’s best to find out how far they are.
Remember to take your car, camper, or RV’s tire pressure gauge with you. Even if you don’t have any problems with the tires, it’s always better to check their pressure and refill them if needed.
Create a Safety Plan
Especially if you travel alone (but not only), make sure to create a safety plan. The first thing is to make a list of emergency contacts and numbers of people who can help you if you get in trouble. It would be great if you could contact your friends or relatives who live either near the area you’re going to or not too far from it. Don’t forget to include their addresses, phone, and email contacts in your list.
Make sure several people know when the trip will begin and when you expect to get back. They might want to remind you about your return date every now and then, just to avoid any misunderstanding.
It goes without saying that you should always have both a GPS and a map in case. You might also share your location in real-time with someone.
Moreover, make sure that you have enough food supplies and water in case you get stuck somewhere and can’t reach your destination. In most cases, it’s better to have some extra supplies than not enough.
What to Pack and What Not To Pack
If you have never been camping before, it would not be a bad idea to ask for advice from people who do it often. And if you’re still not sure what to pack or what not to pack, here is some useful information:
• Take enough clothes for the entire trip, as well as for different weather conditions and temperatures. Don’t forget about various layers that will help you stay more comfortable. It’s better not to take too many clothes – you might end up carrying them in your backpack, which can be pretty heavy. Remember that you’re going to sleep and shower in a small space.
• Don’t forget about the first aid kit with all the necessary equipment: bandages of various sizes, hand sanitizer, pain medications, antiseptic, bandaids, scissors, anti-diarrhea medicine, antihistamines for allergic reactions, etc.
• A flashlight is a must-have item. Make sure you have enough batteries with you; they can run out much faster than you think.
• Bring your own food. If you don’t, you might end up paying much more for low-quality meals prepared by someone else or find yourself stranded with no food at all. You can carry such supplies as cans, pasta, bread, rice, etc., they will last for a while even if the temperature drops at night. As for fresh fruit and vegetables, you need to think of something else – refrigerators are not available in most campsites.
• Don’t forget about mosquito repellent. Even if you plan to visit a bit cooler place during summer, mosquitoes are still around. Anti-mosquito sprays and lotions should protect you from bites. Be careful, though – some sprays and lotions can cause allergies or irritate your skin.
• Remember about sunscreen protection! The sun can burn your skin even when the temperature is not that high.
• Take water purification tablets with you. They can come in handy if there is no access to clean water nearby. However, don’t drink water from rivers or lakes – treat it first. Bring some plastic bottles with you – you can drink water from them without having to purify it.
• If you’re going camping with kids, take all the necessary items with you: first aid kit, medicine (in case of allergies), diapers (if you have an infant), sunscreen lotion, etc.
• Don’t forget your phone and a charger. It’s a good idea to buy a waterproof phone case or cover, as well as a waterproof bag for your charger. This way, you will be able to use your phone even in bad weather conditions. And don’t forget about the spare battery. If your phone dies, it can be very inconvenient, especially if you don’t have a traditional map.
• Take all the important documents with you: ID, credit cards, insurance policy, etc. You never know what can happen.
• Bring some cash. Many campsites only accept cash payments.
• Pack an extra tire tube, pump, flashlight, spare batteries, jumper cables, etc., in case your car breaks down.
Stay Safe and Enjoy!
Camping is a great way to spend your summer vacation or weekends off, either with family or friends or alone. It’s not as complicated as it seems, and you can do it without any special skills or equipment. Remember that if you’re traveling by car, RV, or camper, your vehicle will be your home; don’t forget to take care of it.
Just be careful, bear our advice in mind, and you will enjoy the wonderful feeling of being in touch with nature and all its beauty. Good luck!