Family camping trips can mean a lot of stuff. Before I had kids, we would carry everything we needed on our backs. Now, times have changed and we camp a little differently when it comes to kids! Every time we go on a camping adventure, we have a car full of gear, supplies, and more. After going on many trips, we have learned how to make packing a little easier.
One time when we camping, we drove almost 3 hours to find that I had forgotten the tent. Seriously, make a list or buy a camping packing list – and check it twice! There is a lot of stuff you probably want to bring camping, and it is amazing how forgetting one thing, no matter how big or small, can affect your trip. This could be a tent.. or it could be a lighter.
Pack in containers.
We pack things like our food and our cooking supplies in plastic bins. This is great for several reasons – it keeps food from getting crushed, you can pack up your food and keep it in the car away from animals, it keeps everything organized in one place, and you can pack it easily in the car. It is great to be able to have stackable containers. So when it is mealtime, we take out one bin, plop it on a picnic table, and then when we are done, it all goes back in and in the car so no worries about wildlife like bears.
Plus, when we get home, we keep a bin of cooking supplies in the basement for our next trip (nothing perishable – things like camping utensils, sponge, travel size soap, small cutting board, etc).
Packing cubes also can make packing easier. I usually put the kids and my stuff in one duffle – organized by packing cubes. When we set up our tents, the packing cubes go with each person to their sleeping bag.
Buy a rooftop carrier if possible.
We have a minivan.. and we also have a large Thule Rooftop Cargo Box. It is so useful! Instead of packing the van to the ceiling with stuff, we can put items on top of the car. This is great for stuff like camping chairs, and so much more.
Don’t bring firewood.
Firewood is messy and buggy, and it can contribute to the spread of invasive insects. We buy campfire wood at the campground. Some campgrounds won’t even allow you to bring in outside firewood.
Pack extras if you can fit it.
We try to prepare as much as possible. As long as it fits, I bring extras like lots of layers and changes of clothes, and stuff to do. Camping can mean rain, dirt, mud, etc. It is good to come prepared with extra clothing to change into as well as layers to accommodate for hot and cold weather. I remember hesitating to pack winter hats when we went camping one spring.. and boy was I glad I decided to bring them when nighttime temps dipped below freezing! I also bring extra stuff to keep the kids busy.
What tips do you have for a successful camping trip?
These tips sound like a lot of the things my parents used to do when my brothers were young. They used to go camping a couple of times a year.
My husband and I want to take the kids camping. They are 3 and 5 years old. It will be an interesting campout right? 🙂 These tips are very helpful.
I will glamp, but I will not camp. I will keep these tips in mind if we ever do that. We are really not outdoorsy people. Well, my daughter is. But we’re like “we’ll be inside, thanks.”
This was a really interesting read. I didn’t realize that outside firewood could contaminate other environments!
These are great tips but we never went on a camping trip. We do like hiking and running so we can adjust for smaller trips.
We are hoping to go camping for the first time this Summer. I appreciate the tips!
These are good tips. I will share this with my husband who loves camping
Great tips! I haven’t been camping in forever! I can’t wait to take my girls camping though when they get older!
We haven’t tried camping, These would be great tips if we would,thanks!
Thanks for this, it’s very helpful, I’ll definitely make the list before we planned to go camping again.
These are wonderful tips. I always find making a list helps too. That way you hopefully won’t forget anything.
I’ve never been camping before so these are useful to be. I wasn’t aware you could buy wood at the campsite. Great tip x
We are planning to go camping this summer! This list will help us a lot!
Yes to containers! that’s how I’ve always packed and it really helps!
These are geat tips for family camping trips. We are planning to to go camping this summer.
This is so cool! Thanks for these tips! My kids loves camping so much!
Your making me miss UK more and more, I wanna go back and go back to UK and explore Europe and what not