How to prepare for a camping trip – Part 1

I remember my family’s last camping trip, we went to the Guadalupe River in Texas. It was great, even though it rained one night, and we had to get up quickly to put the covering on the tent, our camp was broken into, but luckily we had our big dog Lucky with us and he scared them off, and we all got sun burnt, because we forgot the sunscreen.

As I have already mentioned, camping is a lot of fun, it is even more fun if you have your family, and friends around you. For some people camping is still even enjoyable if you do it outdoors. Especially if your family is on a budget, camping is a great alternative to a pricey vacation, or an expensive hotel. I will try to give you some tips, that my family has learned from camping trips over the years.

#1 Set a Budget

Even though camping is a relatively inexpensive activity, as with any vacation, it is easy to over spend if you are not careful. The best way to avoid this, is to have a set budget before you leave home. Be sure to include the main things, like the admission price of the park or place that you plan to camp at, money for groceries or dinner, and gas to get there. To maximize your budget, find a place that also offers, plenty of free or inexpensive activities as well, such as hiking, swimming, or fishing. Be sure also to bring some money that will be used, only in the event of an emergency.

#2 Bring all the Necessary Supplies

To make sure that you bring all the necessary supplies, you might try writing a list, with a category for what each family member would need. Don’t forget medications, such as any prescriptions that are taken daily, and allergy or asthma medications, and a well stocked first aid kit, including anti-itch cream, and aspirins for headaches. Also, please remember to bring sunscreen, light clothes, and sunglasses, if you camp in the summer, and layered clothes, jackets or coats, and gloves and hats, for the winter months. Be sure to check your tent over for holes if you plan to stay in it, bring warm sleeping bags, and you might even want to invest in a few good air mattresses for extra comfort, and also bring extra toilet paper, paper towels, and trash bags.

#3 Food

Depending on what your budget allows, you will have to decide whether you will be eating out, eating your meals at the campsite, or a combination of both. If you are eating at the site, you might want to go to the store close to where you want to camp, so the food doesn’t have to travel that distance in the car. Some good foods that would be good to get is, sandwich supplies, chips and dip, beef jerky, fruit, and raw vegetables. Be sure to bring a cooler, and purchase some ice, to keep the food cool. Be sure that food stays the correct temperature, for safety.

#4 Safety

Be safe while camping by being extra careful. If you bring a grill or camp stove to cook on, be careful while using it, so it doesn’t catch anything on fire, also watch campfires for the same reason. For safety sake, don’t let kids wander far from the campsite alone, and travel in pairs as much as possible. Lock anything valuable in your vehicle, or bring it in to the tent with you. It might also be a good idea to complete a safety id kit for your children,with their finger prints, and picture, and file it with your local police department, before you go. Also make sure that if your pets travel with you, they have all their tags, with your cell phone number written on them.

Overall camping is a great family activity, that can easily be done on a budget. Be careful, and have a great time.

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