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What to Pack for Summer Camping

Jun 07, 2019

By: Kat Thomson

The sun is shining, school is (almost) out, and it’s time to plan your getaway! But are you prepared? Here’s a list of useful, helpful items to help make your next camping adventure run smoothly and be full of summertime fun. We hope you’ll be a happy camper! 

Camping under the open sky at night can me a magical experience!Camping under the open sky at night can me a magical experience!Courtesy of Josh Hild on Unsplash

Be sure to pack these items for the great outdoors

  1. A headlamp or flashlight: headlamps are indispensable because they let you be hands-free, whether you’re reading in your tent, constructing the perfect s’more, or *ahem*, looking for the outhouse in the dark!
  2. Sunscreen: make sure you’re being sun-safe, especially since you’ll be outside all day long!
  3. Bug spray and anti-itch cream: keep those annoying mosquitoes away, especially in the early morning and evening. Hint: make sure to spray your ankles and backs of your knees; a favorite spot for pesky bloodsuckers.
  4. A hat: shades you from the sun AND covers up hot mess camping hair!
  5. A book (or two, or five…): camping should be a time to unplug and bury your nose in a good story *see the summer camp book recommendations*
  6. A reusable water bottle or travel mug: pack something with a lid to keep curious bugs out of your water (even a Mason jar is great for this), and remember to stay hydrated!
  7. Biodegradable/eco-friendly body wash: if you get the chance to shower, this can do extra duty as your soap, shaving cream and shampoo all in one.
  8. A deck of cards or portable board game: always lots of fun when camping with a group.
  9. Some art supplies like crayons or paint: you might be inspired to new levels of creativity.  
  10. Marshmallows: enough said.

Mmmm... nothing better than a gooey s’more!Mmmm... nothing better than a gooey s’more!Courtesy of Autumn Mott Rodeheaver on Unsplash

Awesome Summer Camping Activities

Of course you’ll be doing the usual summer camping things, like hiking, boating, riding a bike, chilling on a floatie and swimming! In addition, here’s a list of some alternative fun things to do while roughing it, whether you’re solo or with a group of friends.

  1. Go on a nature walk and make a list of any animals you see (insects can count too!)
  2. Write spooky or funny stories and then share them at night around the campfire. You could illustrate them as well!
  3. Play board games or learn a new card game (solitaire works too!)
  4. Do crayon or pastel rubbings of cool leaves/greenery that you find around your campsite. Or if you have paint, you could paint the objects and make nature prints.
  5. Wait until it gets dark and then play flashlight tag or kick the can.
  6. Sing songs around the campfire; they could be classics, new artists or even make up your own lyrics.
  7. Collect interesting-shaped stones (or shells if you’re camping near a beach) and paint them with cool designs. Hide them around your site for the next group of campers to find!
  8. Try to find and name as many constellations in the sky as you can. You might want to check out a book on astronomy from the library before you leave for your trip.
  9. Cook camp food over the fire like hot dogs, popcorn or bannock and, of course, have a s’mores-fest (see above packing list, re: marshmallows!)

Camping with friends and family? You’re going to make some great memories! Camping with friends and family? You’re going to make some great memories! Courtesy of Tegan Mierle on Unsplash
Happy camping!

What do you always make sure to pack when camping and what are some of your favorite summer camping activities? Share them in the comments!