BEGINNER'S CAMPING GUIDE: PLANNING, EQUIPMENT, SAFETY

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BEGINNER'S CAMPING GUIDE: PLANNING, EQUIPMENT, SAFETY

Are you tired of the same summer resorts where you stay each summer for the classic week-long holiday? Do the city's turmoil and the daily concerns get you tired and you want to try something new for a few days? One of the most pleasant experiences can be a trip with the tent, either on the seashore or in the mountains, or in any corner of nature isolated from the rest of the restless world.

But bear in mind that this is not a typical trip. At the campsite you do not have room service, you can not complain to anyone that the sheets have not been changed and there are no 'à la carte' restaurants. However, the tent is special, perhaps due to the fact that it does not have all the things mentioned above. The experience of living amid nature is completely new. Here's everything you need to know to organize the perfect tent tour.

 

Plan the trip

The necessary equipment

How to choose the tent

How to choose the sleeping bag

How to choose the mattress

How to choose the campsite

Fire safety measures

Useful tips


Plan the trip with the tent

If you have no camping experience, you should consider making a plan. Preparations are important and, if you do not consider all the planning stages, you risk turning a unique experience in nature into a nightmare. Here are three steps to consider when planning a tent trip:

Step 1. Choose what you want to do on the trip

The first question you have to ask yourself is "what do I want to do on this trip?" This will help you determine the route and other important details, such as:

  • activities: mountain trails, bike rides, meditating in quiet places, visits to as many unique places. Look for camping areas that give you these things and easy access to your favorite activities. If you are going with your family, it is advisable to have suitable places for children nearby.
  • access routes: do you want to go by car or train? The campsite is in an isolated area and you have a lot of walking on mountain trails with the backpack? Keep these things in mind when planning your trip.
  • camping conditions: many people want to have decent conditions and civilization even if you are staying in a tent, so you must choose a campsite that offers access to showers, a toilet or even running water and electricity. On the other hand, if you want an authentic experience, you can give up on any civilization, but you have to be mentally prepared for the lack of conditions.
Step 2. Find the perfect route

If you are traveling by train, check at what are the trains departing. It is a good idea to call the Railway Info Office to make sure that the train you want to takehas not been canceled in the meanwhile or has not changed route. It is equally important to choose the final station carefully, so as not to descend into a wrong stop, too many kilometers away from where you should have been.

If you want to get on the road with your car, find out what the road conditions are before you get behind the wheel. The most beautiful camping areas are isolated, and access is often made on country or forest roads. If you do not have a car powerful enough to cope with the road, it is preferable to rent one or simply choose a more accessible route.

Step 3. Establish the menu from home

"We find a store on the road" may be one of the worst answers you can tell when leaving on a tent trip. Food is one of the main worries you must have, along with the tent and sleeping bag. Prepare a list of all daily meals before you leave home and shop at a supermarket, do not leave them to chance.

When shopping, you need to consider the time you want to spend in nature, but also the perishability of food. Do not fill your luggage with meat, because they will not last more than a day, especially if you go a lot in the sun. Here are the main foods you should focus on:

  • vegetables - potatoes, tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers;
  • fruits - apples, plums, lemons;
  • canning - stews or even canned food;
  • water - you cannot rely on the springs you will meet, it is advisable to have enough bottled water at your disposal, at least for drinking.

 

The necessary equipment

The necessary equipment for a tent trip is divided into several categories and can be as complex as you want, with the difference that if you want to go with the backpack on the mountain, it is preferable to keep only the absolutely essential things.

If you still want to go by car on the expedition, then you will have enough space in the trunk to make your tent experience a memorable and comfortable one.

Camping equipment:

  • one or more tents - depending on the number of persons;
  • backpack - must be large enough to carry the tent and accessories;
  • sleeping bags - one for each person;
  • isoprene - one, at least, for each person;
  • mattress - it may be inflatable, but remember to take a pump, in this case;
  • extra beds - because the nights can be colder at high altitudes.

Clothes:

  • boots;
  • warm clothes;
  • pajamas;
  • dust cape;
  • cap - if you go to the mountain, at higher altitudes.

Camping accessories:

  • flashlights;
  • additional batteries;
  • matches or lighters;
  • antitank spray;
  • first aid kit;
  • sunscreen cream.

Kitchen accessories:

 

How to choose the tent

The main criteria to consider when you want to buy a camping tent is the number of people you have to shelter. Most tents are made for two, three and four people, but you must consider the space available before making the final choice. Here are some important things to consider.

  • A four-person tent is ideal for three: there is enough space for luggage and equipment that cannot be left outdoors.
  • Opt-in for tents in the three-season category: they are sufficiently resistant to any weather conditions that might surprise you in the spring, summer or autumn;
  • Choose a tent with an extra room only if you go camping with a car: these tent models are usually heavy and are not recommended for backpacking trips;
  • The most common materials of which the tents are made are nylon, polyester or material composed of cotton and polyester fibers. Choose a high-quality nylon fiber tent, waterproof and high tear resistance.
  • Make sure that the material from which the tent is made is impermeable and, if in doubt, complete the luggage with a waterproof tarp, to cover the tent in case of a storm;
  • One of the safest methods to determine if a tent is of good quality is the zipper. The best tents have double zippers, and the material is extremely durable and waterproof.

 

How to choose the sleeping bag

The sleeping bag is another notable equipment for a successful tent trip. Before you buy it, you must consider some important criteria:

1.Comfort at low temperatures

Usually, the tents are chosen according to the degree of comfort in the conditions of low temperatures. If we follow this criterion, there are three types of sleeping bags:

  • summer bags - comfort temperature is about 0 degrees Celsius;
  • three-season bags - comfort temperature is about minus 10 degrees Celsius;
  • winter bags - comfort temperature is between minus 15 and minus 25 degrees Celsius.

The comfort temperature is the temperature at which you are neither hot nor cold in your sleeping bag. Also, there are two temperatures on the sleeping bag label: extreme minimum temperature and extreme maximum temperature. These are the minimum and maximum temperatures at which the sleeping bag offers protection for six to eight hours.

2.The type of filling

The type of filling is essential for the quality of the sleeping bag.

  • natural padding - this is almost always about fluff, and among the advantages is that it takes up little space and heats up faster;
  • Synthetic padding - are sleeping bags filled with synthetic fibers, non-allergenic, and are usually cheaper than sleeping bags with natural padding, but less efficient in terms of heating.

 

How to choose the mattress

Another key element is the mattress or isoprene, a piece of equipment that sits under the sleeping bag and offers additional protection from moisture and cold. Depending on your preferences, but also on the budget available, you have a choice between several types of mattresses and isoprene, which can have different thicknesses. Here are the main models to choose from:

  • isoprene is a light material, cheap and with different functionalities. It is the most common option among camping passionates because isoprene has a more profitable price compared to the other alternatives.
  • inflatable mattress: it inflates with the pump and offers better protection to cold than the isoprene. It is, at the same time, even more comfortable, but it can be bulky, so it is best to take it with you if you're traveling by car.
  • self-inflating mattress: these are the same qualities as the inflatable mattress, but it is equipped with a pump that inflates, without having to put in any effort. It is also more expensive.
  • insulated foam mattress - resembles isoprene, but thicker.

 

How to choose the campsite

One of the most important things to look after is to ground you're deciding to set camp on.

  • the land must be a perfect flat, clean of stones and twigs;
  • do not place the tent in a valley: in case of rain, all the water will gather in it;
  • place the tent on higher ground;
  • make sure you are near an easy access path;
  • look for or source of water for dishwashing.

Camping is a matchless experience that allows you to become on with natures and, therefore, yet can involve more downside risks, over hotels or guesthouses. Here are the main dangers to consider when choosing the campsite:

  • sun exposure - do not place the tent in an area in direct sunlight. Too much exposure to the sun's rays can lead to dehydration.
  • source of drinking water - if you are not in a campsite set up, it is preferable not to consume water from the surrounding sources. Even a mountain stream can isolate a contaminated area, so it is preferable to consume bottled water.
  • Poisonous plants - nettles, mushrooms, other pests, or even plants whose fruits can be pests.
  • insects and wild animals - before assembling the tent, check the terrain, to eliminate the snakes or spiders, if necessary. It is also advisable to contact the locals around the area and ask if there have been observed dangerous wild animals, such as wild boars, wolves or bears.
  • Don't forget to protect yourself with anti-mosquitoes sprays, as these parasites are abundant in nature and can cause major discomfort.

Finally, the best advice you should follow is to camp in special arranged places only.

 

Fire safety measures

You cannot spend a camping night without setting the fireplace. It is necessary to be protected in case of fire, for you and nature itself, taking into consideration the possible consequences of spread fire.

  • light the fire only in specially arranged areas, otherwise, you could be fined;
  • clean the dry vegetation from the fire area, otherwise, the sparks and the tact could ignite it;
  • do not get too close to the flames and do not feed the fire with too much wood;
  • keep beds and other clothing away from fire;
  • do not let children get too close to the fireplace and keep an eye on them;
  • if you have the opportunity, take a fire extinguisher with you;

 

Useful tips

A camping trip - either to the sea or to the mountainside - it is not a Sunday walk, so you need to consider a few useful tips when you're deciding upon staying at a guesthouse or cottage or sleeping close to nature.

-Do not make false impressions: a trip to the tent is not a vacation at the hotel. If you want to have decent conditions, you have to procure them yourself.

-Prepare yourself psychically: consider all the unexpected things that can happen in the usual way - bad weather, storm, cold temperatures, wild animals, minor accidents - and come up with solutions in time.

-Learn how to use the equipment: the tent is not installed alone, so it's a good idea to mount it and dismantle it several times somewhere in a yard or park, just to make sure you know what to do once you arrived at the campsite.

-Do not forget the warm clothes: no matter how voluminous it is and how good your tent is, the cold is almost just a constant of the tent and you have to be prepared for it.

 

In the end, don't forget that camping is the only alternative that breaks you apart from civilization and allows you to one with nature, to be a part of it. There is no room for high expectations and, more importantly, people are guests here, as opposed to the concrete jungle in the cities.

 

However, even a few days spent in the heart of nature will have an impact that you would never expect. All those who tried camping for the first time returned home with priceless memories and a newly discovered love for nature. So set aside the restraints, take a piece of paper, a pen and start planning your first tent trip. 

You can also check our latest guide on CAMPING TIPS&TRICKS which will definitely have you covered and all set for your future trip to the nature's heart.


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