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Must Have Equipment For First-Time Campers

Preparing for your first camping trip requires a bit of planning. You can use an online checklist to make sure you pack all the essentials. Rather than concern yourself with glamping at this point, plan for a first time outing that ends in you wanting to camp a second time.

Many first time campers choose equipment based on sales or sales representatives’ suggestions, but asking an experienced camper makes more sense. Here are a few camping items you cannot do without.

Choosing a Tent

Choose a tent with standing room. It should measure at least six feet in height if your height is less than six feet, at least six feet and six inches in height if your height is up to six feet six inches. You need that headroom for comfort. No person enjoys bending over for everything.

Also, choose a tent that divides into rooms. These should either tie at the sides to form a fabric wall or zip shut. At least two rooms provide you a separate place to toilet or change clothes.

The tent should include one or two zip shut front pockets that open on the inside and outside. These trash pockets let you store a trash bag inside the small pocket area so you can separate it from the tent interior. You will not draw animals this way, but you would if you kept your trash hanging from a tree limb or otherwise stashed outside.

first time campers - tent camping

Toileting in a Tent

Many people think that camping still means going to the bathroom behind bushes or a tree. It does not. Purchase a portable toilet for about $50 to $70. These toilets use a refillable water tank on top of a storage tank. Your waste flushes into the storage tank using the water from the water tank. You only need to dig one hole after about five days to bury the storage container contents. Rinse it out with bleach and water, then refill the water tank to use it for another week. This is a common piece of equipment used by anthropologists, geographers, and archaeologists when on research trips that require camping. You can use normal toilet paper or eco-paper with these. The thick plastic construction and bleach additive keep the toilet from smelling.

Charging Your Items with Solar

Rather than hauling tons of batteries with you, purchase a solar charger with a USB interface. This lets you charge the power pack while hiking or enjoying the camp’s amenities such as a fishing hole or swimming. At night, you plug into the USB interface to charge your phone, laptop, and lanterns.

solar power camping

Mealtime and Cooking

You could “rough it” and cook over an open fire, but you might find preparing a gourmet meal a challenge. Hot dogs can seem challenging if you have never cooked over an open flame. Instead, purchase a combination propane heater and cooktop for about $99. These devices provide the heat of a traditional home space heater with a top that resembles an oven burner. You cook on the burner just as you would any other oven. You can purchase a camping cookware set for about $20. These kits nest four or five pots and pans inside one another with attachable handles. Once nested, they slip into a canvas carrier that takes up about the same space as a canteen. This type of kit provides all the cookware needed to prepare a normal meal.

You can either cook what edibles you gather, catch while fishing (or kill while hunting if you’re into that) or you can take ready-to-eat meals or ingredients with you. What you decide to eat remains up to you, but heating it up makes everything taste better.

How much propane you need depends on the length of your trip and how many times per day you plan to use the cooker or heater. If you need to run the heater all night in the tent, you will require more small canisters of propane. If you hike to your camp rather than drive, you need to purchase small cans of propane so each person can carry one. This is simple weight distribution since a gallon of propane weighs a bit as does the canister.

first time campers - campfire cooking

Far from glamping, these modern essentials can make a person’s first camping trip one of many. This type of camping equipment, available at Adventure Gear, solves many of the problems that inexperienced campers have that precludes them from wanting to camp again.

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