If you have ever made the mistake of arriving at a camping area only to discover you left items behind that you are going to need, you know how important it is to make a checklist before leaving home.
Obviously, checklists are going to vary depending on what kind of camping trip you’re going on, the time of year, the age of your children, if applicable, and the amount of time you will be camping. Please feel free to download our checklist and add or remove applicable items.
Setting Up Your Camp Site:
Whether you are camping alone, with family or friends. Whether you are setting up camp in an established campground or on your own, here are items you’re going to need:
It’s probably a good idea to have a mattress, cot, pad or hammock that offer some cushioning to keep you off the cold, hard ground. Here are other items you might want to take into consideration in order to have a peaceful night’s sleep:
A Spare Blanket
Airbeds, Camp Beds, Self Inflating Sleeping Mats
An Air Pump
A Repair Kit for Air Beds
Your going to be camping for a certain amount of time. Make sure you have some place to sit, a place to eat and a place to store foods and other items. Never leave foods out in the open, you might just draw some night time critters!
A Storage Unit
It’s going to be very difficult to prepare foods if you do not have the necessary items to do so:
Woolen caps, mufflers, gloves and/or mittens for winter months
Personal Hygiene & Other Necessities:
You might be camping but that doesn’t mean you want to remain unkempt or nasty during your camping adventure.
Soap, Shampoo, Shower Gel
Toothpaste and Toothbrush
Towels and Face Cloths
Comb and Brush
Razor & Blades
Sunscreen and Chap-stick
Any Needed Personal Medications (never leave home without them)
A Medical Kit (every camper should have one, even for minor cuts or bug bites)
Entertainment & Relaxing Time:
Some of these items might depend on the amount of time you’ll be camping and what you plan on doing. But at some point, you will be at your campsite and want to just relax, especially if you have children with you.
Playing Cards, Board Games & Toys
Books & Magazines
Cameras, Batteries & A Memory Card
Frisbee & Ball (also good if you have a dog along for the ride)
Battery Operated Radio & Backup Battery (get updates on news and weather forecasts)
Mobile Phone & Charger (car chargers)
Guidebooks & Maps
A Compass or GPS
Bikes & Helmets
Electric Hook Up Cable
Planning & Organizing:
Always bring along pertinent paperwork that will aid you during your camping trip.
Maps & Directions
The Name, Address & Telephone Number of the Nearest Doctor
Any Reservation Information
A Notepad & Pen
Other Useful Items:
Sit down and make a list of various other items that might be overlooked but could come in very handy while camping. Here’s a list of what could be easily overlooked:
Lanterns or Torches (it beats stumbling around in the dark)
Extra Batteries & Bulbs
Insect Repellent & Insect Candles
Water Purification Pitcher and Filters
Clothes Line & Clips
Detergent – Liquid or Dry
A Collapsible Drying Rack
Fire Extinguisher or Blanket
Water Bottle or Canteen
Small Sewing Kit
Pocket Knife with Multi-tools
Condiments & Other Edible Extras:
Spices, Sugar or Sweetener, Salt and Pepper
Some Canned Goods For Snacking Such As Nuts or Trail Mixes
Bottled Water or Canned Soft Drinks (unless you are near a small store where you can pickup easily)
These lists will make it so much easier for you to form your own list. Make sure you adapt this comprehensive list to your needs. You would be amazed how many of these items could go overlooked and only be remembered when it’s too late.
Read through and make sure you will have everything possible to ensure you have a safe and happy camping trip. Feel free to drop me a line if you feel like I missed something on that list!
Outdoor enthusiast and rafting addict.
From Cleveland Ohio born and raised (GO CAVS).
Working for a professional kayaking company located in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park Ohio.
I am a huge NBA fan and spend the rest of my spare time djing as a hobby.