Camping Gear — If you forget these you’ll still be okay—but they sure are nice to have.
1. Pillow – I know, it’s too civilized. Well, it’s great for the ride there so your navigator can catch a few winks and if you’re car camping, you’ll at least sleep a little better and consequently have a little better trip.
2. Table Lantern – Same as above, if you’re car camping a table lantern can be very handy. I usually arrive at dusk and it’s nice to have a lot of light when preparing food and camp.
3. Camera – Depending on the environment you visit, be careful which camera you bring. Cameras don’t like a lot of the fun things that the outdoors has to offer like rain, the river, falling on rocks, etc. For most trips your new itty-bitty digital will be fine. If you’re going into the backcountry, you’ll want to buy a cheap disposable just for the trip.
4. Extra Batteries – Okay, confession time. I have never, ever through almost a hundred camping trips now, ever run out of batteries. At first, as a scrawny, anxious boy scout who was always prepared, I would take a lot of stuff that I might need like batteries and end up never using them.
Instead, I just like to put fresh batteries in the things I’ll be using and it hasn’t been a problem. If you’ll be up half the night spotting baracuda and your lights use a lot of juice then maybe.
5. Money – Hide a $20 or $50 bill somewhere in you car or pack (don’t worry, money is fairly waterproof – and dryer proof too) in case you lose your wallet and you need a little more gas, or to make a phone call or pay an entry fee. A lot of park rangers still can’t accept Visa.
6. Reading Material – This also smacks of hoity-toity civility, but camping does have it’s lulls and may offer you a few hours to catch up on Harry Potter, but I’d prefer it if you left the work and homework at home. You’re not going to get to it even if you do have a lull.
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