This is the final post in the 10 Cheap Adventures That Anyone Can Have series.
I’ve written about an easy way to go camping more often, about making your own gear, a piece of my favorite gear, and even shown you some places I’ve camped. I love camping, and always have!
What You Need
As with so many other adventures, you don’t really need much to go camping. It’s easy to spend a lot of money on camping gear, especially when you’re first starting out. Instead, begin with the basics, most of which you can scrounge from home. Then, with more experience, you will be able to buy just the gear you need.
A destination – This can be your backyard, a nearby forest, or a national park. I’ve camped on islands in lakes, on beaches, in my backyard, on a mountain, in my car, and in numerous forests. You can always find somewhere to go camping when you start looking for them.
Some sort of shelter – Shelter can be as grand as a multi-person mansion of a tent, or a simple bedroll. I prefer using my hammock with a bugnet when camping, but still have a tent for backup. If you’re just starting out, you don’t need much. A tarp to keep rain off, and some sheets and blanket from home will keep you warm. They wash out afterwards, and can save you quite a bit of money.
Food – I love having a campfire to cook over, but it can be hard to find a spot where you’re allowed to build one. I’m also a stove junkie (see the above link about making your own gear). Even with both of those facts, though, you don’t need fire to eat well when camping. There is plenty of food that is easy to carry and tasty without having to heat it. Don’t go buy fancy “camping food” when you’re starting out. You can carry something that you eat at home, and then develop your outdoor cooking skills as you go along and acquire or make the gear.
Water – As always, water is vital. It’s easy to buy a 1-gallon jug at the store and carry that. Don’t throw it away, though! Save it for your next trip, and just refill it at home. If you’re car-camping, you can carry a cooler full of drinks.
That’s it, those are the basic requirements for a camping trip. Add in some bug repellent and sun screen and you’re good to go. With such a short list of necessities, and all of them being readily available at home, don’t let any excuses keep you from enjoying a camping trip now!