9 Camping Essentials for Families

9 Camping Essentials for Families

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9 Camping Essentials for Families


9 Camping Essentials for Families
Family camping.

Preparation is the key to having a memorable camping experience, whether you are just pitching a tent out back or taking off for a trek through the Rockies.  We want you to be ready to hunker down together among the trees and enjoy life in the wilds for a few days.  We put together these 9 camping essentials for families so you can check out of the tech supported city life.  Check out the advice below to be inspired; decide how best to prepare for your next camping expedition.  We believe you will be grateful for the information you found here.


Cleaning Kit


You need to maintain your cleanliness while camping.  Good hygiene is difficult when you are camping sometimes, but you can keep yourself clean.  A tub of baby wipes, a collection of hand towels and a spray bottle of gentle soap and water mix will keep everyone feeling and smelling good.  This is not a sponsored spot but I recommend Dr. Bronner’s products for the camper kit.  Of course, we want clean hands before eating and bedtime for our little ones and big ones alike.  A mild biodegradable soap and a sponge can be used to take mini-baths when water resources are low.  Have one small tub of products for people cleaning and another for tables, dishes and other gear.


Lunch Kit


Some go glamping, others are happy to boondock or tent.  It makes no difference if you don’t have food you can carry, and want to eat.  Two things for the lunch kit.  A meal plan and a packing plan.  Mix and match non-perishable items with items one can keep frozen or cold with ice in the cooler.  Canned or fresh veg are easy to store and eat raw.  Many like bringing the ready to eat meals in a bag but these don’t always suit the tastes of the children in our flock.  There will always the popular bagged snacks and bubbly drinks.  Planning and preparation are key here.  Don’t forget to bring water..


Camping Kitchen Top 11 Tips


  1. Pancake Mix – Just add milk (could be shelf stable) or water.
  2. Beef Jerky.
  3. Bacon Bits.
  4. Scrambled eggs in a bottle – include your favorite chopped up add-ons.
  5. Bring the bread for tinfoil campfire French Toast, grilled cheese (or both).
  6. PB & J’s.
  7. Campfire nachos kill it with the skillet.
  8. Campfire waffle cones for dessert.
  9. Plastic straws are great for holding seasoning mixes.  Seal the ends with a lighter and use only what you need and then re-seal.
  10. Make your quesadillas at home before you head out and add in some fireside Taco Tatter-tots.
  11. Campfire Taco in a bag is easy to make.  The hamburger cooks well over the campfire; season it with Taco seasoning, spread it over crushed taco chips and top with desired ingredients for a meal the kids and adults are sure to love.


Or just bring the Instant Pot and Pinterest.  I am now ready to eat after all that!


Fire Kit

9 Camping Essentials for Families
Fire kit.


While camping seems synonymous with a campfire, that campfire doesn’t necessarily have to be made from wood.  In fact, it might be safer and easier to use a portable campfire unit powered by propane.  For the most part, these units are permitted unless there is a fire ban in place.  Back to the food – marshmallows taste just as good from these units as they do over an open, wood-burning fire, too.  Don’t forget to bring water.


Campsite Reservations


Reserve your spot at a campground as soon as possible.  The online reservations seem to fill up extremely fast so planning ahead is key for booking at the site and location you want.  If you make your reservation as soon as the reservations are available online you are much more likely to get the best spots.  Camping really is location, location, location.


Family Friendly


If you are traveling with children, consider staying at a campground that is specifically designated for families.  Campers in these areas know what to expect and will not have an issue if you have a active toddler or your children want to run around, scream and play.  You will probably be more relaxed as a result and have a better time.  Many people like to camp with their friends so the children can play together.  Teach your kids the basics of camping safety and fire safety.  Sometimes, if children are new to camping the initial sleep in the camper or tent can be a little scary.  A test run at home or with the aunts and uncles can help the littles become accustomed to the wilderness nights.


Be a Good Neighbour


If you are camping without a group of friends make sure to introduce yourselves to other families camping in your immediate area.  It’s a good way to meet others but also a great way to break the ice.  If another crew arrives after you’ve set up, offer to help with their tent or equipment.  If something goes awry during the trip for anyone, it’s much easier to ask for help from somebody who was courteous enough to introduce themselves.



9 Camping Essentials for Families
Camping with pets.


If you are going camping with your pets well who wouldn’t, am I right!?  Remember to take a a few extra precautions.  Naturally, the dogs have their blankets and toys and a plastic tote is so easy to keep their gear contained.  You need to know what to do if they get lost and should have a small survival kit.  Make sure you have leashes for any pets and make sure they are current with all vaccinations.




Bugs and mosquitoes are a common camping annoyance.  You could buy a commercial repellent with chemicals, but a good natural way to keep bugs away from your body is by using a lemon or an orange peel.  Rub the inside of the peel on your arms and legs.  This is an inexpensive and easy way to repel annoying pests – could possibly work on your daughter’s boyfriend as well.  I mean Brody is nice and all but he talks so much.

Several studies have shown that dryer sheets, especially the Bounce variety, are effective at repelling pests, including mosquitoes. Dryer sheets contain beta-citronellol, the same chemical found in citronella candles.  Some people attest to putting a dryer sheet in their pocket to  prevent mosquitoes from biting.


Essentials Kit


Though camping may be about roughing it in the wilderness, being prepared is a necessity.  A sleeping bag is a must, and extra blankets should also be considered.  This helps to make sure that you are comfortable at night when it is chilly.


Do not underestimate the power of duct tape It is an essential tool when you camp.  This where your box of “essentials” comes in.  Duct tape can be used to repair tent poles, patch shoes, fix holes in mosquito netting, as well as many other things.  Duct tape is a life saver, as is water – don’t forget that.


The Top 10 Essential Helpers


  1. Tarp
  2. Tape
  3. First aid kit
  4. Rope and bungy cords
  5. Candles
  6. Lighter and water proof matches
  7. Bug Spray
  8. Hats
  9. Flashlight
  10. Games and colouring books for the rainy days.


Check out this printable camping checklist from KOA

Make a list of what to bring on your camping trip ahead of time.  Planning ahead will save you the hassles of last-minute shopping. It will also ensure that you don’t forget any essentials.  You don’t want to arrive at your campsite to discover you’ve forgotten your cookware, knives or soap.



9 Camping Essentials for Families
Camping Equipment.


A good multi-purpose tool needs to be part of your camping gear.  There are two kinds to bring.  First is the saw/hammer/axe 3-in-1 tool to use for firewood and other chores.  The other is the standard multi-purpose tool with a variety of tools on it like a can opener, tweezers, scissors, and a knife.


An indispensable item to pack for your camping trip is Ziploc bags.  You can separate items in your gear like sunscreen and bug spray so if they puncture they do not get all over your gear.  You can also use them to keep items like matches and cellphones dry if it rains.


Many people fail to plan properly in order to ensure that they get a good night’s sleep when camping.  The temperature difference between the ground and your body can be quite different, even if the weather is warm.  Make sure you bring the proper sleeping gear to make your evening comfortable for you.


As you have seen, camping is an activity enjoyed by many people – the 5AM Crew included.  Take what you have gained here with our 9 camping essentials for families and have a great time.  Planning and preparation along with lists will keep everyone busy before the trip and it will ensure the camping trip will be one everyone can enjoy.  This summer, may you explore and have a great time in the outdoors.


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