Family Camping: Tips and Gear Guide

Camping is a great way to spend quality time outdoors. When done right, camping can result in wonderful memories that last a lifetime. For those head out camping without the right gear and adequate preparation, those memories may still last a lifetime—though they might not be the kind you’d like to remember.

This article provides an introduction to family camping with some proven tips for making it a good experience. These tips are accompanied by gear recommendations and a framework from which to approach the activity.

The Camper's Bucket List

Aristotle said, "In all things of nature there is something of the marvelous." And no other experience offers a closer view of the marvels of nature than camping.

Sure, you can always commune with nature at your favorite local spots, but what of those extraordinary locales out there in the wild? Finding the most exhilarating camping excursions is equal parts activity and destination. If you want the most transcendent of camping trips, here is a list of ideas that every nature enthusiast should try:


How To Start A Campfire

Who does not love sitting by a roaring campfire under a starry sky? Whether it is for a weekend family adventure or a solo camping trip, every camping enthusiast should know these fire-making basics before heading into the woods.

Gather Your Tinder, Kindling and Fuel Wood
A lot more goes into starting a fire than throwing some sticks together and lighting a match. If you want a good fire, start by collecting tinder, kindling and fuel wood.

How to Pack For A Canoe Camping Trip

Packing a canoe for a family camping trip is a bit like packing a duffel bag - a 16- to 17-foot-long duffel bag without any dividers, compartments or pockets.


It can be a mess if you do not have a plan. And in the worst conditions, a poorly packed canoe can be an unwieldy, dangerous craft.


Campground Etiquette

With camping, as with so many other activities in life, unspoken rules of etiquette apply, especially when you’re sharing the great outdoors with others in a developed campground.

The bottom line of campground etiquette: consideration of others at all times. Keep that in mind, and both you and those around you will have an enhanced experience.

A few tips:

Chop Wood Without An Ax

When my family rolls into camp, we divvy up the duties: After the tents are up, half of us start hauling in the sleeping bags and pads, while the other half totes camp chairs and sets up the kitchen.

Then we all go on a firewood-gathering assault.

We’ve learned the dark, cold way that the answer to the question, “How much firewood do we need?” is nearly always, “More.”

Whether you plan to cook over coals or just keep the kids entertained until bedtime, keeping the flames leaping consumes more wood than you might think.

Camping With Dogs

Camping is the perfect activity to enjoy with your dog. Whether you are fishing, hiking or just hanging out roasting hot dogs on the campfire, your dog will not mind roughing it with you. But remember: If you do take your dog camping with you, it is your responsibility to keep them safe, healthy and happy.

Keep these important tips in mind before you go.

Astronomy Basics

A spectacular night under the cover of darkness can be inspiring.

Get away for the lights of town and look to the sky. You’ll be amazed at what you can see with the naked eye. Use binoculars to open up a whole new world for you to see.

The Moon
The Earth’s moon is often the star of the nighttime show.

After the sun, the moon is the brightest object in our sky. This is because of the moon’s proximity to Earth, a mere 238,855 miles away on average.