Gear Tips for Camping (Car, Truck, RV's)...

Posted by Chad Sander on

Tips for Camping in Cars, Trucks, RV’s…

Hello fellow outdoor enthusiasts.  For the seasoned camper these tips may be obvious. But it's always good to go over your gear list before heading out.  We hope you will find these tips and suggestions helpful. 

It’s time to get outside, go camping, go fishing, and just go outside.  Unplug, decompress, turn off the television and video games and go explore. 

Oh yeah, did you forget any essentials?

Here’s a list of things you’ll want to remember to take with you…

Safety First

Cuts, scrapes, bumps, bugs bites, or even burns can happen when camping.  We don’t like to think about some of these things but remember to bring mosquito repellent and some basic provisions like a first aid kit, bandages, and disinfectants.  Don’t forget the biodegradable camp soap, towels or paper towels, trash bags, and hand sanitizers.  If you’re planning to be in the sun much bring sunscreen.  Sunscreen sprays are great for getting the back of your arms, neck, and legs.


Remember to bring some water.  There are many great containers for camping.  Bottled water is okay but it’s much more affordable and sustainable to use refillable water containers.  A water filter straw is always great too in case you need to filter water or for emergencies.  I’ve always gone by the rule that each person needs at least a gallon of water per day when camping or hiking.  Bring extra if you need to shower.  There are many camp showers available or just make your own with an old soda bottle or milk jug and punch some holes in the lid.

Fire Starters (Lighter, Matches, Fire Strikers)

Keep extra lighters in your camp gear or back pack.  Remember to bring lighters, matches in a waterproof container, or fire strikers like those often seen in survival bracelets.  Even many summer nights can get chilly and no fire is a bummer when you want to cook or stay warm.

Camp Stove and Cooking

Plan ahead for cooking.  If you plan to cook on the fire you may want to include a portable fire grate.  A camp stove is great.  Hot dog cooking sticks are great to bring for cooking those doggies or roasting marshmallows.  Depending on your stove set up, remember extra fuel or charcoal.  If you are heading to an area that will have no fire wood available (like heavily trafficked camp sites) you will want to take some wood with you.  We always throw fire wood in the back of the truck or trunk.  If you don’t use it just save it for next time.

Para Cords or Rope

Create a shelter, hang things in a tree off the ground and away from raccoons or other critters.  Make a clothes line, make a shelter or emergency tent, climb from small ravines, tie gear to a backpack.  It’s always good to have some cordage handy when camping.  Auto ties also work great with tarps for temporary shelters.


Often wind or rain comes with the outdoors.  These days most of us know the weather but even so the forecast often changes.  Remember to pack a tarp or two in case you need to build a shelter from rain or build a wind block.  This is where cordage comes in handy too.

Tents and Sleeping Gear

For those who want to tent camp make sure your tent is weather proofed.  Many quality tent come already water sealed.  Some tents require that you seal the seams with seam sealer prior to use in rain.  A leaky tent is a bummer so be sure yours is ready for rain and sealed prior to your trip.  Bring sleeping bags, pillows, a self-inflating camp mat or air mat and pump, or cots work great to get up off the ground especially in colder weather.  Don’t forget the tent stakes and a mallet or hammer for harder ground.  If beach camping, rocks for bricks the inside corners are great to keep you tent standing without tent stakes.

Snacks that Last

In addition to the normal grocery list we typically try to include things like dried beef jerky, pasticcios, sunflower seeds, or for low carb snack options dried seaweed or kale are great options.  Bring things to snack on that can also last for a while in case you regular food supply is low or there’s no grocery store close by.  Peanut butter or dried fruit are also great backups. Oh yeah… S’mores anyone?

Don’t forget the seasonings like spices, sugar or sweeteners, salt and pepper, and fish fry if you’re planning on catching some fish.  Many spices can be stored in your camp gear ready to go each time you head out.

Headlamps, Flashlights, Lanterns

Headlamps are great for camping, hiking, heading to the bathroom in the dark, and hands free cooking.  Fuel powered lanterns are a great option and today’s new LED lanterns and flashlights are long lasting and super bright.  There are some great solar powered lanterns available which will save some dough on batteries using the free energy from the sun.

Maps and Compass

Many of us have gotten used to GPS on our phones and devices.  But it’s always great to have a physical map handy in case technology fails.  You never know when signal might be weak or the batteries run down when you weren’t expecting it.  Many camp areas and parks will offer free maps too.  These local maps can often include attractions that over the counter maps may not show.  Be prepared with a compass too.  It’s easy to get turned around in the wilderness or in unfamiliar areas.

Plan for the Weather

The weather forecasters these days are pretty good let’s say they get it right at least 50% of the time, right?  Be prepared.  Weather often changes quickly and no matter how much we plan it’s a bummer to get caught in rain or cold without proper rain gear or coats.  A camp shirt or long sleeve shirts are great for night to keep the cold away and help keep the mosquitos at bay.

Camp Chairs

Remember to bring something to sit on.  A log is ok but a nice camp chair is much easier on the back side.  We like the chairs that have drink holders in the arm rests.  This is great for chilling by the camp fire or fishing.

A Good Knife, Hatchet or Camp Saw

There are many great options for cutting.  A multipurpose knife is great to keep in any camp bag.   Swiss army style knives are great with options like a spoon/fork, scissors, cork screw, and cutting edge.  Don’t forget the camp saw or a small hatchet to make cutting fire wood much easier.

There are the essentials of coarse for those who are tent camping, RV camping, or car camping.  Backpacking and hiking of coarse will be a little different but many of these items still apply.  Most importantly, just get outside and enjoy the great outdoors.  If you have not been out for a while you may realize you forgot something.  Just make a mental note or jot it down and remember to include these items every time you go.