Camping 101

Getting outdoors and experiencing nature can be an immensely rewarding experience. Spending a few days away from the daily grind will help refill your soul. Trying to figure out what you need for a camping trip can be a bit daunting. Some people buy way to much stuff, others don’t buy enough. We are here to help! In this post we are going to dive into the gear you need to plan an awesome camping trip. Whether you are heading out on your own or packing up the family we have the gear you need! Get you gear and Get Up, Get Out, and Create an Adventure!

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A place to sleep

If you are going to head out on a camping trip you will need a place to sleep. You might rent an RV, or stay a cabin however, for this article we are going to take a look at good old fashioned tent camping. So let’s get to it. 

When you go to purchase a tent make sure to get one that provides enough room for you, anyone else joining you, and all of your bedding and gear. For example when you purchase a 4 person tent this is often what you will get:

Room for 4 people to sleep. Not a lot of room for gear.

With this knowledge I recommend buying your sleeping bags, bedding, and any other gear to get the best idea of how much space you will need. 

1-3 People

These tents are ideal for a single camper, couple, small family, or you and a friend (or two). They provide adequate room for sleeping and storage of your gear. 

  • Easy assembly free-standing two-pole design with shock corded fiberglass poles
  • Polyester fly resists water and UV damage, while providing an awning over each door
  • Fully equipped with storage pockets, gear loft, stakes, guy ropes and two zippered window doorways
  • Base Size: 5′ x 7’6, Center Height: 48″, Total Weight: 7 lbs. 9 oz
  • Polyester
  • Lightweight camping tent designed for backpacking
  • 8- by 7-foot interior with covered vestibule fits up to 3 camp pads
  • Fast 10-minute setup with snag-free continuous pole sleeves
  • WeatherTec system and full rainfly keep interior dry and comfortable
  • Full mesh interior for better airflow

2-4 People

These tents are great for a small family or a couple with a larger amount of gear, or bedding. 

  • 150D/150D Polyester/taped seams
  • Instant tent sets up in just 1 minute
  • WeatherTec system with patented welded floors and inverted seams to keep you dry
  • Rugged Polyguard 2X double-thick fabric for reliable, long-lasting use
  • Integrated vented rainfly improves airflow without any extra assembly needed
  • Measures 8 x 7 feet with 4-foot 11-inch center height
  • polyester taffeta 75D
  • Spacious 6-person tent has enough room for 2 queen size air beds
  • Separate screen room offers bug-free lounging
  • WeatherTec system with patented welded floors and inverted seams to keep you dry
  • Measures 10 x 9 feet with 5-foot 8-inch center height; screen room is 10 x 5 feet
  • Sets up in 15 minutes with rainfly and carry bag included

4-6 People

These tents are great for a small family or group of friends. The design of these tents offer more space, standing room, and other features. 

  • 150D/150D Polyester/taped seams
  • Instant tent sets up in just 1 minute. Spacious interior has room for 2 queen airbeds
  • WeatherTec system with patented welded floors and inverted seams to keep you dry
  • Rugged Polyguard 2X double-thick fabric for reliable, long-lasting use. Outer fabric : Taffeta 150D & Polyester Mesh
  • Integrated vented rainfly improves airflow without any extra assembly needed
  • Measures 10 x 9 feet with 6-foot center height
  • Spacious 11 ft. x 9 ft. interior room fits 2 queen-size airbeds; 9 ft. x 6 ft. screen room offers bug-free lounging
  • WeatherTec features include a tub floor with welded corners, protected seams, and covered zippers to keep water out; included rainfly provides extra weather protection
  • Hinged door for easy entry and exit; angled windows keep rain out even in a downpour
  • Easy setup in about 20 minutes thanks to snag-free, continuous pole sleeves, patented slip-proof pin-and-ring system, and Insta-Clip suspension that secures tent to poles in a snap
  • E-Port makes it easy to bring electrical power inside your tent; storage pockets keep small gear organized and off the floor

8-10 Person

Looking for a tent to fit the whole family or a large group? Look no further. These tents will hold you, your crew, and all of your stuff. 

  • Cabin-like 10-person tent has enough room for 3 queen size air beds
  • WeatherTec system with patented welded floors and inverted seams to keep you dry
  • Hinged front door for easy entry and room divider for extra privacy
  • Sets up easily in 20 minutes
  • Measures 17 x 9 feet with 6-foot 8-inch center height
  • Spacious 14 ft. x 10 ft. tent fits 4 queen-size airbeds
  • WeatherTec features include a tub floor with welded corners, protected seams, and covered zippers to keep water out; integrated rainfly provides extra weather protection
  • Instant setup in about 60 seconds thanks to pre-attached poles
  • Storage pockets keep small gear organized and off floor
  • Rugged double-thick fabric stands up to outdoor rigors season after season
  • Room to stretch out with 6 ft. 7 in. center height
  • 1-year limited warranty

Cooking Gear

One of the best things about camping is the food! The things we eat can connect us to memories, and this is amplified when camping! If you grew up camping I am sure you can identify some foods that you love because you ate them while camping. If you have not camped you are just going to have to trust me! My kids don’t really like eating zucchini at home however, as soon as it is cooked outdoors and referred to as Dad’s Camping Zucchini (Patent Pending), the kids eat it up! No matter what you like to eat you are going to need some kitchen essentials. Below is a mix of what we love to use. 

Pro Tip: for spatulas, small utensils, hand towels, etc… check out your local dollar store. If something is broken, lost, or gets gross it is inexpensive to replace!

Cooking

You can cook your entire meal(s) over the fire in your campground if you have the means. However, some campgrounds don’t allow fires, and if they do cooking over the fire can be a challenge for a beginner. I like using both the fire and a gas grill. Using a gas grill is clean, inexpensive, and provides heat immediately. 

I use the Coleman Eventemp 3 Burner gas stove. I like the two burners which I typically use with my copper frying pans (super easy to clean!). This stove also has a nice rectangular burner in the middle which works great with my aluminum griddle. This stove and griddle, in combination with a good old-fashioned fire, eliminates my need for a grill. 

This little guy is awesome. Sometimes you don’t need a full camp stove. For those moments we break this thing out and we are good to go. This is also fun to take on hiking trips, to the beach, or tailgating! 

Don’t forget the kettle! Heat water on your Pocket Rocket while you cook breakfast on your stove. Coffee and hot chocolate are ready the same time as breakfast!

Speaking of coffee…

Storage

As you buy camping gear you will quickly realize there are lots of little things you need. One of the biggest challenges is how, and where, to store everything! We use the RIGID 22″ Pro Tool Box (well actually we use like four of them) and they are great for keeping gear clean and dry. A bonus is these tool boxes stack and lock together. 

I buy these at Home Depot. Click the picture to check them out. 

Everything Else

There are lots of other little things you need when camping. I am going to just link items below that are always in my camping gear. If you have any other questions, or are looking for personal recommendations, leave a comment or use our contact page! Share your go-to camping gear in the comments below! 

That’s not a knife! 

These are great for getting the fire going!

Light up your campsite while keeping those pesky mosquitos away. Real talk: This is my favorite camp accessory. I am a mosquito magnet and this thing creates a bug-free barrier four hours.

This stuff is awesome. I spray our tent once a year and this stuff is great at keeping the water out! It is nice to be in your tent while it is raining confident that you will stay dry!

Chop some firewood, and look good doing it. I love my Estwing axe. Nice leather handle, sharp blade, and made in the USA. 

Don’t forget a place to sit! Some people buy expensive camp chairs, others buy cheap ones. Camp chairs tend to take a beating, at the end of the day I would rather replace a $20 chair than a $100 chair. 

We love these tables from lifetime. They make a great space to se up your cooking items. When you are not camping they can be used around the house.

We will be posting more of our favorite camping gear, but this should be enough to get you started. If you have any questions, or are looking for other recommendations, please let us know! Planning a camping trip near Central California? Get in touch! Maybe we will see you there. 

Get Up, Get Out, and Create an Adventure!


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