Ahhhh camping. I have such fond memories of heading to the great outdoors with my family every summer, hiking and swimming all day, then roasting marshmallows over an open fire at night, getting all comfy in a down sleeping bag and drifting off to dreamland under a blanket of stars. Camping is the quintessential outdoor summer activity, and it’s an adventure every family needs to experience. However, if you’re new to the idea of camping, it may be a bit overwhealming trying to figure out what equipment you need to ensure an enjoyable camping trip. So, to make sure you’re starting the season off on the right foot (and in the right tent) I’m here to give you a rundown of the most popular gear for camping this summer. Read on, and gear up!
Under the Dome
The first thing you’ll need for your summer camping trip is a tent, of course. You’ll want something that can stand up to Canadian weather, because even our awesome summers have rainy days and nights. You also want something with enough room for the whole family to snuggle up and snooze the night away. The World Famous Orion 4-Person Square Dome Tent is an ideal and comfortable home base for your camping trip this year. The square dome tent features a 5.91 sq. m floor plan, sleeps four people comfortably and it’s quick and easy to set up. The Orion can also withstand the worst of Mother Nature, too, with a waterproof floor that extends several inches up the walls, and nylon construction to allow air to circulate.
On Top of the Air
Nobody wants to sleep on the cold, hard ground, so you’ll also want a really good inflatable mattress for inside your tent. Some people like sleeping bags, while others prefer to bring a pillow and blanket from home, but no matter how you sleep, it has to be comfortable. The Rockwater Airlift 72″ x 20″ Air Mattress offers a comfortable night’s sleep with a non-slip fabric sleeping surface and open cell foam that is luxuriously comfortable. It’s easy to inflate, comes with a handy mesh/nylon carrying case, and also a coupling kit that allows you to attach two mattresses.
Best Seat in the House
Not only do you want to avoid sleeping on the cold, hard ground, but you probably don’t want to spend the whole camping trip sitting on the ground either. So, you’ll also need a nice camping chair upon which to park your butt in front of the fire after a long day enjoying the outdoors. The North 49 Directors Chair Side Table is the ideal camping chair, featuring lightweight construction, a cool foldable design, plus padded seat and armrests. It also features a rigid foldaway side table with cup holder so you don’t have to attempt the messy task of trying to eat with a paper plate in your lap every meal.
A Light in the Dark
Have you ever been out in the woods? It gets pretty dark out there among the trees and wild animals. So, another essential piece of camping kit is a solid and dependable light source to help you get around the campsite at night, and find your way to the loo when you inevitably have to go at 2 a.m. The North 49 LED Dynamo Lantern is my choice for camping lights, featuring a built-in compass and three levels of brightness. Best of all, the lantern doesn’t need batteries, but rather runs on a crank so you’re never without a light when you need it.
Unless you plan on cooking over an open camp fire for the entire camping trip, you’re going to need a decent camping stove. I don’t recommend using a camp fire all the time, as it is hard to evenly cook stuff, or control much of the process. However, with the World Famous 2-Burner Propane Camping Stove, you’ve got a lightweight and portable two-burner stove with two propane cylinders that hold frying pans over 8″ in size. It also features an easy-clean drip pan that keeps all the grease contained.
Under a Blanket of Stars
One of the great things about camping out is that you’re usually out in the backcountry or in a more remote area, far away from most light pollution. Out there the stars are much brighter, and the night sky is so much more dazzling to behold. So, although it’s not an essential bit of gear, the Celestron PowerSeeker 80AZS 80 x 40mm Telescope is certainly something I’d consider taking on any camping trip, just to take advantage of that big, beautiful and unspoilt night sky. It features great high-magnification with a 400mm focal length, and the f/5 focal ratio offers a wide field of view, plus the telescope has great light gather capabilities with its 80mm aperture, so you can see all the stars bright and clear.
Here Fishy, Fishy-Fish!
Again, not an essential piece of camping kit, however to me, fishing has always gone hand-in-hand with my own backcountry excursions, so I’d totally bring along the Reel Sonar iBobber Bluetooth Castable Fish Finder, so I’m not coming back to the camp site empty handed. This thing uses sophisticated sonar to detect fish at a depth of up to 135 feet, and it even lets you know if the fish are under or over 15 inches, so you know if you’re in a worthwhile fishing spot. It also offers fish and strike alarms, has a calendar and weather feature, plus it synchs with your iPhone via Bluetooth.
So, what do you think? Would these choices for most popular gear for camping this summer kit you out properly for a camping trip with your family? Have I missed any essential gear? Let me know about your own favourite camping gear, and where you’ll be camping this summer, in the comment section. Have a safe and happy trip!