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Great Expectations: Planning Your Camping Trip

There is a lot of preparation required to make a camping trip work. You need to make sure that you have all of the right equipment. You need to make sure that you know how to use said equipment, and you need to make sure that you can get to your spot. We all know that no matter how elaborate our plans and how we prepare, there will always be things that interfere with those plans and we will almost always end up improvising for a good part of the trip. Nevertheless, planning a trip and enjoying it can still be a possibility.


The Reservation

The first thing that needs to be done is reserving a spot. This means that you need to figure out where you are going and how long you plan to stay there. You need to figure out if you will be stopping at multiple locations, or just one, and how long you plan on staying there. It may take doing some research and looking at a map, but once you have made the decisions, you need to make the reservations. Fortunately, most campground owners today use some form of campground reservation software, making it easier than ever to make sure you get your spot.

However, keep in mind that you will need to reserve your spot well in advance; six months ahead of time is ideal. You should have a good idea of what kind of spot you are looking for, how close it needs to be to various amenities, and what your needs are when it comes to the trip itself. As such, it should be relatively easy to find the spot that you are looking for. While there are plenty of tips for making a reservation online, the basic gist is that you just need to know what you want, reserve the spot ahead of time, and make any preparations necessary for the spot.


Materials To Bring

You are going to have to come up with three lists: what you need, what you want, and what you would like. The “need” list should include food, medicines and other materials you need to maintain physical health as well as the clothes you will need for the trip; these are the items you need to seriously plan to include due to potential health. This list should also include something for sunburn and insect bites as well as some sort of first aid kit. The “like” list should include items that you think will make the situation more fun, such as swimwear, bikes, rafts, games, balls, etc. These are items that you are planning to prepare at the campsite as well as snacks and drinks for the trip there.

The “want” list is the fun one. You need to decide exactly what materials you will need to survive in the wild and make sure that you have them on hand. This can include tents, cooking equipment, and all of the sundry camping equipment you will need. You also need to make sure that the equipment works and that you know how to use all of it. This means that you should take a weekend and inspect everything, possibly setting them up, and then actually using them in order to make sure that they work. If you do not how something works, now is the time to learn. You do not want surprises in the wild and that includes making sure your skill is up to the task.


Getting There

All you need to do is plan for the road trip. Keep in mind that you will need snacks, drinks, and someone to share the perfect road trip with you. Make sure that you have planned out the route to and from, look for rest stops along the way, and then make sure that you have enough money and fuel for the road. The rest will usually take care of itself.

The biggest thing to remember is that your plans are likely to fall apart and that is part of the fun. There is no way to plan for everything and it is usually pointless to even try, but remember that and you will enjoy the trip. Camping is a great way to return to nature; part of that is the elemental chaos. Bear that in mind and the trip will be one for the record books.

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