This is part of a summer campaign with REI; I was compensated for this post however, all opinions expressed are my own.
Are you heading on your first camping trip? If you are going to a campground where you can drive up to your campsite, then I recommend you pack the following items to make this a trip you won’t forget!
1. Clothes- Yes we all need clothes while hanging out in the great outdoors but there are some items you can wear a couple of times for your weekend camping trip. My recommendation is to pack the following:
One pair of jeans- most likely the ones you wear on your way to your campsite
Plenty of underwear and socks- most camp grounds have a communal bathroom where you can shower and change clothes, which trust me, after a long hike, you are going to want to shower
PJ’s - I always prefer to be over dressed than under, especially when it comes to sleeping outside! That is why I recommend to pack long pair of sweatpants and a long sleeve shirt. Even on a hot day in the summer, campsites tend to cool off a lot at night.
Jacket or sweater- You’d be surprised how cool it can get at night, so make sure you bring a sweater or a jacket that can keep you comfortable while you enjoy those smores!
Shorts and t-shirts- During a trip I took to Olympic National Park last year, I headed to REI and purchased some awesome Columbia gear that had coolwick technology which helped keep my body cool during those long hikes. I highly recommend to pack a couple of items that have this technology.
Hiking shoes/boots- You definitely need a pair of shoes that can with stand all kinds of terrain while give you the support and comfort you need for those long days full of activities.
Towel & Flip Flops- These two items are a must, especially if you are going to a campground that has a communal bathroom. You want to make sure you protect your feet!
2. Toiletries- Ladies, leave your blow dryers at home! That is the beauty about camping, you don’t need any of those items just pack your basic necessities such as:
Shampoo/Conditioner - it’s not a huge necessity if you are doing a weekend trip however if you are out longer you might want to wash your hair!
Sunscreen- body and face
3. Food- I’m a foodie and I love to cook so I made sure during my last camping trip to purchase certain meats ahead of time so I can season them and put them in the cooler with ice for the weekend. However, if you like to keep it easy and simple, just pack some patties, hot dogs, bread, seasoning, and you are all set! Don’t forget to pack some water, juice, chips, and all the ingredients needed to make smores! Trust me when I say, purchase the dark chocolate bars for your smores, it will change your life!
4. Cooler, Ice and Grill- Yup! Make sure you pack all three of those items it will make your camping experience much more enjoyable.
5. Plates and Napkins- Ok so you might not need the napkins but you can purchase a cloth that you can wash and reuse after every meal. For the plates, I recommend buying plastic plates that you can reuse over and over again and wash it off with a little bit of water and soap! Oh yeah, don’t forget soap to wash your dishes!
6. Tent, Inflatable Bed, and Sleeping Bag- If you don’t own any of these items, I recommend you swing by REI. The folks at my local REI store were super helpful when I was picking out a tent for our camping trip. They asked me all the questions that helped me figure out that I needed a four person tent. A tent that large allowed us to have a queen size inflatable bed (this piece is optional, we have some back problems so this helped us sleep a bit more comfortably) and had enough room for us to put our shoes inside the tent while we were sleeping. Don’t forget your sleeping bag, this is what will keep you warm at night along with your comfy PJ’s and pillow.