Off camping and wondering what some up to date camping safety tips are? There is a lot of preparation that goes into a camping trip. It is easy for the safety side to be relegated to the back of your mind in 2021.
That negates the fact that it is one of the most important things. It could be the difference between a good and a tragic camping trip.
A typical example of this is Lake Mead National Recreation Area, where 271 lives were lost between 2006 and 2016, per USNews. While not all areas will pose the same level of risk, preparation is vital. This post will help you prepare for a safe, wondrous camping trip.
1. Have the right equipment
I once arrived at a campsite only to realize that I had my tent but hadn’t put the tent poles back in the bag when preparing. Fortunately, the weather and camp were kind. You can seldom afford to make such an error.
Make a list of all the gear that you would require to make this camping trip a success. You mustn’t do this last minute or in one sitting.
Allow yourself a few days to think it through and add to the list. Using a checklist will save you the trouble of forgetting something. Where there are several moving parts (such as the tent), list them individually.
Use the list to tick things off as you place them into your vehicle before leaving. If you have to remove something for whatever reason, amend the list to reflect that until you replace it.
2. Select the right site
The importance of your site may seem like an obvious one. It isn’t. You want to select a location that is safe for camping. Consider how your shelter will fit in. For tents, you want to look at the drainage of the area. Where possible, consider accessibility. How practical is it for you to get your gear to and from this site?
3. Know your surroundings (animals, directions, plants)
Part of any good camper’s preparation is getting acquainted with their surroundings. You can start by researching the area if you are not familiar with it.
You want to be aware of any wildlife that lives in the area. It may deem the location unsafe for camping or help you know what you would need to do to ensure your safety while camping.
The plants in the area can also pose a danger. Being aware of flora and fauna is essential. Finally, on arrival, it may be worth wandering around the area. Familiarity enhances your safety. It makes you aware of any potential danger and how you can avoid it. That is not something you want to find out after dark.
4. Set camp in time
Arriving at the chosen site with daylight to spare is ideal. You want to have your shelter set up before it gets dark. That allows for some margin for error. If things were to go wrong, you would have the opportunity to rectify them before the darkness becomes a limitation.
5. Protect Yourself
What makes you feel safe? You are the one that is going camping. If you are on any medication, take it with you. That includes anything that you may need in case of an emergency, such as an EpiPen. Avoid the temptation of thinking you will not need it.
You’d rather have it and not need it than need it and not have it.Common sense
There is a reason why 70% of the human body is composed of water. We need it to survive. Staying hydrated is essential when camping. Take some water with you. It is especially important when going off the grid.
You can also consider carrying filtering gear to use if you run out of clean water and have no alternative source. Where possible, avoid drinking water from sources with a purity that you are not sure about. Boil it if you have to.
7. First Aid Kit (List)
We have already mentioned the importance of caring for yourself—the one thing you must always have when camping is a first aid kit. Fingers crossed, you will never require it.
Chances are you may need to patch up a cut or something like that. Having access to such a kit deals with issues immediately and stops them from becoming more significant.
Make sure that your first aid kit includes an emergency torch. You could also craft one by yourself. Here’s a list of 5 tutorials on how to make a torch.
8. Food Packing and Storage
You need to eat! You should store your food in a secure place. The first thing to be mindful of is contamination. You want to have food that is not perishable.
If you are going to be cooking, consider carrying sealed packages such as canned food. It is good practice also to have an emergency stash of snacks. These should be high protein, fat and sugar items. Snack bars are a good example. Take something that will sustain you at desperate times.
Continue Reading: What Food to Take on a Camping Trip?
9. Insect Protection
There are hardly any campsites without insects. I took a hard lesson from the midges when visiting Scotland. Use the time of getting to know your surrounding before heading out as a time to find out what insects to expect. Once you know, bring an adequate repellent to deal with them.
10. Be Weather Ready
All of your preparation can go down the drain if you ignore this part. The weather tends to lay the best-laid plans to waste. Having a supply of water is sufficient for dealing with heat.
The two elements that you cannot afford to let catch you ill-prepared are rain and cold. Make sure you pack several warm clothes. Again, it is better to have these and not need them.
For the cold, you will need several pairs of socks. Pack these in a package that is sealed to avoid getting them wet. It will also help if you are caught in the rain. Have some waterproof boots with you. The ones that are insulated would be ideal as they can deal with both rain and cold weather.
It is easy to stay warm when you are on the move. Sleeping is where it becomes more difficult. Make sure you check that your sleeping bag is adequate for low temperatures. Finally, check that your tent is intact. There should be no holes in it. If you find any, repair them or replace the tent.
As the famous saying goes, “Failing to prepare is preparing to fail.” These 10 camping safety tips should see to a wonderful camping experience. The last thing that we must mention is to care for the environment. Always leave the campsite the way that you found it if not better. Clean up after yourself, especially if wild camping.
The current Covid-19 climate adds a new dimension to this. Carry your mask with you when you head out. You may not need it if there are no people around, but having it helps.
Maintain a good standard of hygiene as well. Do not mingle with strangers if you don’t have to. You don’t want to contract the coronavirus while camping. It should be a leisurely pursuit.