A recreational activity which involves a stay away from the homeplace in an open location for more than a day is referred to as “camping”. This particular recreational activity is full of joy, fun, and adventure mainly because of its outdoor nature. Those who follow this recreational activity are known as campers and the location(s) at which outdoor night stay(s) and outdoor activities are carried out is known as a campsite.
Usually, the whole idea of camping involves the campers leaving out the hustle bustle of developed areas in the pursuit of finding adventure, fun, and joy with the help of various enjoyment activities at a place providing a strong connection with nature. These enjoyment activities can be anything that can lead to a happy time and often vary from camper to camper due to various human psychological factors.
Camping is a distinct activity from day tripping and other similar short term recreational activities. In order for a recreational activity to be referred to as a camping, it must fulfill the basic essentials of its definition. These essentials include:
- Outdoor stay for more than a day.
- Stay must be at a campsite or a location which can be termed to as a campsite.
- Participants must undertake some enjoyment activities that can yield fun, adventure, and joy or satisfaction of inner needs specific to this purpose.
The best part of camping is that there is no particular season in which this outdoor recreational activity can be enjoyed. Camping is an all season recreational activity and can be carried out in whatever season deemed fit by a camper. It provides a person a way to get attached to nature and fulfill the inner need of exploration.
Campers can make their experience in camping full of luxury, mid-luxury or no luxury at all. In order to make the camping experience more luxurious and peaceful, various tools and equipment are utilized for facilitating various tasks that may arise. However, not all people find peacefulness and adventure by easing out the tasks. Some people show a tendency to achieve more peace and adventure by performing all tasks by themselves as it makes camping a bit more enjoyable and worthwhile.
Camping is also becoming a necessity in order to induce various skills in a person that helps in facing various difficulties of life. For instance, camping helps in inducing the spirit of teamwork and also helps a person in learning the ability of self-reliance. Both of these skills are necessary for performing tasks of day to day life. In fact, many youth organizations have adopted camping as a core activity in their routines.
Camping can also be combined with various other recreational activities to add over to the initial value being received from camping alone. Usually, people love to add over other recreational activities like hiking, fishing, swimming etc. along with camping. Camping alone is rarely practiced and is often less interesting without the addition of supplemental recreational activities.
ESSENTIAL CAMPING GEAR
It’s quite obvious that you will be needing a lot of things at camping. These include your regular routine things such as clothes, food, medicines etc. and any extra things that you will need for carrying out any other planned recreational activity plus you will need some specialized and basic camping gear.
Apart from the basic items, there is a big need for taking up some required camping gear alongside. These include:
- Tents or sleeping bags
- Tent facilitating items along with some extras such as poles, stakes, tent footprints etc.
- Trap setting items
- Repair kits
- Emergency medical and survival kits
- Cell and satellite phones
- Flashlights (with extra batteries) and lanterns
- Any sort of fuel necessary
- Maps of your campsite(s) and other nearby locations
- Gun or any other sort of ammunition in case of emergencies
- GPS or other location tracking equipment or gear
There are literally infinite items that you can pack and think of for taking along, however, it’s simply not possible to pack everything up. Thus, the main focus should always be given to high priority items. For instance, it’s okay to leave a couple of entertainment items and equipment such as cameras but it’s not okay to leave your clothes or food items or other essential camping items comparatively.
TYPES OF CAMPING
The idea of camping sounds pretty simple still, yet it has been divided into lots of types. Camping is divided into various types on the basis of its aim or purpose. A number of camping purposes have been devised due to varying cultures and behavior of different people.
WILDERNESS CAMPING OR BACKPACKING
Out of all the camping types, wilderness camping is the most popular one. People love to pack up their bags and follow where their heart takes them for a maximum wilderness experience. Wilderness camping campsites include but are not limited to the most popular recreational spots nearby to one’s location as well as some of the most remote areas in the world.
Wilderness campers often use specialized camping gear for facilitating various needs and tasks that may be required to fulfilled on their journey. Technological advancement has played a big role in fulfilling these sort of needs of campers more easily and efficiently.
The basic idea behind adventure camping is to compete in a challenging race for obtaining adventurous experiences on the way. It involves forming different teams comprising of fixed number of members in each team pursuing a common goal. Adventure camping is spread over a number of days and adventure campers usually pursue the race in the daylight and camp up at night. Adventure campers might use basic camping gear such as sleeping bags for fulfilling the daily basic needs. Mountain biking is one popular example of adventure camping.
Glamping follows the basic idea of recreational camping with the element of luxury added to it. It involves the use of every possible luxury item during the period of camping that has been deemed suitable by the campers. In fact, the word glamping is used in short for describing “glamorous camping”. It is becoming a very popular recreational activity all over the globe especially among the upper strata of the society.
Just like a student loves to interact with other students, a doctor loves to interact with other doctors, an engineer loves to interact with other engineers similarly a camper also loves to interact with other fellow campers. Camping done to fulfill this particular need on purpose is termed to as social or socialized camping. Social camping programs are organized by organizations and companies where campers having similar interests from similar geographical backgrounds or locations can participate. In the UK, the Caravan Club is an organization which does this sort of arrangements.
Camping did for the purposes of survival or in order to learn survival skills is referred to as survival or survivalist camping. In today’s world, doing this type of camping is a must in order to tackle unseen contingencies that may arise in the future. A survival camper learns almost each and every outdoor skill that can help him/her to tackle various situations in case he/she gets strangled in a situation that demands the appliance of these skills. Examples of these skills include but are not limited to obtaining food from the wild, starting a fire from natural resources only, natural techniques to treat common injuries etc.
HOW TO CAMP?
There is a common perception about camping being hard among those who have never camped or those who have just been familiarized with this term. However, this is not the case every time. Camping itself is actually quite easy to do as well as learning to camp is genuinely a lot of fun provided you don’t make things hard! Anyways, the basic idea of learning how to camp always comes in handy no matter if you are a regular camper or a newbie to camping.
- Camping is mostly dependent on one big thing which is the campsite! If your campsite is awesome then most certainly your camping experience will also be awesome but if it’s not so good then it’s probably bad luck. A good location (campsite) is either the deal breaker or the deal maker for a camper. Therefore, it is very crucial to do your homework for it. Theoretically, deciding where to camp should be devoted the most time. There are many established campsites to visit in most of the areas all over the globe and a simple Google Search is usually enough to dig the data up. If nothing works in your favor then it’s best to get in touch with regular campers to learn about new locations and probably learn camping tips and tricks from them. Lastly, exploring completely new locations is not a bad idea as well if you have those adventure & fun thirsty friends or family members along with you on the journey.
- Once you have worked upon your location then it’s time to start collecting and packing things up that are essential for your journey. You should carefully plan on things that you need to take with yourself because it is usually a better idea to pack a few things rather than taking up a big load. You are going on an adventure trip, not on a world tour, so pack wisely. It is important to study your camping location thoroughly in order to determine the most suitable stuff for packing up. Moreover, give a higher priority to essential camping gear because it will help you out in more situations than you can imagine.
- Next, comes organizing. Organizing is important when it comes to efficient and a well laid out camping experience. Without proper organizing, things will start getting messed up very easily and it will seriously become a big burden to get things right on the track. On reaching your camping location take a quick view of it. Plan out the place for building your staying location and start setting up your tents and other materials at that very place right away. The earlier and faster you work on this the better it is. Gather up your food and set up a cooking place at your campsite plus work upon starting up a fire at your location.
- Now’s the perfect time to do a full exploration of your campsite as well as work on any other outdoor activities that you may have planned for your camping. In other words, it’s the perfect time to chill with your friends! There are certainly tons of things that you can do on camping, almost anything that comes in your mind. Especially the night time is the best time in camping as per the experiences of most of the campers.
- One thing that most campers do is that they usually stick to the original place only. If you are out for camping for a fair amount of time then it’s probably good to explore other places as well. Instead of sticking to one place you should check out nearby locations and visit the local attractions as well to enhance your camping experience.
As you can see from the above-stated steps, it’s not so hard to learn camping. At first, the idea of camping sounds a bit difficult but once you get to know the basics about it everything gets a lot easier. For a beginner who doesn’t know even the slightest thing about camping it sure is a hard thing to do but is not next to impossible. For instance, learning how to set up a tent is hard for many especially the newbies. However, once you start doing it on regular basis or do some practice it becomes a lot easier.
Plus camping is a great source of fun and adventure and on the higher end is an absolute stress and tension buster. Doing a bit of work for getting rid of these 2 issues even for a relatively short period of time is a cracking deal for many.
For a camper, having a wonderful camping experience is everything. Obviously, every camper imagines of spending the best time possible during his camping time but let’s face it’s simply not the case most of the times for most of us. However, there are certain things that you can work upon in order to take it closer to being the perfect camping experience. There are tons of camping tips and tricks that can save you a lot of time and money alongside enhancing your journey experience. These usually ignored camping tips will certainly help you in one way or the other so make sure you follow most of it if not all.
- There are 4 requirements of camping inspired from basic necessities of human beings and day to day life of most of the people. These are food, water, clothes, and shelter. These 4 essentials must be kept on extreme priority basis regardless of your camping place.
- Apart from these 4 basic requirements, there are 2 more things that should be given a high priority to. These are fire and camping gear. Fire is helpful and necessary in a lot of cases. Fire helps you cook food, enhance the ambiance, keep bugs and other wild animals away etc. Camping gear, on the other hand, helps facilitate a lot of camping efforts to ease out basic camping tasks and essentials.
- Camping sure does seems to be a costly thing to do but you will be surprised to know that it is actually possible to do on a tight budget as well. As long as you can fulfill the 4 basic requirements and work up on the most important camping gear then you can surely go out on this journey. Plus there is always a way to maximize the worth of your spend if thorough and efficient research is done.
- Organizing is considered to be the hardest part by many campers so is often ignored. Dividing your campsite into small zones can surely help ease out this process.
- Camping asks for drastic measures on packing stuff up. Thus, it pays off to be smart in this area. Instead of using normal backpacks it’s a better option to go for compression backpacks. These will help you carry more stuff in comparatively lower spaces.
- Safety should not be ignored in camping. In fact, it should be given high priority as well. A cell phone along with an inbuilt GPS system or a separate GPS is a must. Plus it’s important to carry maps of your camping location along with medical kits to tackle any emergency situations.
- In order to make the most out of your journey, it’s important to study about your location well. This way you will be able to plan outdoor and other recreational activities for your camping more effectively.
Camping is leaving the hustle bustle of your life and walking on a way to connect with nature. Thus, it is important to make sure to keep this path clean and damage free for others as well.
It’s your sole duty as a camper to not bring any harm to nature on your journey and if it does happen then work at your level best to fix it as you never know there are probably other campers like you planning to visit the same location pretty soon.