Bringing along the right camping supplies and gear is a vital part of any successful camping trip. The following camping checklist is a general guide for the average family camping weekend. Your camping supply list may differ, depending on the climate, location, and type of camping facilities you are visiting. If you are backpacking, kayak or canoe camping, or enjoying another type of camping where gear weight is crucial, check our lightweight backpacking tips.
Shelter and bedding are two of the most important items on your camping supply list. Primitive camping trips may require nothing more than a tarp to protect you from the ground’s moisture and a good sleeping bag, but your family camping checklist should include 1 or 2 adequately sized tents, tent stakes and extra stakes, and a hammer and stake puller. Ground covers, or tarps slightly larger than the bottom of your tent, are great for protecting your camping tent from moisture and dirt. You may also want to bring along a small broom to keep your tent clean and an outdoor mat for your entrance.
There are many different options for bedding and sleeping gear, but your camping checklist may include air mattresses or camp pads, like the Coleman Rest Easy pad, sleeping bags, and even pillows and blankets. Remember to bring extra blankets and comforters for cool nights, picnics, and play areas. You may also want to include a Coleman shelter to protect your food or just for an escape from the heat.
Clothing is another essential on your camping supply list. The types of clothes you pack will depend, of course, on the weather, as well as the activities you are planning. For a simple weekend trip, pack 3 sets of clothing along with something to sleep in, a jacket or sweatshirt, and rain gear. If you are planning on hiking, you may want long pants and hiking shoes, as well as extra socks. Don’t forget swimsuits, sandals for the pool, beach, or bathhouse, and some sort of hat for head protection. For longer camping trips, make use of the laundry facilities most campgrounds offer and only add 1 or 2 extra sets of clothing to your packing list.
Good hygiene is just as important on your camping trips as it is at home. Review your camping checklist carefully and remember all the toiletries and personal items you will need. If you’re visiting a campground with shower facilities, store your toiletries in easy to carry, waterproof containers. Otherwise, there are a variety of Coleman camp showers available. Remember soap, deodorant, dental care products, hair care, as well as medications and other personal items you may need.
Rubber totes or rugged duffel bags are great for storing and packing your camping gear. Consider packing an individual clothing bag and shower tote for each person to make things simple. For easy locating, store less used items together in separate bags or containers, like rain equipment, swimsuits and towels, camping games, and beach toys. Laundry bags are very useful for keeping dirty clothes separated, as well as for the bathhouse. Don’t forget a bath towel, washcloth or sponge, and a change container with quarters for some showers and laundry facilities.