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Camping Gear - What You Need To Know
by: Steve Dolan

There's something about heading off to visit Mother Nature, with nothing but you, lots of trees and a cheerful campfire. It's the best way to experience total peace and quiet. There are no other people, no smog, nothing to do but relax for the weekend. If this sounds irresistible to you, then make sure you do some planning before you head off.

Check out what sort of camping gear you already have. While you might be keen to escape the modern world, it might not be so much fun if you're sleeping on hard ground with a thin sleeping bag and it starts to rain. Don't worry if you don't have all the gear you need for your great escape into nature. If you look online you'll find plenty of sites where you can look at camping gear, compare different styles and brands, then buy what's right for you.

It can be a bit more difficult to know what you need if you've never been camping before. Generally, a tent is necessity. You can chance the weather, but that's only for the very hardy souls! Perhaps if you're going to be close to some well protected caves you can get away without a tent, but otherwise you'll be very glad you have one when that thunderstorm rolls in. Persistent insects and wildlife are also less of a nuisance when you're in a tent.

If you're planning on cooking any food over the campfire, a good campfire grill makes life much easier. If there are fire restrictions or there's no wood available for a campfire, then take along a camping stove. You'll also need some basic cooking utensils, including some pans. Never use your best utensils out of the kitchen; they inevitably get burnt, melted, lost or almost impossible to clean.

Just in case the stars aren't sufficient, a strong torch with fresh batteries or a camping lantern can help. If you need to go wandering in the night, you'll want to be able to check out your surroundings. For sleeping, make sure your sleeping bag is suitable for the conditions you'll be encountering. If you have a lightweight summer bag and it starts to snow, you won't get much sleep because you'll be shivering the whole night.

If you're really planning to get away from the world, to the point that you won't be near your car at night, then you'll need a backpack to carry everything with you. Modern designs are truly wonderful, with all sorts of features to make carrying a pack more comfortable. You can find packs suitable for anything you might plan to do, including strolling round a local park right through to heavy going trekking in the wilderness. Take the time to think about what you need to use the backpack for, perhaps even visit a camping store and chat to the salesperson, but if you choose wisely you won't regret it.

Remember, in the end it's important to travel light when you're going camping. You don't want to have so much stuff in your backpack that you can't even lift it! It's easy to get carried away and buy far too many things and spend a lot of money, but it doesn't need to be that way. Take the time to think about the sort of camping you're likely to do, where you're likely to go, what the weather conditions will probably be, and then choose carefully. By doing that, you'll get the maximum use out of whatever camping gear you buy, and so you'll get great value for money.

About The Author:
Steve Dolan is an avid camper who escapes to the great outdoors at every opportunity. Research the best gear on the web at

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The information presented herein, while deemed to be correct, is not guaranteed. All information including directions, costs, distances, amenities, measurements, dates, etc. are gathered from many different sources and are deemed to be as accurate as possible but not guaranteed. The Webmaster / Free Guide To Northwest Camping / Site Owners are not liable for any errors or omissions in this info sheet. The reader of this material is expected to verify the accuracy of this content.

Page last updated 05/17/2015

The Free Guide To Northwest Camping is a free guide to both privately owned and publicly owned (state, county and federal government) campgrounds.  The editors of the Free Guide To Northwest Camping do not specifically endorse any of the campgrounds listed in this site.  Not every available campground is covered in this free camping guide.  Many of the privately owned and operated campgrounds do not allow tent camping.  If in doubt, call the campground first.

The authors of the Free Guide To Northwest Camping do not accept payment from any agency or private campground owners.  In this way we insure that every description in this free guide is unbiased.  Covered are campgrounds owned and operated by state and federal agencies, private RV campgrounds, RV parks, family campgrounds, and camping sites for both tents and all types of RV campers.  While free campgrounds are listed and described, pay per night campgrounds far outnumber the free sites.

Please use the email link above to notify the editors of the Free Guide To Northwest Camping of any errors or omissions.  New campgrounds are added weekly.

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