Camping is an activity you can participate in all year long. It is a great way to learn about nature, have fun outdoors and get to know your friends and family even better, but it only takes a moment for something to go south, especially if you’re new to the whole camping thing. In this article, we’ll go through some of the basic camping safety measures so you maintain your camp safety on a high level even if you’re just a camping beginner and still learn about the basics.
Choosing A Campsite And Shelter
The first thing you’ll have to do is to find the proper campground. Inform yourself about the area you’d love to camp in. Once you’ve found the one that fits your age, possible physical problems, or other things you have to think about, it is time to find the best shelter for that campsite. You can also learn about different campsite types here.
Some campsites allow RV camping, others have cabins, but most campers still prefer using a tent. According to your shelter, you’ll need specific camping gear like a sleeping pad, portable kitchen, etc. Check our camping gear checklist here.
Inform About The Weather
This should be on the top of your priorities. Before you hit the road, make sure to check on the weather forecast at least a week before your trip, but starting as far as one month before is recommended. If you’ll be camping during winter, here you’ll find everything you need to know about winter camping if you’re a beginner. If it is still warm, but the forecast says it may be rainy, make sure you have extra clothes, and follow the simple instructions for pitching a dry campsite in the rain.
Be Responsible With Your Food Storage
While meeting wildlife is one of the most exciting parts of camping, having to deal with wild animals that are after your food is not fun at all and can be really dangerous. To avoid it, make sure not to leave food leftovers on a picnic table or anywhere where the animals could smell it. Use waterproof, tight containers, and insulated coolers.
Wash Your Hands
Camping means you’ll be touching lots of ground, leaves, trees… To avoid any unwanted bacteria reaching into your organism and creating problems with your health, make sure to wash your hands before every meal you take and after every nature-related activity.
Chase Away The Insects
Mosquitos are not only annoying but they also can spread many different diseases. The same goes for tics, which are not only potentially harmful to dogs but also humans. To avoid it, think about wearing long-sleeved shirts and pants during your hike, and make sure to inspect your body for ticks once you get back to your shelter. Also, there are many insect repellers you can use to chase away mosquitos, flies, and other insects.
Possible Allergy Issue
Whether you have allergies or not, it is always a good idea to have something that will help you in case of a reaction. Remember, if you camp at an unknown and unfamiliar place, there may be some stuff that can cause it that you’re unaware of, like some plant or an insect bite. Before you go, check with your doctor about the best anti-allergy medicine and make sure you have it with you all the time. Also, if needed, make sure you get vaccinated.
Sun Protection Is Essential
No matter the season or the weather, sun rays still reach your skin and can cause burns on it. To protect it here is what you should do:
- Always wear a hat
- Always wear sunglasses
- Don’t hike during midday
- Use sunscreen
- Use lip screen
- If you’re on the road, stay in the shade
Feeling thirst most likely means you’ve already started to dehydrate and your body has already started to suffer because of it. To avoid this, drink water regularly during the day. If you go on a longer trip, make sure to have enough water for at least 3 up to 5 extra days included in your emergency kit. You can check the water bottles here.
Be Careful About Wildlife
Two main rules regarding wild animals to help you stay safe are:
- Don’t touch
- Don’t feed
By feeding animals, you may provoke an unwanted reaction that may end up injuring you, while touching wild animals can be not only unhealthy, but it can also be interpreted as an attack and force the animal in a defensive position and cause aggression. Respect their whereabouts and their home and you’ll be OK.
If you can’t avoid touching a wild animal or any physical contact whatsoever, make sure to wash your hands using soap, or use a hand sanitizer with no less than 60% alcohol.
Hypothermia is something that can happen anytime during winter, spring, or autumn. It occurs when the outside temperature is too low and it cools your body down. To prevent it, start by bringing a proper cold weather tent, bedding, and clothing. Use a plastic ground cloth placed under your tent to prevent moisture from reaching in from the bottom. If the weather is too hot, wear light colors, lightweight clothes that should fit loosely, and drink lots of fluids, but avoid alcohol.
Be Prepared For Everything
Nature and weather are unpredictable and you can never be completely certain how will it behave and what could happen, especially if you camp in the wild. That’s why you should always be ready and prepared for basically anything. Most of the time, if something goes wrong, reacting calmly to a situation will significantly increase the chances of your survival.
There is also some other stuff you can do, that will help you in extreme situations:
- Have a first aid kit with you
- Bring a compass or a GPS and a map
- Have an emergency blanket with you
- All needed medications and painkillers
Inform Others About Your Plan
Before you go, make sure someone knows your location and your plan. Print it out and give it to your family, friend, or any authority. Also, write down the key dates and do your best to stick to your schedule. If you extend your time out there, make sure to let them know.
Create A Checklist
Yes, there are many things you’ll have to think about for your camping trip, and it may seem like something complicated, but once you get into the routine, you’ll see that it is not a much of a problem, while at the same time it will help you and all the other parts of your camping party enjoy your time in nature without worrying about their own safety. To avoid forgetting something, make a checklist, and follow it step by step. This way you won’t have to think about all of these things constantly.
You’ll be going on a camping trip to have fun, and you’ll bring the fun to the maximum by thinking about camp safety.
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There are not many better ways to bond with your friends and family than camping, but it requires you to be responsible. This article about camping safety will make things easier, so you can focus on a fun part instead of spending time and energy thinking about what to do to keep you and other campers safe.
More Camping Reviews:
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- Festival Camping
- Tent Vestibule
- Camping Health and Safety Tips, cdc.gov