According to the dictionary “camping” is defined as an activity in which people live temporarily in the outdoors. Actually our history is filled with examples of soldiers camping out during the American Revolution and people who move their whole campsites with them from place to place. But in today’s world, camping is more of a recreational past time enjoyed by families and individuals alike. Camping is a great way to enjoy the great outdoors, plus it is also an economical way to take family vacations.
Where else do you get to enjoy nature at its best? Campers do everything from swimming, bird watching, rafting, hiking, hunting, horseback riding, skiing, rock climbing, relaxing and a host of other activities to numerous to mention. I think the most important aspect of camping is that it enables people to escape from the everyday stress of life in general.
Of the many different types of camping, two of them come to mind immediately. Driving to a camp site and setting up camp near your car or recreational vehicle. This is called car camping and is especially a favorite pastime for families with children and senior citizens. Car camping sites will usually include an area for a tent, a fire pit, and restrooms. One thing you don’t want to do and that is to use your vehicle’s headlights to illuminate your camping site at night. This is a good way to get a dead battery and to annoy fellow campers in the surrounding areas. If you are looking for remote or solitary locations, then this is not your type of camping.
Secondly, we have campers that enjoy hiking to their wilderness camp site carrying all of their essential supplies such as a tent, sleeping bag, clothing, and food in a backpack. I would say that backpacking would definitely be for folks who are in good physical condition because you might just end up walking several miles. You may find that you have to cross small streams, and climb steep paths to reach a quiet and secluded campsite. The reward for backpacking to find that special camp site way out there can be beautiful views of surrounding mountains, wilderness and wildlife.
Now that we have talked about two different types of camping, how about some ideas on getting ready for that camping trip. Have you made up a list of items you want to bring? Spend some time on this so that you will not forget your important items like what kind of meals you may want to prepare. Have you made a list of your food items? Make sure all of your camping equipment is in working order. There is nothing as frustrating as setting up your campsite only to find a lantern that is not working or all of your tent components are not there. Be sure to bring plenty of clothing, layering your clothing is not a bad idea, always be prepared for unexpected changes in the weather.
So, let’s sum this up. If you have a weekend coming up with nothing planned, why not pack up your vehicle and head for the great outdoors. Unwind by sitting around the campfire at night, looking up at natures very own light show, going to sleep and waking up to the sounds and smells of nature. It just doesn’t get any better than that.