best camping checklist essentials

best camping checklist essentials

On my last camping trip, my (future) wife (so, Camping Queen) asked me how I could remember everything. Well, it’s easy: just write a damn checklist!

So for you, my fellow readers, and only for you, here is the ultimate “You Shall Not Forget” checklist of things to bring for a camping trip.

Checklist: You Shall Not Forget

  • to read the Camping Do’s and Don’ts while camping in Provincial Parks
  • to bring a tent, of course. WTF?!
  • Consider bringing your hammock as well. Always good to have a portable bed for amazing nap along the shore.
  • to bring a warm sleeping bag and a pad.
  • to buy and bring a first aid kit. I can not help it, because it is the last thing you think about bringing in, but you are not afraid.
  • to bring a decent peer of snickers. Believe me, I saw so many dumbass hurt on a trail because they were wearing flip-flops or heels. Come on ! Hiking is serious, and hiking is what you do while camping, so bring good damn shoes. And do not forget their best friend: the good’ol cotton socks.
  • that even in summer, nights are sometimes chilly, so bring warm clothes. Long sleeves and long pants will also save you from bugs. NEVER forget about a rain coat, even if the weather forecast is clear.
  • that you’re in Canada, land of the bugs. 25% DEET bug repellent is dangerous but essential. If you can find Lemon Eucalyptus oil, it’s safer and as effective as DEET, but watch out: “Nature shops” sell Lemon Eucalyptus oil that is just a mix of lemon oil and Eucalyptus oil and this DOES NOT WORK! Lemon Eucalyptus is a different species that synthetizes the compound that repells bugs.
  • to bring a cool fire starting kit. Steel flint magnesium stone starter fire is great, and you also can make awesome DIY fire starting kits with straw and cotton. And if you plan to go for a canoe trip, just wrap everything in a container to keep it dry.
  • to bring purell to your hands (and light a fire). You’ll get dirty, for sure.
  • to get a real knife with a pocket clip. You’ll use it to cut some thin slices of sausage (or to cut the cheese), fight against bears or threat those kids on the next campsite, who can not shut the hell up and yell all night long.
  • to bring a tarpaulin and ropes to make you a life-saving canopy.
  • to get a flashlight. Headlights are so 2003! Now the trend is on flashlights, come on. Live with your own time, my friend. If you are looking for the best flashlight ever, buy a Foursevens LED flashlight, they are powerfull, low energy eaters and rugged (Mountain Equipment Coop sell them).
  • to bring your camera and batteries to run it.
  • to buy this BioLite CampStove. You can boil water for a nice tea and recharge your cellphone or GPS on the go. It’s light, powerfull and affordable. And that’s the end of buying gas cans!

You shall think about:

  • finding a decent source of power. Motomaster Eliminator Power Box. You will be charged to your devices and rechargeable batteries, and will not get your car stuck for the DC plug too long. I love the DC to AC plugin and the USB plug. The only “con” is the size and weight of a canoe trip. For such a trip, go for a Goal Zero Sherpa 50 power pack.
  • And to recharge your power pack, think about a solar panel. Nowadays, you can find some affordable.
  • borrowing a gold axis at Hachette. It makes your life easier, and it’s always fun to throw.
  • bringing binoculars to do some bird watching or to watch the moon. Or to do some voyeurism on the beach.
  • reading a lot of resources before going. Once on your campsite, you might not want to go to the best hiking spot or horse riding trail.
  • stopping at your favorite LCBO and get a great bottle of wine before leaving the big city. Local LCBO you can find in the backcountry just suck, so you’re a wine amateur, bring your own wine.
  • buying a bike rack and bring your bike to the campsite, you will love it.