10 Camping Essentials That You Shouldn’t Leave Home Without
Proper planning prevents poor performance; so says the timeless business credo. But the same also applies to your next camping trip. In such an unforgiving land as Australia, heading out bush in shorts and a singlet with a packet of skittles for sustenance is, putting it lightly, inadvisable.
It starts with packing the right gear. There are 10 non-negotiables that every Aussie camper should ensure are packed in the kit bag, designed to get you through the trickiest of outback camping situations. So what’s on the list?
First Aid Kit
Accidents happen in the outback, where medical services aren’t exactly at your beck and call. Whether it be a simple cut or bruise, or something as serious as a snake bite, you need to have some form of first response gear at the ready. A small first aid kit can make a huge difference when things don’t go to plan.
A weatherproof trap can be a godsend when Mother Nature turns against you. Good as protection underneath your tent, or a makeshift veranda for your campsite, a tarp can be the difference between perfect comfort and extreme discomfort on your next camping adventure.
Rope has a million uses when camping, particularly for those boy scouts who can tie a variety of knots. Create a makeshift clothesline, drag sizeable firewood back to your camp with a car, use it to hold your tarp veranda up; this list goes on. Don’t leave home without one.
Lighter/Pack of Matches
Fire, particularly in winter, is a vital element of the camping experience. It gives you warmth and cooking options, as well as a sort of outback TV; don’t tell me you couldn’t happily just stare at a fire for 3 hours straight. But unless you’ve got the patience of Nelson Mandela and the forearm endurance of Popeye, rubbing two sticks together may not be your best avenue to that life-giving flame. Take a lighter.
On a cloudy night that takes away the moon and the stars, and with no artificial light glowing from suburban streetlamps, it is astounding how dark the outback can get. A torch or headlamp is a must if you prefer not walking into trees and creeks.
Compass and Maps
‘Who needs a physical map and compass when I’ve got an electronic map and compass’, you might say to yourself. I’d reply by pointing out the fact that there can be a severe lack of power points and mobile phone towers in the outback. If things don’t go quite to plan, and your phone is either lacking in battery or signal, you may need to engage in a bit of old-school orienteering. A physical map and compass could prove to be a lifesaver.
Whether it be a Swiss army knife or a multi-function plier tool, a good quality piece of all-in-one machinery can prove to be the best camping purchase you make. A knife, a corkscrew, tweezers, pliers, scissors and even a toothpick; a multi-function tool takes up next to no space in your bag, and will repay you in style.
If things turn particularly bad, an emergency blanket could prove the difference between smiles and tears. Designed to reduce a person’s heat loss which would normally occur from thermal radiation, convection and water evaporation, an emergency blanket (or ‘space blanket’) is a thin, super low weight blanket made of reflective plastic. The metallic surface can also reflect the sun and serve as a distress beacon for stranded campers.
‘One of these things is not like the others’, I hear you say. Yes, you need to pack peanut butter. While the classic ‘pack a Mars bar for an emergency’ line of thought has some merit, chocolate melts. In peanut butter you’ve got a valuable source of fat and protein, a long shelf life, and flexibility in how you ingest it. Keep a jar with your camping gear.
All Weather Gear
So you’ve checked the weather forecast, and you’re looking at sunny skies. Hooray! Or so you think. The thing about weather is it’s changeable. If we can’t trust professional meteorologists to know whether it’s going to rain in three days’ time, we’d best pack for the worst. You don’t know the value of dry clothes until you’re wearing wet ones, so ensure that you’ve got a weatherproof jacket on board.
So there you have it. Your camping ducks are all in a row. And now that you’ve got the camping must-haves, you can hit up the team at Caravan RV Camping to check off the camping should-haves.
Click here to shop online for Australia’s best Caravan & Camping goods!
DISCLAIMER* Please note, this advice is general in nature and we strongly recommend consulting the product manual and where relevant, a professional installer.