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Let’s face it – camping requires a lot of gear, big and small.
And despite my best efforts (and likely yours too), there always seems to be camping gear left behind. Usually it’s those small items like bug spray that don’t take up a lot of space, but are so critically important for a good camping trip.
With that in mind, here’s a quick list of camping gear you need, but always seem to forget.
First Aid Kit
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The obvious benefit of having a first aid kit is that it gives you the supplies you need to address sicknesses and minor injuries that might occur on your trip.
Yet, how often do you forget your kit at home? Or, alternatively, how long has it been since you refreshed the first aid kit you keep in your camping totes or RV?
I’m in the latter situation – I have a first aid kit that lives in my camper, but I always forget to go through it each year and replace outdated medicines and supplies. Don’t make that same mistake!
Do whatever it takes to remember to update your kit or buy a new one. Put a sticky note on the bathroom mirror in your camper, that way you’ll see it when you dewinterize it in the spring. Set a reminder in your phone to buy a kit. Whatever it takes – you don’t want to be in a situation in which you need one, but don’t have one because you forgot it!
Camping Gear You Need: Bug Spray and Sunscreen
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I don’t know about you, but I simply cannot keep track of these things. Maybe it’s because they come in small packages? I’m not sure…all I know is I probably have ten bottles of each, yet there has been more than one occasion in which I went camping and somehow forgot to pack either one.
Again, this could just be a situation in which you need to find a place for the bug spray and sunscreen to live in your camping totes or RV and leave them there all year long. Just make sure that, like the first aid kit, that you throw out old bug spray and sunscreen and get new ones to replace them as needed.
While we’re at it, throw hand sanitizer in as well. Particularly in the age of COVID, having hand sanitizer and hand wipes is critical – even when you’re camping.
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No list of camping gear you need would be complete without mentioning spare batteries.
I know in my camper I have several flashlights and lanterns that I check each spring to ensure they’re working. I also have a locking plastic container (about the size to accommodate a sandwich) that I use to store spare batteries. The container never leaves the camper, so I’m sure I always have batteries in case they’re needed.
My problem is remembering to refresh my stash of spare batteries…
Having a pile of batteries is great, but only if they actually work! Add a reminder to your phone or add an additional note to the sticky note I mentioned earlier so you remember to put fresh batteries in your camping gear each spring.
Camping Gear You Need: Duct Tape
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You can solve any problem with duct tape, right?
Well, maybe not, but this jack-of-all-trades tape is certainly something that can be of value to you on your camping trips – provided that you remember to bring it.
A buddy of mine wraps duct tape around his water bottles, that way if the roll of tape doesn’t make it on the trip, at least there’s a few feet of it around his water bottle that can be used.
Duct tape is especially important if you tent camp (as it can cover tears in the rain fly) and if you hike (as it can cover tears in your clothing or gaiters, or even be used to cover blisters on your feet). Like I said, this stuff is a jack-of-all-trades item!
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Whether you’re camping in an RV at an established campground or you’re backpacking in the backcountry, you need trash bags to contain your refuse.
Yet, as important as trash bags might be, I always forget to bring extras, which leaves me searching for grocery sacks in my truck and camper to make do.
I’m not sure how I forget trash bags (or any of these other items, for that matter), but it happens more often than I’d like to admit.
If you’re in the same boat, let’s endeavor to do better about remembering the items on this “camping gear you need” list. After all, these items will make our trips more comfortable and more successful!