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Sunday, July 14, 2024

How to Make Camping Easier

Photo by gradyreese via iStock

This article was last updated on May 1, 2024.

It’s not that camping is hard; it’s just a lot of work. 

Even if you car camp and don’t have a tent to set up or a trailer to pull, you still have several hours of organizing your gear, getting food together, and getting your vehicle ready to hit the road.

But, as with anything, there are strategies you can employ to make camping easier. This article explores a few of those options!

Table of Contents

How to Make Camping Easier: Keep Your Gear as Organized as Possible

Ford Bronco Aiden James Rear Storage Gear Plate

When I was growing up, my family camped in a tent. We had a small station wagon to get us and our gear to our favorite campsite, and even though we didn’t have that much stuff, it always ended up in a jumbled mess in the back of the car.

And even if the back of the car didn’t look like a tornado hit it, the trunks my parents used to keep smaller items most certainly did. Pop the lid on one of those babies, and it was nothing but a disorganized mess. My parents spent most of our time at camp organizing those stupid trunks rather than actually enjoying themselves.

Fortunately, we don’t have to suffer the same fate with our camping adventures today!

Ford Bronco Aiden James Rear Storage Gear Plate

One of the keys to keeping your gear organized is having a solid system that allows you to organize your gear in the first place. Whether you drive a truck, an SUV, a wagon, or something in between, there are storage solutions that aid in having a neat and tidy area to store your camping gear.

One such setup is a gear plate from Aiden James Customs, like the one shown above for the 4-door Ford Bronco.

Ford Bronco Aiden James Rear Storage Gear Plate

As you can see, these gear plates fit seamlessly into the rear of the vehicle and provide a solid foundation upon which you can add loads of storage solutions. Mount your jack to the plate to keep it secured, add a sliding drawer for easy gear storage, or mount your fridge to the plate. The possibilities are endless!

In fact, these gear plates also offer tie-down points, so if you have larger items you want to bring, you can secure them for the drive to the campsite. Better still, if you want to use a particular slide, Aiden James will add the mounting points to the gear plate for you. Nice!

As you can see above, these plates are made with Baltic Birch and coated with a 3mm-thick Rhino Lining to ensure long-term durability. All hardware for installation is included as well.

Speaking of installation, you don’t have to modify the cargo area of your vehicle to accommodate these plates. In fact, you can install it in about two minutes, so it’s just about the easiest camping storage solution you can find!

Aiden James Customs has gear plates for various vehicles and plates with various features, too. 

For example, you can add a gear plate with twin slide-out tables to your Fifth Generation 4Runner, as shown above, which gives you the organizational benefits of the gear plate while also giving you a couple of tables for preparing and eating meals.

Aiden James Customs also offers a double-decker drawer system for those who need to organize and secure a lot of gear.

The point is that if you want to make camping easier, it all begins with your camping rig. The better you equip it to be organized, the easier it will be to load up, hit the road, and have everything right where you need it!

Meal Prep is Where It’s At

Photo by nd3000 via iStock

I love to cook, whether it’s at home or while I’m camping, so this tip to make camping easier is one that I find to be a lot of fun.

Meal prep is a great way to cut down on the time you need to get meals hot and ready to eat while you’re camping. If you cook everything ahead of time at home, portion it out into space-saving containers, and put it in your fridge for the trip, you’ll have ready-to-eat meals that taste like home – because that’s where they were made!

Cooking everything (or most everything) at home also means you don’t have to bring your pantry to cook while camping. It might not seem like it would save you much space, but when you consider all the ingredients that go into a typical dinner, meal prepping at home can save a good deal of room in your camping fridge.

Planning your meals ahead of time and cooking them at home can also be a fun activity to do with your family. Get the kids involved in making their meals, and you’ll help them develop a love for cooking or at least appreciate the effort needed to have delicious meals.

Speaking of involving the family…

How to Make Camping Easier: Involve the Family

Photo by vorDa via iStock

As I noted earlier, camping is a lot of work. A great way to make camping easier is to involve your family or friends in the process of getting everything ready to go.

Think about it – you can take a day off from work to do it all yourself, or you can get your loved ones involved, delegate tasks to everyone, and cut your workload significantly.

Perhaps someone is in charge of getting all the sleeping bags and other bedding rounded up and packed, while someone else gathers up games and other entertainment for the trip. As mentioned above, cooking can be a group activity, as can packing everything up in your vehicles, RV, or camper.

I’m a huge fan of having a checklist for each camping trip, even when I go solo. But I’ve found that a checklist is even more critical when multiple people are involved; that way, everyone knows who’s responsible for what. Just tick off the boxes as tasks are complete, and you’re ready to rock when the checklist is done!

Check the Weather Before You Go

Hand checking weather on tablet

Photo by ra2studio via iStock

This seems like no-brainer advice to make camping easier, yet so many people don’t bother to do it…

Yet, checking the weather before you hit the road is crucial, particularly in the spring and fall when the weather can be more volatile. The last thing you want to do is depart for your trip thinking it will be sunny and warm and get there to find that it’s cold and rainy – and that you don’t have the appropriate gear.

Keep an eye on the weather in the week or so before you’re scheduled to leave. Doing so gives you a good idea of what the weather is supposed to be like so you can pack accordingly. Likewise, if the weather looks a little wild for your intended destination, keeping track of it well ahead of time allows you to change your plans and go camping elsewhere (or at another time) if needed.

Final Thoughts

Camping and fishing

Photo by Dimensions via iStock

We’re firmly in winter here in the northern hemisphere, and this is usually when I start getting antsy for spring camping. I enjoy winter camping, too, but there’s nothing like heading to the mountains in the spring to experience the rebirth of nature.

You can bet that I’m already planning my spring camping trips – and you should be too. It doesn’t need to consume your life by any means, but if you take the time now to do things like develop a camping checklist, you’ll be one step ahead when spring arrives.

Since spring will be here before we know it, let’s all commit to methods that help us make camping easier. After all, the easier it is, the more often we’ll go!

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