The 10 essential items you need for camping.

10 camping essentials

Whether you've been camping all your life or this is your first time sleeping out under the stars, there are a few things every outdoorsman needs. Here are your 10 essential items for camping:

  1. Tent: Let's start with the obvious. You'll need to bring along a tent to protect you from wind and rain, insects and to give yourself a little privacy if you're camping with friends or at a busy campground. A tent is one of the best ways to customize your experience – if you're feeling rugged, you can get something simple and small, while those looking for a little more luxury should be able to find a tent that lends itself to a more comfortable experience.
  2. Sleeping bag: Another basic necessity, make sure you bring along a sleeping bag that is appropriate for the time of year you're going to be out camping. 
  3. Backpack: It's a good idea to bring a backpack along even if you're driving right up to the campsite. If you're going to set out on day trip or even a short hike up the trail, you can bring supplies with you.
  4. Food: Even if you feel ambitious and expect to fish for your lunch and dinner, bringing along your own food is a must. Consider granola bars for an easy breakfast, trail mix for a snack and dehydrated meals just in case the fish aren't biting.
  5. Water: Bring along as much water as you can, especially if you are driving to your campsite and don't have to haul it over miles of trails. You should also have some kind of water purification system with you at all times.
  6. Fire: There are a few ways to start a fire, so make sure you are prepared for at least a couple. Whether you bring waterproof matches or a fire starter, be sure to know how to properly and safely get a fire going.
  7. Security: Any electronics, important documents or firearms need to be kept secure, especially while you're away from your tent. Bring along a mini safe or small lockbox to keep in your tent or car.
  8. First aid: Always bring along a well-stocked first-aid kit for emergencies.
  9. Light: Whether it's a head-lamp, a flashlight or a lantern, make sure you have some kind of light for dark nights.
  10. Layers: Even if you're camping in the middle of the summer, nights can get chilly and you never know when a cold front can move in – bring plenty of layers just in case.

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