Preparation is essential for any outdoor adventure. Having the necessary supplies and equipment can make a difference in your overall enjoyment and experience. Checklists are a great tool to help with your organization.
Your camping list will vary according to the type of camping and activities you have planned, the places you are going, the time of year and the length of your trip. Add or remove items to suit your individual needs.
Air mattress – We bought the Coleman queensize mattress with a flocked surface, and slept like babies. Just don’t forget the air pump!
Air pump – Coleman battery-operated model runs on four "D" batteries and will either inflate or deflate a queensize mattress in about two minutes.
Aluminum Foil – Use this for making packet meals. For instance, just wrap up some sliced potatoes, onions, salt & pepper, and a little butter, seal the ends well, and lay it on the grill. Yummy!
Batteries – Be sure you have backup batteries of every size that you use, and that they’re fresh.
Camp Knife – Any version of a Swiss Army Knife is worth its weight in gold.
Camp Stool – This is a little folding stool with a canvas seat that’s easy to pick up and move around. Put a backgammon board over it and you have a great little table.
Can Opener – Indispensible item, get one with a good-sized crank. No electric openers, please!
Canopy – This is a large tarp that’s erected over the picnic table for shelter from sun and rain. Ours came with poles for each corner and one for the center, and the corners are staked down to keep it stable in the wind.
Chairs – Take a few comfortable lawn chairs with you for relaxing around the camp. They’ll get dirty so don’t spend a fortune on the fancy ones.
Cleaning sponge – Buy one that is a sponge on one side and a scrubber on the other to make washing those dishes easier.
Clothesline – Tie a piece of thin rope between a couple of trees, and drape your wet towels and swimsuits over it for drying.
Clothespins – Not just for drying clothes. These come in handy for lots of things when you need a spring clip to hold something in place.
Coffee Pot – Get the percolator variety with the glass bulb on top, like on the Maxwell House commercial. If you were born after 1970, practice using it at home before you go.
Comforter – We use an old tattered comforter on the floor of the tent, under the sleeping bags, for extra insulation.
Corkscrew – If you’re planning to have that bottle of cabernet beside the campfire, don’t forget this item. Pocket knives are NOT a very good substitute.
Cutting Board – Get a very small one, just enough to give you some clean food preparation surface. Who knows what that squirrel may have left on the picnic table?