Camping is a fairly new outdoor activity in India, currently the most common way people do it is by signing up for a camping trip with some trek organizers. If you are choosing that, you won’t need any of these camping tips because your organizer will take care of it.
But what if you want to go camping alone or with your friends?
I am sharing with you all, the things I have learned from my camping experiences. I hope this will help you prepare for your next camping trip 🙂
So, In no particular order… let’s begin.
- Put your batteries in your pockets while sleeping – Especially if you are going to a cold place, the batteries die fast in cold temperatures. By keeping them in your pocket your body heat will prevent them from draining fast.
- Don’t forget to take a camping lamp with you – It’s very handy, I have a small LED lamp which lightens up my tent well. Take a headlamp for doing other chores at night.
- Put your food away while sleeping – This is mainly for the regions frequented by Bears, luckily it’s kind of a rare thing to encounter a Bear in India but you have to be careful because there are other animals too.
- Don’t leave your tent open at night and prevent insects from getting inside – Especially if you have a light inside your tent, insects get attracted towards the light. On my last trip, I accidentally kept it open for a few minutes and there were spiders and some bugs already inside my tent.
- Choose the right food items – Here I am talking about de-hydrated/ pre-packed meals, I would suggest you try some of the meals before taking them on your trip, here’s my post for some options for de-hydrated food options you can get in India.
- Double check your cooking gear/stove and carry an extra lighter or matches, don’t rely on the built-in ignition system on your stove – Because it gets useless over a period of time.
- Carry a dish-washer liquid soap and a sponge for your camping cookware/utensils – It’s handy and works better for removing the oils from the utensils as compared to your regular soap/handwash.
- Carry some paracord/nylon cord for drying clothes when the sun comes up – I have done a lot of trekking and camping during the monsoon season and in the rain, a rope is very useful if you want to dry your trekking pants/ socks etc.
- Never forget a cap, it acts as a visor for your face in the rain – It protects you from the sun, the rain, the glare, wind, and what not?
- Drink lots of water
- Take pouches of your favorite Tea or Coffee – I am not a coffee person and I prefer tea, you can stop anywhere on the trail and make a refreshing tea/coffee for yourself, bring some biscuits and cookies if you like.
- Take some packets of soup/anything you love which is easier to cook – For a perfect evening snack.
- Learn at least three fire starting techniques – so that if one fails, you can still make a fire and survive to tell the stories to your grandchildren.
- Take a bushcraft knife with you – You can also use it as a defense weapon but most of the time you will be using it to process wood etc.
- Take a pepper spray with you – For self-defense against humans and animals.
- Take some extra garbage bin bags – They are quite useful! you can use them to organize your stuff, put your wet stuff in them, you can also put your litter in them and bring it along.
- If camping in forests, check for any dead trees/branches around/above your tent – make sure the area above/around your tent is clear from any potential falling branch or something.
- Choose the right tent size – I would suggest to always bring a one-person-extra size tent, for e.g. when I go alone, I always take a two-person tent because I get plenty of room inside to keep my stuff organized and sleep comfortably.
- If you have some Beer cans with you and you are near a water source, put them in the river or stream to cool’em – yep! but don’t forget to secure the cans with some rock.
- Bring some extra duct tape with you – For fixing your tent in case you get a hole in your tent’s tarp, trust me you don’t want water dripping from the holes if it rains.
- Take zip-lock bags for organizing your stuff – I put my toiletries in one, and my camera and electronic gear in another.
- Always clean the campsite before leaving, don’t litter!
- Check the weather forecast before planning your trips – The weather is unpredictable in the mountains. I remember my trek to Deo tibba basecamp earlier this year, it was during summer and we were stuck in heavy snowfall.
- Take a book/comics with you 🙂 – Especially if you are alone, or you will get bored.
- Learn about survival in the wild – Stuff like making a fire, making a shelter, things you can use as tinder, how to find fatwood etc.
- Never eat any wild plants/berries/mushrooms or any other flora unless you are 100% sure about it – Never! They can be poisonous.
- Secure valuable items such as your phone, wallet, keys etc – Which you are not going to use while camping, and put them in a secure place inside your backpack.
- Do some proper research about the place you are going – Which includes checking recent photos on Instagram, inquiring about the place from the user who posted it.