40 Ways To Bring A Little Home Comfort To A Camping TripBy Praseetha N
Being an outdoor person isn’t for everyone, mainly because of the lack of technology it involves and the hassles in completing simple tasks. However, instead of getting overwhelmed with the lack of tools, here’s a bunch of hacks that will help ease you into the wonder of camping. Before long, you will notice your muscles becoming less tense and your body relaxing into everything nature has to offer. From making your own DIY spoon to an easy way to prevent ticks from attacking you, we’ve curated a few tips to help even the beginner camper, it certainly isn’t easy to go camping, but you don’t need to suffer for it. These hacks are worth sharing with others even. Don’t keep these secrets only to yourself!
D.I.Y Acorn Whistle
Sometimes, no matter how much of an expert or an experienced climber you think you might be, there will always come a time where nature will have the upper hand and you will find yourself getting lost. This is why carrying a whistle or some sort of alert signal is always a good idea.
However, if you happen to have lost yours or forgot to pack it, here’s something that could help you out in a pinch. First, don’t panic and stay put. Search around for acorn caps and hold them in the same way as in the photo above. Just blow into the cavity and it will create a whistle.
Easy Coffee Filter
Being back in your own home in the bustling city, you can often find simple pleasure such as drinking your coffee and enjoying the sun in your face. Unless of course, you’re one of those people who wake up just in time to chug a cuppa and run out the door.
Well, with camping, you have plenty of time to do it all. However, the facilities to make your cup of steaming coffee may be a little difficult without your coffee maker. What we suggest here is that you pop your fave coffee grounds into a filter and tie ’em up with dental floss. When you want to have it, just pour hot water and that’s it.
Keep Your Sleeping Bag Warm
Being in the woods can run really cold at night, despite how hot it is in the afternoon. That is why making sure your tent is nice and toasty will help you sleep through the night and give your body less work to do to keep you warm.
Sure, you can keep the fire lit through the night but there will be a high chance that the fire will go out and you end up in a freezing cold tent! Instead, try this. Boil some water and keep them in several bottles. About 30 minutes before you head to bed, just tuck them into your sleeping bag and you will have a nice and toasty bed to climb into later.
Use Bread Tags As Clothes Pin
Doing laundry during your camping trips, especially longer ones, will require you to clean your clothes whether you like it or not. That’s unless you actually packed enough clothes and sheets to last you for weeks, then maybe skip this hack.
For you light packers, keep on reading. When doing your laundry, you are going to need a spot to dry your clothes and for that, we recommend bringing bread tags along. Just make sure that you have a lot kept over throughout the weeks to hang all your clothes. Nifty trick, huh?
Keep Light Items Safe
If you are the kind of camper to bring disposable cutlery and plates, then we hope this hack helps. Although your choices may not be eco-friendly, hey, we don’t know the full story to judge! Carrying around those flimsy tools is bound to get really messy and disastrous when the wind blows.
You get food toppling over and you’re left with people feeling miserable. Instead, opt to bring along a cake carrier for your lightweight utensils. That way, they stay clean throughout your entire trip. It’ll also keep the pesky insects and bugs away from devouring your food.
Fun Activities For Kids
Traveling with kids, especially several of them, can get tiring. So, when you reach the campsite, you will notice your kids raring to go, but mom and dad could use a little breather before getting started. So, this one is for you, tired parents.
Create a scavenger hunt list or perhaps even a bingo. This will keep the little ones occupied and use up all their energy. If you want to ensure they are plenty occupied while you set up the campground, add on some super hard-to-find stuff.
Float Your Keys
While some may see this and think “Just leave your keys in your tent!”, there are some of us who are not comfortable with doing so, especially car keys. So, here is a hack for you. Don’t throw away that empty wine bottle just yet, you could still use the cork.
All you will need here is a cork. It doesn’t matter what kind of cork just as long as it can float your keys back up should they fall into the water. However, if you are going into shallow running water, we suggest tying your keys onto something heavy so that it will sink right down and not float down the stream.
Amplify Your Music
Alright, while it is said we are supposed to be one with nature and enjoy everything it has to offer, let’s be real when we say not everyone who was born and raised in the city can easily relax to the sound of crickets and a random howl in the middle of the night.
This is why this hack is for you guys who need a little pop in your time in the forest. All you are going to need is a cup and your phone. Now, if your phone doesn’t have great volume, just plop it into the empty cup and it will act as a makeshift speaker.
There is always going to be a time where you might lose a utensil or there aren’t enough to go around. So what you should do in times like this (unless you don’t mind using your hands) is to grab an empty soda bottle. Make sure to cut it in a way that you get a decent amount of handle.
While the bottom of the bottle may be sturdy enough to hold heavier food, the handle could be flimsy. That’s where that duct tape will come in handy. Just wrap the handle so that it becomes sturdy enough to lift the food. It isn’t as difficult as it looks, it’s actually quite easy to replicate!
Ditch The Rice, Opt For Couscous
Rice is a great filler and it goes well with almost anything. However, cooking it takes up a lot of time and can get pretty tricky when you’re doing it over an open fire. You won’t be able to control the heat and will have to keep checking on it by lifting the lid and that’s a huge no-no!
Instead, bring along some couscous. They are easy to cook and take about only 5 minutes of your time. Plus, they also go great with lots of meals. All you will need is boiling water and a bowl and you will have your meal ready.
No matter where you go in this world, all situations come with their own set of dangers. Whether it’s snakes or bears or even rampant vehicles, you can’t always be safe. Not to mention the dangers of running into ill-intentioned human beings who are the worst sort of danger.
This is why, when camping, you need to keep your perimeter safe. Attach a glow stick to the mousetrap and run a tripwire to the trap. Anyone or anything that crosses that line will alert you with a loud crack and snap. Bear Grylls isn’t the only adventurer who’s got tricks up his sleeve.
This little hack is great for mealtimes and playtime! Keep in mind that it is for emergencies. Say you are having a meal with your friends around the fire and someone drops their plate or it flies . That can really put a damper on not only the meal but the rest of the party.
Instead of getting down, whip out the Frisbee you packed and give it a nice wash. You can just turn it over and it will double as a great plate! In fact, it’s a whole lot better seeing as the curved edges will keep soupy food from spilling over.
Pool Noodles To Keep Dry
Weirdly enough, this hack is rather ironic. You know how pop-up tents are super useful, right? However, they have this awful habit where it closes upon itself that almost seems like it does it on purpose. That’s where pool noodles come to save the day.
Nevertheless, we have an awesome way to counter that while keeping the rain from pooling at the top of the tent! Buy a few pool noodles and simply place them at the top of the tent, like you see in the photo. It will stop the tent from snapping shut and also keep the rain off of it.
Try as hard as you might to keep unwanted pests away from you; nature will always find their way. This is why this hack is not a cure, but rather for prevention. When in the woods, you will see all sorts of lovely creatures, but you will also see some less savory residents, like ticks.
And those suckers tend to want to follow anyone home and it is vital that you get them off you ASAP! Pack a little tube of liquid soap and a bunch of cotton balls. Soak a ball with the soap and then place it on the tick for about 20 seconds. It should come off easily.
Keep Those Silica Gels
When you buy medications, you often see those accompanying packets of silica gels. We are all guilty of throwing them out because what else are we going to need them for, amirite? Wrong. We are going to be using them for a lot of stuff!
Silica gels absorb humidity and there are loads of stuff that we own that retain humidity and ultimately ruins them. So, in this case, you are going to pop those packets into your pots and pans and it will keep them from going rusty. Trust us when we say that it will save you the heartache of getting home and seeing all of them ruined.
Fix Difficult Zippers
We have all run into the problem of a zipper just not cooperating when we need it the most! They mangle themselves to the point of no repair and you spend so long just trying to fix it that it just spoils your mood and wastes good sunlight.
So, instead of fretting, get a candle and rub in on the troublesome zippers. The wax will create a lubricant that will allow the zip to glide smoothly. This is especially useful when you’re rushing to pack your stuff up. You can also opt to do this before leaving for your trip.
It’s a no-brainer that camping comes with a lot of hand-washing. That’s fine and all, but the problem is that you constantly find yourself fumbling with the bother of having to find an outdoor sink, or perhaps even resorting to washing your hands at the stream, which isn’t safe in the dead of the night.
What you can do instead is to grab a bucket or jug of water and tie it to a tree. Next, get your bar of soap and put it into a clean pantyhose and strap it to the tree next to the jug. And there you have a portable washing station.
Easy Carry Matchbox
Matchsticks are one of the most important things to pack when going for a camping trip. You will be needing them for lighting your campfire, cooking your food, and even for just general lighting. However, keeping them dry can prove to be a challenge.
A lot of people have experienced dropping them onto the wet ground or even just dropping their entire tool kit into a puddle. To avoid that, what you can do is to get a plastic container of any kind. Get some sandpaper and just stick it on the lid and you will be able to keep your matchsticks safe and dry.
Camping doesn’t have to mean you will have to have a bad breakfast of just toasted bread and fruits. If you are someone who really needs fluffy eggs every morning, this one is for you! Now, we are not suggesting a way to bring your eggs still in their shells.
We all know how that usually turns out, with eggs everywhere and you spending more time cleaning up than enjoying your trip. Instead, get a little clear bottle with a tight lid. Now, you just toss in your eggs and voila! Just make sure you label the bottle so don’t end up overdosing on your eggs.
Keep Your Stuff Dry
This hack is for those who don’t have a waterproof rucksack. When going for a hike, you will come across several streams that you ultimately have to hop over. Or, you might encounter a spot of rain. This little trick will do wonders for you.
Well, usually when these things happen, your bag tends to get the brunt of the damage, leaving the content wet. A way to combat this, is to put all your content into a plastic bag first and seal the top lightly. That way you don’t really have to worry about slipping into a puddle.
Now before you get worried, what we mean by single-use is as you see in the picture below. Instead of using an entire bar that a bunch of people will be washing their grimy hands on, just do this instead. Have you heard of soap peels before? If you haven’t, then try this cool trick out.
Before leaving for your trip, grab a small container, or even the soap bar container, and a peeler. Now, you just shave the bar into large strips and you will have easy-to-use soap. Anyone can just grab one and have a quick wash. Plus, it will save your soap from getting all grimy.
Hang Hammocks From Your Car
Sitting around at the campsite can sometimes be uncomfortable, especially if you have those really fragile looking lawn chairs. And if you don’t have those and just sit on the ground, this is for you. Now, this isn’t exactly a DIY hack like the others but it is too awesome to not add it to the list.
You will need to find and buy these kinds of hammocks that you fix onto the back of your car. You will be feeling super comfy and you wouldn’t have to sacrifice anything. Moreover, you’ll still take in the gorgeous view of your surroundings. Looks cool, huh? That’s because they’re certainly one of a kind!
Mini First Aid Kit
It is a must to pack a first aid kit when going camping. No matter how experienced you may be, one must never underestimate nature. This is why getting a proper first aid kit is important and it doesn’t really matter if it’s large, because this little hack will help you out.
While it is impossible to lug around a huge bag full of supplies, you can just bring along empty prescription bottles and put in a few key items that will come in handy for an emergency. You can store this in your pocket for ease of access.
Use Biodegradable Marking Tape
Hiking can get dangerous, especially if you aren’t the type of hiker who is able to tell where you came from or recognize trails. And that is perfectly fine by the way; not many people are able to tell one tree from the other anyways.
So here’s a quick hack for you to ensure you don’t get lost on the way back. Make sure you get materials that are biodegradable so that you don’t leave trash behind. All you need to do is mark the trees you pass by so you just follow the trail back.
Don’t Forget The Duct Tape
This hack really isn’t a hack, but more of a reminder as to what you should remember to bring along on your camping trip. While it might not seem important, duct tape will really help you out in dire times. In not just one situation, but probably in more than 10!
Duct tapes are waterproof and can help seal broken object. So if you have a water bottle that you use to carry water and it has sprung a leak, duct tape can easy help fix that for the time being. Plus, if wounded tightly together like a braid, it becomes strong enough to hang heavy items on.
DIY Washing Machine
You wouldn’t think that this would be part of your worries while camping but it definitely does come in handy. This is particularly useful when you accidentally mess up your clothes and don’t have enough for the rest of the trip.
What you will need is a plunger and a bucket with a hole on the lid. The next part is a little strenuous, because you will need to start plunging the bucket. It might make your arms a little sore but hey, it’s a good way to get a workout in.
Keep Your Muddy Shoes Clean
With camping comes hiking, and with hiking comes muddy trails and ultimately muddy shoes. This can be helped and you can’t exactly hike in rain boots either. However, to ensure your car doesn’t get all dirty, you can pack old shower caps.
When you’re done with the shoes, make sure to give them a quick rinse and dry and just pop into the shower cap and put them in your car. However, keep in mind that if you have larger shoes, you may want to opt for a larger plastic bag.
Frozen Jugs Of Water
You will definitely be carrying along an ice cooler when you head for your camping trip and there will definitely be ice in there — but how do you get it? Instead of just tossing in ice which will later be unusable, consider freezing gallons of water and placing then inside the cooler.
You can keep your perishables as well as have cold water to drink later on when the ice melts! Plus, you can even use the water to cook knowing that it came from your home where the water is clean and you don’t have to keep running to a new water source.
Keep Mosquitoes Away
Without a doubt, the one creature you have to worry about when camping isn’t going to be bears or snakes but instead, those flying menaces who are so very interested in you, mosquitoes. Their high-pitched whine and those itchy bites are bound to keep you up all night.
A way to repel them is to grab a bundle of sage and throw them into the campfire. The smell will act as a natural repellent. In fact, if you are able to top up the sage every hour, you can probably sleep through the night without having to worry about getting bitten.
Handy Tic Tac
If you’re someone who uses Tic Tacs on the daily, make sure to keep those containers, because they are extremely handy long after you finish the contents. While you can use it to keep a bunch of other stuff, keeping spices in those containers are great for camping trips.
They will hold more than enough for you to season your food with! Plus, it’s small and easy to carry and won’t take too much space. All you need to remember is to label them so that it’s easier to cook later on. Trust us when we say that even though you can tell the difference at home, once you are at the site you won’t be able to tell what is salt and sugar.
The one thing that newbie camping goers tend to not realize is that the ground of your tent is actually very thin, so you will always want to bring something along to lay a foundation and cushion it so you are able to get a good night’s rest.
These floor tiles are perfect for just that! They are easy to carry along as they are detachable and at the same time, they are soft enough to give your back good support so that you don’t feel achy the next morning. They aren’t just great for kids but they’re ideal for camping too!
Set Your Doritos On Fire
This may leave some people gasping and going “How could you!” or “That’s blasphemy!” But before you get your trousers in a twist, we’re going to remind you that this hack is just for emergencies. It’s a last resort for when you need instant fire.
If you think about it, if you have to resort to this, you probably should have just packed more fire starters. Take a deep breath and put down the bag of Doritos. The next part is easy, just set it on fire and it will burn long enough for you to go find some wood. Good luck!
While you are sitting around the fire, lots of us will whip out marshmallows, sausages, and other kinds of snacks to roast. But did you know that if you were to roast a starburst on an open fire, they taste amazing? The sweetness of the candy will just ooze out and it will taste almost amplified.
However, keep in mind that putting candy over an open flame means that it will be super hot to the touch so make sure to cool it down first! Another way to eat it is if you put it on a roasted marshmallow. Yum! Another version of smores? Yay!
Easy Carry Pancake Mix
Eating in the woods does not always mean you have to go pick berries and only eat barbequed food. You can have your normal breakfast of steaming flapjacks as well! Now, carrying all those ingredients is ridiculous, especially eggs and milk, because you will not have anywhere to store them.
Instead, make the mix at home and pour it into a clean and empty ketchup bottle. Now you can easily have those pancakes for breakfast. However, keep in mind that if you intend on keeping a few bottles on standby for multiple days, you may want to opt for a cooler bag so that it doesn’t go bad.
Handy Toilet Paper Holder
Okay, we know you have read loads of stuff about how relaxing camping can be. You can sit around the fire and sing songs and share stories, you can watch the stars with your lover, all cuddled up under the blankets. Yes, it truly is beautiful — until someone has got to answer nature’s call.
While some places may set up port-a-potties, not every site is like that and you will have to make do with a secluded area. Now, carrying toilet rolls is a huge hassle! So what we recommend is that you put it in a tub and cut a slit through the side.
Easy Carry Cosmetics
Unlike going to a hotel where you can keep a bunch of toiletries strewn about the kitchen countertop, you don’t exactly have the same luxury when it comes to camping (and we mean proper camping, not the ones where you hole up in a luxury RV).
So, when it comes to carrying toiletries such as toothpaste, lotions, and even soaps, it can be a lot to carry! So what you need to do here is grab some straws and melt one opening together. Pour your desired liquid in and then just melt the other opening. Make sure to label them so you don’t end up putting toothpaste on your face.
The worst thing about camping trips is the cleaning-up part. While at home you have a dishwasher and a washing machine, in the woods, it is just you, a freezing cold stream and a scrubber. It’s not that easy to do dishes in nature, so we’re here to help you out with that.
While we can’t really help you with the washing part, here is a nice little hack for you to hang your pots and pans dry, instead of finding a spot to lay them on the dirty ground. Get your belt and fasten it around and tree. Get some hooks and place them on the belt as shown above and there you have an easy way to drying your utensils.
Portable Fire Starters
Packing up coals for your camping trip can prove to be a hassle, especially if you are going to be lugging about a huge bag of it. That’s why this little hack will save you lots of space and also looks much more organized. Who knew egg containers could be useful?
Certainly not us! (Before we read this, of course) In this hack, you are going to need an empty egg carton. You will just need to place the coals into a carton and when you are ready to use it, just light the entire carton on fire and that’s it. No rubbish to take home.
Makeshift Night Light
Heading into the night while trying to go to the bathroom while in the woods is pretty daunting and dangerous as well. You don’t want to be running into any nocturnal creatures while trying to relieve yourself. While you may have on a head torch, those things can sometimes prove to be a nuisance as well.
So what you want to do is strap that torch onto a gallon of water. Make sure the light is facing against the bottle. You will see the entire bottle light up, making it seem like a night light. Now, you can simply carry it along or keep in in the tent for some reading.
Easy Carry Candles
This little hack can either act as practical or just purely decorative for a romantic night out. Grab a bunch of candles and drill a hole at the bottom. Next, stick a stick up the hole and melt it shut so it fits snugly. It might sound like quite the operation, but believe us, this works!
What you can do here is that you can place them in areas that are too dark or perhaps to create a pathway. Or, if you are with your partner, you can create a lovely atmosphere surround the campground. Alternatively, you can even use them to carry around when you explore in the dark.