It’s easy to get overwhelmed with the motions of things, especially when you’re handling kids on a camping trip. Hopefully, this guide can lighten the load.
Raising kids also means raising contingencies. As a parent, one rule you live by is to always be prepared, something you share in common with scouts. Slacking off will be a luxury, because as the adult who’s in charge of packing up and preparing for camping trips, apart from the essentials, you’ll be needing some of these must-haves for camping with kids.
First aid kit
Bring bandages, tweezers, the funny-looking scissors—the whole enchilada. You cannot afford to skimp on this, we swear. On the contrary, add more to the kit like medicine and whistles for emergencies.
Sitting on the ground might be a bit too messy to clean up afterwards, so let your children sit and lie down a mat instead. This way, they’ll have plenty more things to do on the ground as opposed to when they’re just lying on fresh dirt where bugs and ants might crawl up them. Tent tarps provide an extra layer of protection between a camping tent floor and the elements.
It’s also a good idea to bring this when you’re out eating. Crumbs might attract other, bigger animals, so the option of laying something over the ground can let you clean up better.
True parents know the frustration of kids downright refusing to wash their hands or take a bath. The simplest solution is to use baby wipes and antibacterial wipes, which are considered to be one of the best inventions in America. They clean up easily, and they can be thrown right away in the trash after use.
Perhaps the only bad thing about this blessing is that there never seems to be enough of it. Load up on several packs each time you take your children out camping. Water can be hard to come by in when you’re left no alternatives to boondocking, which is fun on its own, but can be a nightmare at the worst of times.
Staying outdoors is all fun and games until there are little dark marks running over your kid’s skin. These bug bites are itchy, and will make your child irritable. Avoid this by stocking up on bug spray.
Mosquitoes especially swarm in on your kids like they’re steak with legs, which, to insects, they probably are. As much as possible, do not forget to bring bug repellent. Let your children wear those patches with cartoons on them that smell nice, or the plastic bracelets that ward away these bloodsucking insects.
Whatever the weather of the season, bring some SPF, and lather the lotion on your bodies. On high ground, you might not be able to tell how hot it really is. Nursing sunburns is not fun, so it’s much easier to prevent this with sunscreen.
If you do get burns, pack up on ointments like sun gel, which does enough on the skin to heal quickly.
There must be little compromise: Your kids need to have plenty of food. On long drives or on high trails, they will be needing the energy to keep up.
Scratch that. We meant to say, bring extra everything! In previous articles we pointed out that overpacking would be adding more weight to the baggage and might consequently do more harm than good. But to ease the anxiety you’ll be facing with regards to the trip, it won’t hurt to bring at least three times as many clothes as you need, especially for children.
Weather forecasts can’t be trusted 100% of the time, either, so prepare more raincoats and woolen clothes for your young campers.
Blanket, pillow, or stuffed animal
We all know about that special “thing” your kid never sleeps without. Whether it’s a blanket, pillow, or stuffed animal, your child will sleep a lot easier having it around. Don’t leave home without the beloved item, or it will cost you a night of no sleep.
In that case, it’s good to improvise and wrap some towels around to form an appropriate shape. The makeshift doll could be enough to distract your kid from their missing favorite.
While there are loads more you can bring, we’ve just about skimmed everything parents must have for camping with kids. At the end of the day, you’re responsible for choosing the right stuff to pack up since you know your children better inside out. So, when it’s time to leave and come back home, pat yourself on the back and say you did a great job.