Going camping? Let Rugged Standard set you up with a rip-roaring good time with this camping checklist.
In this article:
- Note: The Legal Stuff First
- Essential Outdoor Wear
- Important Gear for Camping Checklist
- Cooking Equipment and Supplies
- Survival Tools and Emergency Equipment
- The Cool But Optional Stuff
Tame the Great Outdoors with This Master Camping List
Note: The Legal Stuff First
Although no primitive man ever needed a permit to do stuff, there’s a reason why the government regulates camping, fishing, hunting, building fires, and the like. It’s to better care for the environment and to control the expenditure of natural resources in the wild. It’s a must to square these things off by getting the right licenses at the outset instead of having a park ranger put a damper on your camping fun later on.
Essential Outdoor Wear
Get yourself a 60L to 85L hiking backpack that is durable, comfortable, has a lot of pockets and compartments, and one which distributes the load evenly for easier hiking.
2. Dry Bag
The dry bag is to keep your electronics dry, in case of rain or times when you might have to cross wet terrain.
A smaller bag is ideal if you plan to do some exploring away from your campsite.
4. Hiking Wear
You need to use the right protective wear depending on the season you plan to camp.
5. Winter or Cold Weather Gear
Buying the right coats, thermal underwear, and layers will help if you’re planning to go someplace cold.
6. Sleeping Outfits
Outdoor gear may not help you get some quality sleep, so pack some sleeping clothes like pajamas, tank tops, and socks.
7. Hiking Shoes
The rough terrain will test the durability of your shoes so opt for outdoor hiking shoes for camping. Your urban footwear will not last out there in the wild.
8. Rain Gear
The weather may change suddenly so you need to come prepared for rain. This is to keep you from getting sick. Who wants to run a fever while away from civilization?
9. Mesh Laundry Bag
You need a laundry bag to separate your used clothes from your fresh ones.
10. Extra Underwear
Accidents can happen when you’re out there, so it’s better to have some extra boxers or briefs on hand.
Important Gear for Camping Checklist
11. Tent and Cord
Your home away from home. Make sure you get a durable one that can also easily be propped up.
12. Ground Tarp
Tarps are useful to cover your tent from the rain or as reinforcement for your tent footprint.
13. Sleeping Bag
A nice, cozy sleeping bag will help you sleep like a baby, even if you’re not sleeping in your own bed.
14. Tent Pillow
Your sleeping bag should have one, but if not make sure you don’t leave home without a tent pillow.
15. Stakes and Mallet
Make sure you pack some extra stakes to avoid improvising when you’re at camp. Of course, you need a mallet to secure those stakes.
16. Camping Cot
When you don’t like sleeping on the ground, a camping cot will serve as a good substitute for a bed.
17. Tent Footprint
A tent footprint will protect the bottom part of your tent from wear and tear as it comes into contact with the ground.
18. Camping Chairs
You can buy portable ones to fold and then attach to your backpack.
Cooking Equipment and Supplies
19. Clean Potable Water
It’s much better if you find a portable water jug which filters and cleans water for you. But if you aren’t bringing a jug, make sure you bring water you can drink.
If you can’t use any of the wood where you’re going, you might as well buy ones from the hardware store to fuel up your firepit.
21. Cooler with Ice
You can use this to keep your food or your beer cold.
It’s great when you need to start fires to keep warm or to cook food.
23. Pots, Dutch Ovens, Pans
We know you’re in no short supply of campfire cooking skills, but the right cookware does help you get things done.
24. Pot Holder
Use a pot holder to protect your hands from the hot metal of the cookware.
25. Camping Stove
You can choose either a wood-burning or gas stove to use for cooking in the outdoors.
26. Can Opener
In case you plan to bring some canned food, you’ll definitely need one of these.
27. Plates and Utensils
Get bowls and just a spoon and a fork, if you want to keep things minimal.
You’ll want something stainless steel and double-walled to last you through many camping trips.
29. Coffee Pot
If you turn into a grizzly bear without coffee, don’t go out without this and a stash of your supply.
30. Bear-Resistant Food Containers
If you don’t mind sharing food with wildlife, then, by all means, don’t use them.
31. Garbage Bags
As the saying goes, leave only footprints and take nothing but pictures. Make sure you pack your non-biodegradables with you in garbage bags.
32. Aluminum Foil
You can cover food you don’t want to cook over direct heat in foil or simply use this to seal away leftovers.
33. Biodegradable Dishwashing Soap
Make sure the soap you’re using isn’t leaving adding something toxic and harmful into the environment.
34. Portable Sink
For washing dishes.
35. Toothpaste and Toothbrush
You may be in the wilderness but don’t forget to take care of your teeth.
36. Hand Towel
For those smaller cleaning and drying jobs.
You’ll need this to dry yourself faster.
38. Biodegradable Soap
Again, make sure you bring something which doesn’t leave any toxic traces.
39. Hand Disinfectant
Cleanliness will keep you healthy, especially while you’re outdoors. You just don’t know what kind of germs and bacteria you may come into contact with.
For cleaning and drying stuff.
41. Hand Trowel
You’ll need this trowel to dig up a cathole you can crap in.
42. Mosquito or Insect Repellent
Mosquitoes can pass on viruses like malaria through their bites. You can avoid a number of diseases by using repellent to keep them away.
Camping time is a great opportunity to catch some Vitamin D, but too much of a good thing can be harmful. Use sunblock to protect yourself from too many UV rays.
44. Camp Shower
It’s basically a hanging shower curtain you can use to cover yourself while bathing.
Survival Tools and Emergency Equipment
45. First-Aid Kit
You and your friends and family can get injuries from accidents so it’s best to be prepared for any untoward incidents with a first-aid kit. Also, you need to make sure that your kit contains medicines for common ailments like pain, diarrhea, headaches, etc. before you leave home.
The wonders of technology now allow us to triangulate our positions better through GPS. Use a GPS tracking kit to understand where you are using a phone and avoid getting lost out there in the wild.
47. Flashlight with Extra Batteries
A flashlight can be a lifesaver in the dark. Don’t leave home without one.
Of course, you’ll need lighting for your camp. This will also dissuade any animals from unnecessarily wandering into your campsite.
49. Swiss Army Knife
You’ll need a multipurpose tool like this knife when you’re out there, and you’ll be thankful you have one handy for the times you need to cut something with a knife or scissors or uncork a bottle.
50. Emergency Blanket
It’s important when you need something to fend off the cold and you’re isolated somewhere.
51. Map and Compass
The GPS is a nifty device, but when your device is out of battery power, you’ll be glad you have a map and a compass with you.
52. Signal Mirror
A signal mirror is just the size of a pocket mirror but you can use its long and short flashes to communicate with people via Morse Code.
53. Fire Starter
Aside from matches, fire starters are great tools you can use to help you start a fire just in case you get lost.
Binoculars are great to help you view objects from afar. You can use binoculars to better understand your position on a map.
55. Water Purification Tablets
When you get lost, the lack of clean drinking water can worsen a dire situation. You can use these tablets to clean water you encounter outdoors.
56. Trail Mix
Trail mix won’t spoil quickly, so it’s something you can just grab and go to use as sustenance for the long trek ahead.
57. Bear Spray
In case you haven't seen it, another hunter was attacked by a grizzly bear last week. He and his hunting partner were able to ward off the bears using bear spray. https://t.co/y2XNFb0Ar8
— Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation (@RMEF) October 20, 2018
It’s best to avoid bears altogether, or to make noise and stay in groups if you sense one around. When all else fails and one comes at you, it’s best to use a bear spray as your last line of defense. You need to carry the spray in a holster and not in your pack for more effective use.
The Cool But Optional Stuff
58. Fishing Rod and Lures
Camping and fishing go hand-in-hand. Make sure you have the proper permits if you decide to catch your meal this way.
59. Solar Battery Charger
Although it’s not ideal to bring your phone or device with you, there are times you’ll need them for emergency purposes. A solar battery charger will be useful if using gadgets is in order.
You can bring a Kindle to finally read that novel or actually buy a paperback and bring it with you.
A hammock is always a welcome addition to any camp, so bring one if there’s room.
The wild can be rough on audio-visual equipment but a GoPro can take what the outdoors will dish out. It’s great to carry one with you to capture the memories of your trip.
Who doesn’t like catching those nice aerial views? Make memories of your trip more monumental by capturing the awesome landscape of the place you’re camping via a drone.
Check out this camping drone footage from Overland Life:
We’ve assembled the ultimate camping list to make your trip a safe and a great one. You can remove some inessentials, like the ones in the Cool But Optional section, if you want a more basic camping checklist. Remember to bring your wits about you and to trust your senses when you go into the wilderness. The things in this list are just stuff, but ultimately it’s your resourcefulness, good sense, and good instincts which will help you trump the wild.
What do you think about this camping checklist? Do you need other kinds of lists for outdoor activities like say a camping food checklist? Write your answers in the comments section below.