Portable Solar Panels for Camping

Camping is a lot of fun, but in the 21st century it is hard for many of us to go without our electronic gadgets. We know that the batteries will never last for the whole trip, and we therefore fret about being without our electronic gizmos while we are out in the woods. Luckily, there is a smart solution for this problem. You can enjoy all of your electronic devices for the duration of your trip when you bring along portable solar panels for camping.

Take Power with You Anywhere

One of the best things about portable solar panels is that you can take them with your anywhere. Because they are so lightweight and portable, you can hike with them deep into the backcountry. You can set up your campsite with all the electronic gadgets you need for your camping trip.

For example, most of us use digital cameras to take our photographs these days. The only problem with digital cameras is that the batteries can run out quickly. Instead of having to buy a whole bunch of batteries to take with you on your camping trip, you can make the much more environmentally responsible choice of using portable solar panels to recharge your batteries.

Another way you can use them is to charge your GPS device. A GPS device is very handy to have with you when you are camping. You will never have to worry about getting lost when you have GPS guidance to help you navigate your way through the wilderness. When you bring along a portable solar panel to charge your GPS device, you never have to worry about it running out of power while you are deep in the woods.

The Eco-Friendly Choice

One of the most common ways people keep their electronic devices running when they are out in the woods is to bring along a lot of spare batteries. This is not the environmentally sound decision. The manufacturing of batteries is not the most eco-friendly process, and they are a nightmare to throw away due to their toxicity.

Instead of adding to the waste that is clogging our landfills, you should make the eco-conscious choice to charge your devices with solar panels when you are camping. This will allow you to only bring one battery along for every electronic device you bring with you. It will save you the hassle of packing a ton of batteries, and it will ease your conscience by allowing you to make the environmentally friendly decision.

Harness the Power of the Sun

Using the sun to power your devices is the smartest decision you can make. It is good for the environment, and it assures you that you will always have all the power you need while you are out in the woods. Whether you want to charge your phone, GPS device or portable DVD player, you can get all the energy you need with portable solar panels for camping. They are the smart choice for campers everywhere.

Author Andrew Womble writes for RealSmart.co.au. You can find him on Google+

Win Cutter Insect Repellents

Cutter Insect Repellent Giveaway

This giveaway is sponsored by Cutter. They provided a bundle of products for us to use and review and are providing one of our readers with a fabulous bundle too!

Win Cutter Insect RepellentsAre you ready to go camping? Grab your tent and food. We’ll supply the bug spray.

Thanks to Cutter, we’re giving away $55 worth of bug repellents that will help you enjoy summer bite-free. You’ll get citronella candles, a yard fogger, backyard spray, personal repellents and more. These items will cover your backyard, your patio and your next camping or hiking trip!

See How We Used Our Cutter Products!

Earlier this week we had a backyard party… just our family and my little sister. We made chili dogs and s’mores and had a blast! Read about it: Summer Protection from Cutter Insect Repellants

Want to learn more about Cutter products?

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Enter to Win this Huge Bundle of Cutter Products!

This giveaway will include:

  • Cutter Skinsations Insect Repellent Pump Spray, 6 oz.
  • Cutter Dry Insect Repellent Aerosol, 4 oz.
  • Cutter Backwoods Insect Repellent Aerosol, 4 oz.
  • Cutter Backyard Bug Control Spray Concentrate, 32 fl. oz.
  • Cutter Backyard Bug Control Outdoor Fogger, 16 oz.
  • Cutter CitroGuard™ Triple Wick Candle, 20 oz.
  • Cutter CitroGuard™ Bucket Candle, 17 oz.
  • Cutter CitroGuard™ Candle, 11 oz. red
  • Cutter Scented Citronella Outdoor Candle, 11 oz. Vanilla & Lavender
  • Cutter Natural Insect Repellent Pump Spray, 6 fl. oz.

How to Win

Use the Rafflecopter form below to earn up to 10 entries in this giveaway.
Giveaway ends June 7th at 12:am and a winner will be randomly chosen and contacted. The winner will have 24 hours to respond. If the winner does not respond another name will be drawn.

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Guys Go Camping: Tips for Camping on a Slope

Tips for Camping on a Slope

While it is easiest to camp on flat ground, sometimes camping on sloped ground is inevitable. Sloped ground, embankments, hills, and mountainous terrain are not the friendliest areas for camping, but with a few tips and tricks, you can make the most of the angled ground and still enjoy yourself.

Guys Go Camping: Tips for Camping on a Slope

Photo by JJ Harrison 2010

Follow these tips to stay safe and comfortable on any sloped ground:

Choosing the Right Location

If you have a choice, set up your campground on the south side of the hill in colder months and the north side in warmer months. The south side of a hill has less wind chill, and the north side is cooler.

Pitch your campsite as close to the top of the hill as you can get, unless it is extremely windy. Pitch the campsite close to the bottom of the hill if the area is dry and windy.

Make sure your slope is not in the direct path of water flow or a creek. This can be a disaster when it rains because your tent will get flooded or completely washed down the hill.

Pitching the Tent

Position your tent so that the opening sits perpendicular to the slope of the hill. That way, if you do slip down inside the tent at night, you will run into the wall, rather than fall out the door.

Dig a small trench around your tent to catch any water that rolls down the hill and you will stay much drier if it rains. [Editors Note, best not to disturb the land if possible. But let safety dictate your actions.]

Position your head at the top of the slope and your feet at the bottom. Propping pillows and other elevating cushions under your feet can help prevent rolling and slipping. Place your sleeping bed as far up the slope as possible inside the tent because you will slide down some during the night.

Dealing with the Slope

Look for flat areas surrounding your sloped campsite. If possible, set up your camping equipment on a flat area. The top of the hill or the valley below the hill are better locations for fires and furniture.

If moving your equipment is not an option, bring equipment with adjustable legs. Many camping tables, chairs, stoves, and other accessories come with adjustable legs.

Use pieces of cardboard, bark, pieces of wood, sticks, or whatever else you can find to prop up your equipment.

Just because you are camped on a slope does not mean you will have a miserable camping experience. Use these tips to help make your sloped camping experience comfortable and fun.

How do you deal with hills or slopes while camping? 

Pack In, Pack Out


We’ve all been taught not to litter. At least in the United States there have been several major public initiatives to counter the onslaught of littering along road ways. And while many folks will never litter, there are some who’s lack of respect for their world and fellow residents causes them to just not give a damn and throw trash all over the place.

In 2009 there were over 51 billion pieces of trash thrown beside US byways. We spent nearly $11.5 billion in clean up initiatives. If you’d like the gory details, check out the 2009 National Visible Litter Survey… I’ve not taken the time to look for more current statistics, but you can imagine they’ve grown.

While littering along roads is bad, it’s contained geographically enough for society to at least attempt a clean up. The impact that littering would have on America’s back country, parks, and wildlife would be far greater.

If you’ve been involved with experienced campers or hikers you’re probably familiar with the concept of Leave No Trace, or at the least the idea of Pack It In, Pack It Out. These concepts became necessary during the post World War II era.

Prior to WWII American the outdoors man focused on woodsman ship and conservation. We didn’t have access to the plethora of man-made materials that we do today. Packed lunches were wrapped in paper, packs were made of cloth or leathers which would decompose somewhat naturally if left on the land, and anything else was constructed from the resources found in nature.

After the war ended and the strange reintegration of society had finally completed, families became one again, expanded most often, and “benefited” from the excess materials produced by the war time manufacturing machine. Nylon, Rayon and other man-made materials began appearing in consumer products. Plastics soon eased the work load of housewives everywhere packing lunches and weekend pick-nicks.

$1,000 Littering FineAmericans also began rediscovering an affinity for the outdoors. But unlike their fathers, these Americans trudged out into the wild bringing the trappings of the modern age. Items so foreign to the natural world that nature literally doesn’t know what to do with them.

The onslaught of litter that followed raised the ire of many a conservationist. Soon individuals began teaching new principles of conservation. The idea was simple, since the material being brought in couldn’t be handled by nature, you must carry out what you brought in.

My first introduction to the idea of pack in, pack out, was during my teen years as I started mountain biking. The MTB community is incredibly conservation minded. It appeared to me, at the time thinking in very black and white, to be a strange juxtaposition. Here were folks bringing destructive bicycles into nature, riding them at great speed on trails sometimes barely wide enough to walk down, yet if you were seen littering you’d vary likely be taunted and driven out of the woods by pure peer pressure.

What I leaned from that community of bikers was, nature is meant to be enjoyed but fearlessly protected. Yes the bikes would erode the trails fast, but the bikers would rebuild the trails. Yes the temptation was there to take your bike off through the woods, off the trails, but you just didn’t; you stayed on the trails to protect those inviting woods. And you sure as hell packed out everything you brought in, period.

Today, the need to pack out what we pack in is still important, perhaps more so than ever before. Fortunately, there are concerted education efforts on going by many organizations which teach adults and children alike how to enjoy nature while keeping it safe.

The Leave No Trace campaign, is probably the best known public outreach offering guidance and courses on conservation and principles for leaving a light foot print on nature.

Their seven principles are what I try to follow and think you should as well.

Plan Ahead and Prepare

  • Know the regulations and special concerns for the area you’ll visit.
  • Prepare for extreme weather, hazards, and emergencies.
  • Schedule your trip to avoid times of high use.
  • Visit in small groups when possible. Consider splitting larger groups into smaller groups.
  • Repackage food to minimize waste.
  • Use a map and compass to eliminate the use of marking paint, rock cairns or flagging.

Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces

  • Durable surfaces include established trails and campsites, rock, gravel, dry grasses or snow.
  • Protect riparian areas by camping at least 200 feet from lakes and streams.
  • Good campsites are found, not made. Altering a site is not necessary.
  • In popular areas:
  • Concentrate use on existing trails and campsites.
  • Walk single file in the middle of the trail, even when wet or muddy.
  • Keep campsites small. Focus activity in areas where vegetation is absent.
  • In pristine areas:
  • Disperse use to prevent the creation of campsites and trails.
  • Avoid places where impacts are just beginning.

Dispose of Waste Properly

  • Pack it in, pack it out. Inspect your campsite and rest areas for trash or spilled foods. Pack out all trash, leftover food and litter.
  • Deposit solid human waste in catholes dug 6 to 8 inches deep, at least 200 feet from water, camp and trails. Cover and disguise the cathole when finished.
  • Pack out toilet paper and hygiene products.
  • To wash yourself or your dishes, carry water 200 feet away from streams or lakes and use small amounts of biodegradable soap. Scatter strained dishwater.

Leave What You Find

  • Preserve the past: examine, but do not touch cultural or historic structures and artifacts.
  • Leave rocks, plants and other natural objects as you find them.
  • Avoid introducing or transporting non-native species.
  • Do not build structures, furniture, or dig trenches.

Minimize Campfire Impacts

  • Campfires can cause lasting impacts to the backcountry. Use a lightweight stove for cooking and enjoy a candle lantern for light.
  • Where fires are permitted, use established fire rings, fire pans, or mound fires.
  • Keep fires small. Only use sticks from the ground that can be broken by hand.
  • Burn all wood and coals to ash, put out campfires completely, then scatter cool ashes.

Respect Wildlife

  • Observe wildlife from a distance. Do not follow or approach them.
  • Never feed animals. Feeding wildlife damages their health, alters natural behaviors, and exposes them to predators and other dangers.
  • Protect wildlife and your food by storing rations and trash securely.
  • Control pets at all times, or leave them at home.
  • Avoid wildlife during sensitive times: mating, nesting, raising young, or winter.

Be Considerate of Other Visitors

  • Respect other visitors and protect the quality of their experience.
  • Be courteous. Yield to other users on the trail.
  • Step to the downhill side of the trail when encountering pack stock.
  • Take breaks and camp away from trails and other visitors.
  • Let nature’s sounds prevail. Avoid loud voices and noises.

– See more at: http://lnt.org/learn/7-principles#sthash.l4cemn0r.dpuf

The member-driven Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics teaches people how to enjoy the outdoors responsibly. This copyrighted information has been reprinted with permission from the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics: www.LNT.org

Camping Etiquette: Camping with Friends

by Philip Welles about 1957

by Philip Welles about 1957

Have you ever been camping with someone who ignored all rules of common decency and shirked all responsibility? Perhaps that person rusted your cast iron skillet or neglected to clean up their trash at the end of the trip.

Short of vowing never to camp with that person again, there is little you can do to prevent others from taking advantage of you. However, you can make sure you are not the one that others grumble about after you go to bed each night by ensuring you obey the following etiquette rules for camping with others:

Divide the responsibilities in advance

Divide the responsibilities of camping before you go. Assign tasks to each camper, such as who is in charge of which meal, who will bring which tools and equipment, and who will be responsible for bringing activities. Advanced planning will help prevent arguments and relationship strains. When everyone has a plan, the time together is more enjoyable for all.

Assign daily chores

Certain tasks, like disposing of trash, cooking meals, gathering wood, building a fire, and cleaning up after meals occur every day. Assign a few tasks to each person per day. Make sure the same person is not stuck with the same job each day. No one wants to have to clean up the dishes after every meal.

Establish a campsite schedule and boundaries

Find out what each person expects from the trip. Some campers may want to arise early and get started with the day. Others may wish to enjoy a leisurely-paced morning before major activities occur. Set up boundaries for sleeping, a loose schedule outline, and a daily quiet time, if necessary.

Show respect to other campers

When you share a space with other campers, it is important to respect their personal space and equipment. Never use someone else’s tools, equipment, or food without asking. Do not enter other’s tents or personal areas. This will prevent crowding and allow everyone to experience downtime, if they wish.

Maintain a clean campsite

In addition to following basic campsite rules and regulations, keep your campsite clean. Dispose of trash immediately, and respect the plants and wildlife surrounding your campsite. Show your fellow campers respect by keeping your equipment and space tidy throughout the trip.

Following these basic camping etiquette rules will go a long way toward making your camping experience enjoyable for everyone.

Have you ever camped with a disrespectful camper? How did you deal with the experience?

Camping Etiquette 101

By Rick McCharles

photo by Rick McCharles

There is more to camping than simply packing up some gear and building a fire in the country. Most campgrounds have both written and non-written rules and regulations that make camping more fun for everyone. Make sure you follow these basic camping rules next time you head into the wilderness!

Obey ground rules

This is the first rule of camping etiquette. If your established campground has official rules, make sure you follow them. Many sites have rules about quiet hours, trash and waste disposal, permitted activities, pet control, and more. Always follow these rules above all.

Think like a Boy Scout

One of the goals of the Boy Scouts is to leave an area cleaner than how they found it. This should be your camping policy as well. Try to improve every campsite you visit by cleaning up trash and leaving wood for the next visitors.

 Protect the water

A campground water source is important. Never dump any chemicals or waste products into the water, and if you use the water for bathing or cleaning, only use bio-degradable cleaners to keep water and wildlife healthy.

 Dispose of trash properly

Nothing is uglier than bits of trash strewn all over a campsite. Secure all trash carefully away from pets, wild animals, and wind. Take all non bio-degradable trash with you, or dispose of it into designated receptacles. Bury all other trash several inches below the ground, unless otherwise specified by campground rules.

 Keep fires safe

Fire can spread faster than many people realize, especially during dry weather. It is extremely important to follow fire safety rules to avoid creating wildfires. Always fence in your fire with rocks. Remove all grass and other flammable materials within a 12 to 24-inch diameter around the perimeter of the fire. Never leave a fire unattended, even at night. Ensure the fire is extinguished when you leave by dousing it with water and spreading the coals.

 Respect the environment

Leave as little impact on the campsite as possible when you camp. Try not to disturb nature or the surrounding wildlife. Leave plants and animals alone, and if you bring your own pet, keep it on a leash to protect the surrounding wildlife.

If you follow these basic camping rules, you will show respect for the campsite, environment, and yourself. Camping is an enjoyable activity for many, and following the rules makes it more enjoyable for everyone involved.

What are your favorite camping etiquette tips?

Choosing Gear for Beginners

There are some essentials you’ll need to take. As you gain experience camping you’ll modify your list to suit your camping style.


kelty-tent-amazonIf you’re primarily camping in cold weather you don’t need to worry about windows, you won’t need them. For everyone else though, the tent you choose should include lots of vent windows. These windows are made out of a tightly woven screen to keep out bugs but allow air flow. Managing air flow is important; during sumer months you’ll want as much free flowing air as you can get, but during winter you’ll want to close those windows to block the wind and hold in heat.

There are two types of window coverings.

  1. Zippered windows sewn into the tent on one side and zippers on the remaining side. This style works great, but the extra material is always attached to the tent which could matter if you get serious about backpacking.
  2. No built in window covers at all. These tents instead rely on the rain fly to cover windows. This is nice on those mid-summer backpack trips where you want to save a few ounces of weight by leaving the rain fly at home.

Rain flies are important for more than just covering your windows. Their primary purpose is to protect the tent from moisture like rain or dew. Even with a light dewing you’ll find that touching the inside of your tent’s wall will cause that moisture to wick inside. But, with the rain fly installed, that moisture collects on the fly leaving the tent wall dry underneath. Some tents include a rain fly that extends out from the tent’s doors allowing you to stow gear outside the tent, but under the fly. This configuration is my favorite. I stow items like chairs, and other gear under the fly leaving more room in the tent.

Sizing a tent can feel misleading. When a manufacture says a tent will sleep three, what they mean to say is it will sleep three 5′ 2″ guys spooning. So, subtract one from the manufacturer’s suggested count and those two guys will be snug, bumping elbows. A manufacture suggested four person tent will sleep two 6′ guys comfortably.

The Kelty Trail Ridge 4 is a great tent for two large guys. Kelty makes a 6 person version of the same model as well.

Sleeping Bag

sleeping-bag-colman-amazonBags are rated for temperature. Pay attention to these ratings because their spot on. Taking a bag rated for 60 degrees on trip in Minnesota in November just might ruin your camping career forever. Likewise a 30 degree bag during July in Texas can have the same effect.

There are two styles; square and mummy. The mummy bag is shaped, just as the name suggests, to be as form fitting as possible. The pros are this means less material so less weight and it will warm up quicker since there’s less air to heat. On the negative side though some folks just can’t stand to be that snug.

The square style far more comfortable (a statement of personal preference if there ever was one). I prefer the square bag for two main reasons:

  1. You don’t feel like you’re in a cocoon,
  2. and you can store your shirt and pants in the bag with you in the winter months so they’re warm in the morning.

The Colman Dunnock is a great starter bag.

Camp Kitchen

The camp kitchen you build will be based on your cooking style. Generally, you should consider including:

  • Camp plates — these are flat dishes with high sides for serving soups, chili and stews.
  • Cups — Tin coffee mugs are a favorite since they’ll handle any beverage you can through in them, even hot coffee.
  • Various utensils — include knives, spoons, forks, serving utensils.
  • Pots and pans — you should have at least one small pot and one fry pan.
  • Camp stove — If you’re going to camp in a burn restricted area, you’ll need a camp stove. These stoves use propane bottles.
  • Soap — Bring some bio-degradable soap.
  • Trash bags — Pack in, pack out is the old adage and you should adhere to it. Bring a sack or two for collecting your camp trash in. Large plastic bags can also be used for rain ponchos.
  • Food — Plan each meal before you go and take exactly what you need.

Camp Furniture

colman-chair-amazonDifferent types of camping allows for different kinds a camp comfort. If you’re camping with easy access to your car, bring along some folding chairs and maybe even folding camp table.
If you’re backpacking then bring a tarp for sitting on.

For those car camping trips I like the canvas folding style chairs like this one from Colman.

First Aid Kit

You don’t have to be a super paramedic, but you should have a decent first aid kit along. Things happen when you least expect it and help is not just a phone call away. If one of your party cuts themselves you need to be able to at least disinfect the wound. Worst case you’ll need to know how to get the wound to clot so they don’t bleed out as you carry them back to civilization.


At the least your first aid kit should include some disinfectant, antibiotic cream and band-aids. You can get a more comprehensive kit fairly cheaply though so purchase the best bang for your buck.  Mountain Series from Adventure Medical Kits are highly recommended kits. Walmart also has some decent kits that will work in a pinch.

Knowing CPR and the Heimlich Maneuver is important as well. Check with your local Red Cross or hospital, they’ll usually have a course or two every year.

Putting it all Together

Experience and common-sense will help you decide what gear to take on your next camping trip. Think about each part of your day, what activities you’ll be doing and the weather. If you plan your trip before hand you’ll have time to enjoy your trip without worry.

Your First Day and Night

Your First Day and Night

In my previous post I wrote that you should not plan your camping trip out in to much detail. That’s true, but conversely you don’t want to be totally unprepared either. There are some tasks that simply have to be done at every camp site. If you’re going with a group of folks, you’ll want to distribute tasks according to your camp-mates’ abilities. The goal with distributing the tasks is to have many tasks being accomplished in parallel so you can start relaxing as soon as possible.

  • Tent Setup
    When setting up a tent you first need to survey the campsite. Choose the smoothest plot you can find and walk over every bit of the land removing sticks and stones. Leaving this debris will give you a rough nights sleep and could possibly puncture your tent’s floor.Depending on your experience, personality and complexity of your tent, you should allow yourself 30 minutes to one hour to get your tent setup. Event the simplest of tents will seem complicated setting it up for the first time. Do not attempt a first setup in the dark. Having an assistant to help setup the tent can be helpful; but you’ll quickly find it takes communication and team work.Traditionally tent raising is the responsibility of the tent owner and possibly an assistant. You might however offer to put up the tent for the person in charge of the meals though.
  • Camp Fire and Meal Preparation
    You need one person in charge of the campfire and meal preparation. If you’ve taken my advice you’ve started with something small like charcoal fire with hot dogs and chips. In that situation you only need one person on this task. Once you’re more experienced and cooking over a wood fire, you might assign several assistants to assign with wood gathering, fire stoking, food prep. etc. But, even with assistance, there should be only one person in charge of meals.
  • Clean Up
    Having a clean camp site is critical for your enjoyment and safety. As you’re cooking keep utensils and dishes out of the dirt and covered. It’s traditional that everyone help clean up after a meal by cleaning their own dishes or assisting the cook in some other way.Left overs should be stored in air tight containers and stowed in your car or suspended high in a tree where wildlife can’t get at it. Extra caution should be taken in bear country, but that’s another post. If you need to dispose of excess food (burnt, leftovers, etc.) do so some distance from the camp site.If you’re at an established camp site there will probably be some restrooms available. Be a good neighbor and make use of these. If you are primitive camping, establish a latrine area at the outset of your camp setup and make sure everyone is aware of it’s location.

The Next Morning

You’ll be surprised at how early the sun comes up the next morning. Rule of thumb, whomever is in charge of breakfast is the first one up and out of the tent. Fire is the first priority since you’ll need it to make coffee and the meal; and possibly to stay warm.

By the time the meal is eaten you’ll find folks break up into work teams naturally. Someone will assist the cook with clean up and the others will move on to prepping the tents for take down.

When prepping your tent, make sure it’s as dry as possible before you start rolling it up. I’ve actually spread a tent out in a sunny spot and waited around for it to dry before rolling it up. If that’s not an option due to time limitation or weather, wring it out as you roll and remember to unpack it when you get home to dry it out. Leaving a tent rolled wet will guarantee mildew which will harm your tent and possibly you the next time you use it.

An Introduction to Camping

First Time for Everything

There’s always a first time for everything and that includes camping. Whether you’re an adult or a young person your first camping trip might feel a little overwhelming. There appears to be a lot of tasks and tools to be considered before trekking into the great out of doors.

I remember my first “camping” trip quite well. I was about 12 and my folks agreed to let my younger brother and I take our tipi inspired tent in the backyard and sleep outside by ourselves. I’m pretty sure we had a couple of flashlights, some books, a canteen of water and some sleeping bags.

Early Camping by Marcia Wright

We were just kids who did what seemed fun; we didn’t put to much thought into our actions. As a new camper you should do the same. To many times new campers get bogged down in trying to plan for every eventuality and “needing” — read wanting — to buy all the coolest gadgets. But that makes camping a chore; chores are not fun!

The instinct to prepare for every eventuality while away from home is a good thing, it helps keep you safe. But new campers need to remind themselves that they simply don’t know what those events will be, they have no experience to dictate for what they should prepare. The key is keep it simple and build on your experience as you go.

  1. Choose your first camping location close to home. If the camp fire just won’t start in the morning you can always just drive home for breakfast, and that’s OK.
  2. Choose simple things for meals. Bring charcoal, bread for toast and sausage links to cook in the camp ground’s provided grill. Do you really expect trying to make pan biscuits and gravy over a wood fire will be “fun” on your first trip? Probably not.
  3. Keep your plans simple. There may be a lake for swimming, trails for hiking, lots of dead trees for gathering firewood, but you’re not going to get to all of those in one day. You will just get frustrated if you try to plan every detail of the day out. Instead, formulate in your mind what tasks will be essential (see below) for providing a safe and happy camp site and make those must do’s happen. Then just let the fun stuff happen as they may.