Sleeping in a tent may sound like a lot of fun, but if you’re not prepared, the first experience may not be as positive as you expect. As a prepper and a camper, you need to know how to adapt to the environment to make the most out of it, but you also should know the gear to bring from home.
If you’re interested, below I listed some of the behaviors and items that made my life a lot easier while camping.
The Sleeping Bag
This is a must-have for any camper or prepper out there! If you go camping with the family, every member of your group should have their own sleeping bag, fitted towards their needs and size.
The good news is that there is a multitude of designs and models on the market, so you can have your pick. From bags designed to keep you warm during summer time to ones that will keep you snug when the blizzard is roaring outside, there is a version for everyone!
Now, depending on your type of camping trip (backpack or car), you should also pay attention to weight, size, and shape (standard or mummy).
Choose a Good Tent Site
The place where you install the tent is crucial to your quality of sleep! Select a piece of flat terrain, without branches, roots, or stones and check for any insect trails (ants, bugs, and so on). You should also avoid placing the tent under old trees because there is the risk of branches breaking in case of windy weather.
One way to make the tent more comfortable is to bring an air bed or a self-inflating sleeping pad. These create a layer of insulation between you and the ground and keep any roots or rocks away from your ribs.
Peter Branki from BestMattress.io says it’s best to get an air mattress than a sleeping pad because you’ll be better protected from the cold and you’ll have better back support. Most modern air mattresses are designed with several air chambers, so in case of puncture, you’ll still be able to use it. Even more, you can adjust the firmness as needed.
However, the air bed is bulkier than the pad and heavier. So, you should make sure it fits your bag before choosing between the two.
You should organize the inside of your tent well before dark. This way, you can relax during the evening and allow your body to get sleepy and comfy in the new setting.
Start by removing any food from the tent- besides the fact that it can spoil overnight, and the smell will be annoying, it also attracts feral life. Believe me, you wouldn’t want to wake up with a fox (or a bear) in your tent!
Next, make sure you wear the right clothes. Your night attire should be light, dry and breathable. Since you’ll have the sleeping bag to keep you warm, there’s no need to overdress. Also, reduce fluid intake after 9 pm so you won’t have to go out in the middle of the night.
Still, you might need to go to the bathroom during the night, so prepare accordingly: always leave a pair of shoes outside the tent and have a headlamp handy. Prepare the necessary toiletries and plan ahead so you won’t get confused by the trees.
At the end of the day, camping is all about relaxation and getting in touch with nature, so it would be nice if you didn’t strive to bring the comfort of your bed at home into the woods. Learn to sleep under the starry sky and you’ll learn how it feels to be truly free!
Michael Crowder enjoys testing new gadgets for survival and the outdoors is his second home. His father was the reason why Michael got into prepping and learning how to stay off the grid.