July has come and gone, leaving us with precious little of the summer season. And for those whose hearts belong to the great outdoors, this means one thing: it’s time to pack up the car and head to the woods.
But anyone can pitch a tent and twiddle their thumbs for a few days. If you want to get the most out of your summer, check out our tips for taking your camping trip to the next level.
Upgrade Your Gear
When people think of camping, their thoughts often go to the basics, such as a tent, a sleeping bag, and maybe a cooler filled with drinks. But just because you’re roughing it, that doesn’t mean you have to get along without other supplies. Try buffing up your gear with these essentials:
- A large hard shell tent for weatherproof camping
- A portable shower
- A camp stove for hot meals
- A telescope or binoculars for stargazing or bird watching
- A pair of good-quality hiking boots
Also, keep in mind that technology doesn’t have to be at odds with nature. Bring along your Bluetooth speaker to jam at the site or a camera to capture local wildlife. Just make sure to put them in watertight containers.
Scope Out the Locale
We know—when you think of “ways to take your camping trip to the next level,” your thoughts don’t turn to logistical tips like this one. But a big reason people miss out on opportunities when they’re camping is that they don’t know those opportunities are there.
Before you go to your park or preserve, familiarize yourself with all the trails available and see if they have things like canoe or kayak rentals. And don’t be afraid to chat with locals when you arrive to learn about the locations you might not find online.
Take It Off-Road
Hiking trails and country roads offer incredible views. But if you want to blaze a trail, you have to leave the established one behind.
Taking your trip off-road comes with its own challenges, though. You have to outfit your vehicle with the suspension and tires necessary to handle rough terrain. And you need to learn the essential skills, such as how to drive over rocky ground and use recovery equipment. But the reward is well worth the challenge for those willing to take it.
Summer doesn’t last forever, but that doesn’t mean we can’t savor every opportunity we have to enjoy it now. Whether you’re off-roading in the mud or sitting beside a campfire, embrace every moment to create memories that will keep you warm even when summer ends.