Master Camping Checklist

Finally, a camping checklist for the rest of us. No matter how many times you head out for an adventure, you’re bound to forget something every once in a while. The last thing you want to have to do is tell your family or friends “I forgot the tent…” which happened to me after spending a grueling day hiking to the top of Mt. Whitney.

Most checklists are very exhaustive, which can be nice for the multi-family expedition, but I find them cumbersome. I prepared this checklist for those of us who enjoy spending more time in nature than setting up string lights to illuminate the carpeted camp area. It is prioritized and many items can easily be packed in a box and forgotten until the next trip.

If you’re missing any of the items below, or just want a recommendation on what to buy, I’ve included handy links to some items that I prefer and have lots of experience with.

I’ve included a link below to a printable version to keep handy while getting ready.

Tent Camping and Comfort

  • Tent (with stakes and lines)
  • Sleeping Bag
  • Sleeping Pad / Air Mattress
  • Pillow / Headrest
  • Camping Chairs
  • Tarp (2)

Camping Tools

  • Camp Knife
  • Camp Shovel
  • Camp Saw
  • Hatchet
  • Mallet

Camping Essentials

  • Firestarter
  • Matches or Lighters
  • Lanterns & Flashlights with spare batteries
  • Rope, Paracord, or Cordage
  • Leather Gloves
  • Wash Basin / Bucket

Personal Outdoor Items

  • Water Bottle / Canteen
  • Adequate Clothing Layers
  • Warm Gloves
  • Hat
  • Sunglasses
  • Hiking Boots
  • Backpack (hiking essentials)

Camp Kitchen Essentials

  • Campfire Grate or Camping Stove with Propane
  • Pot(s) with lid
  • Can / Bottle Opener
  • Cup(s) & Bowl(s)
  • Cooking Utensils
  • Eating Utensils
  • Salt & Pepper, Spices
  • Trash Bags
  • Ziploc Bags
  • Paper Towels

Personal Care

  • Toilet Paper
  • Tooth Brushes and Tooth Paste
  • Sunscreen / Lip Balm
  • Wet Wipes
  • Soap and Shampoo
  • Insect Repellent

Just in Case

  • First Aid Kit
  • Water Filter
  • Extra Batteries
  • Bungee Cords
  • Duct Tape
  • Basic Vehicle Tools
  • Spare Fuel

Camping with Pets

  • Food for Pets
  • Collapsible Bowl
  • Blankets or Bedding

With that you have a great Camping Essentials Checklist to get your trip started. Don’t forget to bring along some fun gear for fishing, hiking, rock hounding, or whatever other fun adventure awaits you on your trip.

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