Luke Austin’s Favorite Camping Tips Might Make Your Next Trip More Enjoyable
If you love to pack up the car and head into the woods for some camping as much as I do, you've probably picked up a few tricks along the way. Here are a few simple tips I have been using for a while that can make your trip a little more comfortable
These tips won't change your life(or maybe they will), but they can make a few things in your everyday camp life more simple.
1. Flannel pillowcases
This may sound crazy, especially during the warm summer months, but it serves a purpose. If you’ve ever woke up in the woods covered in dew you know how uncomfortable it can be, and flannel pillowcases are the answer. Waking up without a pillow covered in dew that feels cold and wet is a much better way to start your day.
2. Scissors to easily cut and prepare food
Another one that may sound crazy, but you can thank my Grandfather for starting this one in my household. When preparing your meat(trimming fat, cutting into smaller pieces, etc.) using a good pair of scissors can save you a lot of time and energy. And when it's time to eat, using scissors is much more efficient than trying to use a steak knife. How many times have you torn up your paper plate trying to cut through a piece of chicken or steak on your lap? I recommend the orange handle 'Fiskars' brand that can be found in the craft/sewing department at Walmart). And yes, I use scissors to cut meat and other food at home too. Don't knock it till you try it.
3. Recycle bathroom-tissue rolls to use as firestarter logs
Everyone loves to start the first fire of the camping trip, so much so that there's usually a competition on my trips to see who gets to start it. When it's my turn, I use empty toilet paper rolls stuffed with dryer lint to get the fire ripping right away. You can stuff about three used rolls into each other and then cram as much dryer lint into them as possible. Then just wrap them in newspaper or something similar and you have free, homemade fire starters.
4. Toss some glowsticks in your cooler
If you've ever juggled a flashlight and a cooler lid trying to find one of the last Saranacs in a sea of soda and light beer in the dark, this one is great. Just add a glowstick or two at dusk. The sticks light up the cooler making your life way easier, and the cold of the cooler will keep the glowsticks going all night long.
5. Utilize your local dollar store
Finally, don’t forget that you can stock your camping supplies extremely cheap. You can get things like paper plates, paper towels, garbage bags, food storage bags, containers and cooking utensils for just $1. Since camping runs the risk of ruining most of these items, why not get them on the cheap? Don't forget batteries too. 16 AAA batteries are only $2 compared to paying almost 4 times that much for a name brand pack of 8, and they will last at least the duration of your trip.
I should note that I generally ‘car-camp,’ meaning I load up the car and park it on a site in a state park. Some of these tips may work for backpackers too, so feel free to try them out if you have room in your pack.