As they say,
"Camping is where you spend a small fortune to live like a homeless person."
While there are plenty of people who go out into the wilderness with nothing but the clothes on their back and the bare essentials, there are so many people out there who love to be in nature, but also thoroughly enjoy the modern amenities of home. I feel that a well-balanced mix of modern to natural camping serves great purpose to feel comfort and security while "roughing" it in nature.
I have compiled a list of products that I always make sure to pack and recommend to others as perfect gadgets that bridge the gap between your home and tent. These items are to serve as an element of wilderness preparedness. The way I think of it as, is - when you are home: you are comfortable, safe and your mind is at ease. However when you are camping, you are typically surrounded by quite a bit more of the unknown, which could lead to feelings of discomfort, insecurity and stress. Sometimes the way to reach the comfort as you may feel when you are at home, is not necessarily accomplished with a blow-up couch and a solar panel TV, but rather having the right tools for survival and an adequate number of back-up plans to cover the numerous situations you may find yourself in. The goal is not to live like you do at home, but rather, immerse yourself in nature with the right amount of confidence and curiosity.
Our categories for Convenient Camping are as follows:
Elevate your camping game and create a happily organized space with the suggestions below. Thoughtful Explorer is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com, which comes at no additional cost to the consumer. Each product featured has been carefully selected, tested and verified as a suitable recommendation. This is not meant to be an exhaustive list of every single item that I bring with me while camping, but rather, unique and thoughtful items intended to help you on your journey to make the process a little easier.
There is always an added bonus to an item if you can have it serve more than one purpose. When searching for items, I always try to ensure that there is a good balance of both quality and usefulness so that I'm not simply getting a thing with more than one function for the sake of qualifying it as such. I also don't want something to break after a few uses, then run the risk of being down a multitude of tools with a single mishap. A well-built item that accomplishes what it has set out to do is a great find and is a perfect way to have everything you need while camping without having to take too many individual items with you on your journey.
This kit is a perfect set to bring with you to the outdoors. Provides a person with much needed items when camping, looking to survive in various situations. Many items within the kit are multifunction in themselves, so it takes care of a lot of must-haves and also Plan B's in case you forget to bring something essential on your trip. For me, it is very important to bring back-up plans with us and when everything is compact like this, it is easier to bring and justify the small amount of space it takes up. This kit will have you covered.
This multi-function shovel is solidly built. It has lasted us several years and still going strong. A shovel always seems to be relevant when camping and just the fact that it is a collapsible and compact is a joy in itself. This is great to take along while camping because the additional tools have helped us in times when we were lacking in full-size alternatives. This provides a solid foundation of plan A for its main use and plan B for all of the additional uses it provides.
Another item has proven to last and live up to expectations is this camping lantern. Although you will find additional light sources further down in this guide, this one in particular stands out for its' multi-function abilities due to it doubling as a power bank for electronic devices. Be sure that it has charge before heading out, but this is one of my favorite light sources to bring with us. We were able to charge our phones multiple times and still use as light at night over the course of multiple days. The light is very sufficient and is one of the brighter lumen options that we own, which has multiple settings. This is a good plan A for light and possible plan A for phone charging on a short stay, but I do like to designate the power bank aspect as plan B and bring a dedicated power banks just to cover all bases. It is important to be responsible and think ahead on this one, so that you don't end up without light and ability to charge simultaneously. This devices has lasted multiple days of standard use without recharge and many years of camping adventures for us without issue and we are very pleased with it.
Let's not bring an excessive amount of forks, knives, spoons with us when we can keep the count low and simple. I enjoy that these come with a carrying case, easy for transport and they are high quality, very sturdy. These come with us every time and make the packing process very easy. One less thing to remove from your kitchen set to bring outdoors with you, very grab-and-go.
Portability & Organization
To be organized while traveling is always at the forefront of my thoughts when considering ways to keep calm and blissful away from home. I had created a guide to travel organization that can be insightful and applicable to camping as well, I encourage you to follow the link here: Travel Organization & Portability: The Ultimate Guide. However, below you will find a few camping-specific items that are sure to please.
I enjoy these buckets for a few reasons. Firstly, they can collapse and lay flat, if you wish to save space when you aren't using them, but are rigid enough to stay upright when you need them to be. They are made of thermoplastic rubber, making them perfect for cleaning dishes, but they also aren't limited to that - at a most basic level, you have a tote that can be used to hold anything that fits. The fact that this item comes in a set of 2 allows you to use 1 as a washing station and the other as a way to transport or hold items. You can take this with you as you forage or keep it on a table top to hold your cooking items or general items you don't want to misplace.
Keeping your space clean and free of debris is an absolute must out of respect for nature, the sake of cleanliness and other campers. When setting up a designated trash area, we find that it requires a certain level of consideration to achieve optimal effectiveness. When you find that certain spot, it is nice to have a pop-up trash can like this that helps contain everything and holds the bag in place. If you are just working with an exposed trash bag, that may attract animals or pests that you don't want in your area and there are an array of weather conditions that may make an exposed trash bag less ideal. We like to put a heavy object or rock at the bottom keep it in place in case it gets windy, then add the trash bag. When not using, it zips up to be very compact and transportable.
When camping, you don't want to end up feeling that your space is too cluttered and a person can only bring so many tables with them to keep things off the ground. This strap can easily attach anything sturdy and vertical, such a pair of trees. The straps are very strong, adjustable and overall can support up to 150 pounds. This is a nice, portable way to bring some organization to camp and keep your items safe from being a tripping hazard or taking up valuable table space.
Over time, we've been really appreciating having a set of various items designated for camping. It is so lovely to be able to keep the home set separate from the camping set and makes life a lot easier
. Very grab-and-go and allows you to pack for your journey easily without discovering that you forgot to bring scissors or a spatula, everything is packed and ready. Less things to stress about, not having to focus too much on minor details and making a mess of your home trying to find each unique item for your trip.
If you plan to cook eggs, which we do almost every time, this makes the transport of them most ideal and secure. Gently toss them in your cooler and you are good to go. Some on the market appear to be a bit flimsy and may not be designed for outdoor camping, this particular one we have used many times and have not had a single problem. Very well built and reliable. Has the ability to hold up to 18 which is typically well beyond the amount we require but is very handy when providing for a larger group.
You can grill over the fire all you please and I believe there is still a time and place for that, but if you are looking for a suitable, easy way to keep yourself fed while camping, I believe bringing a portable grill will help you do just that. It is difficult to do things when you are hungry, preparing a fire, waiting for it to get to the right temperature, maintaining that fire as you simultaneously cook....feels a bit stressful. This grill requires one of the small propane tanks, which are easy to come by in most camping/grilling sections of stores and cooks a great majority of things with ease. We enjoy that it is on wheels, folds down, so easy to transport and is far better than having a tabletop griller in our opinion, perfect height. We bring this to tailgating, beach days, camping and it has even been our main source of grilling at home for many years. It has served us well. There are also other grill attachments you can buy, called "Swaptops", such as a griddle, which is perfect for eggs, pancakes, etc. and a steel stove grate for pots and pans, which make it the ultimate camping experience! We have made a complete breakfast egg sandwich on here with perfectly toasted bagels, fried eggs and bacon love it to the fullest extent
. Makes cooking outside very close to home.
There are a few ways that a person can achieve brewed coffee out in nature but we find that our favorite way that comes out right every time is with a Coffee Percolator. We enjoy this because you can use in a variety of settings and is helpful for a variety of reasons. You can either let sit near the heat of your fire or if you don't have a fire going, you can set it on your aforementioned grill to heat up. The quality on this one is very durable, built for the outdoors, and you can see from the clear top when the water is adequately percolating. No aluminum or plastic, toxin free. With this, you are not limited to only coffee, you can also utilize this as your way of making hot water for yourself with ease. With hot water, you've opened yourself up to many options for thriving in the wilderness.
Personally, cooking is one of my favorite things to do for friends and family. There is something about camping out in nature and having the ability to provide food of high quality that can bring you warmth and hope, to make it feel like home but in this case, to be cooking out in the wild makes it arguably better than cooking indoors. This will allow you to go well beyond achieving just the basic sustenance to stay alive and allow you to thrive in your environment, working with the elements that you have brought yourself out to do. I enjoy this one as well because the lid doubles as a skillet so get extreme value from this. If you are up for it, this is definitely an item I recommend to bring along and there are so many great recipes out there designed for camping with a Dutch Oven. This particular item is a great set for someone just getting started on cowboy cooking.
Pure Comfort Tech
Here are some homey vibes that you can take with you into the wilderness.
It is one thing to have a wireless speaker or simply using your phone speaker to listen to some music, but this can be significantly elevate your experience to double as a light source. This is why I really like bringing this particular type of speaker with me while camping. I can set it up in a walking path that would otherwise be dimly lit, when walking back to the tent or other areas of camp. The waterproof and wireless features make this a perfect item to create a pathway light and enjoy your tunes while out in nature.
This solar power generator proves to be a great solution to the many possibilities of need for power while you are camping. It is also great at home in case the power goes out, there is a way to have what you need by harnessing the power of the sun. You have the option to either charge from a home plug, car outlet or charge by solar. The flexibility makes it great for multiple scenarios and accepts multiple plug types . These devices are pricey, but this brand is top of the line for power, portability and easy to use.
Perfect for home or on the go, this portable tire inflator can be a life saver. Comes with multiple valve fittings, versatile in many tire applications such as car, bicycle, motorcycle, and more. This is great to bring with you in case of emergency, has a spotlight attached, allows for both inflation and deflation . We enjoy that it informs you of the current PSI for monitoring and it lets you designate the PSI you want the object set to. Can be plugged into the wall for use or on the go with a portable battery. Very easy to use and has held up quite nicely for us.
This one is very suitable to be used as your Plan A device for keeping your phone and small electronics charged. I tend to charge mine up at home by wall outlet so that I am covered and then if a worst case scenario strikes, I can harness the power of the sun to acquire a charge, if I needed. For that to happen, I'd have to run through the long battery life this power bank holds so I'd say that I am thoroughly covered at any given point.
Safe & Secure
Does a person or family need to acquire all items on this list in order to have a happy camping trip? Absolutely not. The aim is to offer some great solutions to help create a comforting environment in the various scenarios you may find yourself in while camping. It has taken me many years and many camping trips with small hinderances to pull me toward these items for the case of "what if" or "wouldn't it be great if such-and-such were easier". It is not to say the worst case will always happen or that every camping excursion requires every thing, I just find it comforting to be prepared for if it does. If you own none of these items on the list but are looking to start gathering, just start small and go slow to what best suits you.
There's a whole world out there to explore and preparedness is a vital key to comfortable, safe travels. Good luck on your next adventure and hope you enjoyed the read.
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