CAMPING 101: 5 IMPORTANT PACKING STEPS FOR YOUR SUMMER ADVENTURE

Shoes Pictured: Keen Water Sandals

While you're planning your summer holidays, make the most of the season and head into the great outdoors for some quality camping time. When hotels are memorable, it's not usually for a good reason. When you remember a camping spot, it'll be for the beautiful views, quiet nights, and the experiences you have with your travelling companions. Unlike a hotel room, camping enriches your life and creates amazing memories.

Before you head out into the great unknown, read this quick guide to make sure you have everything you need to have fun and be safe on your amazing summer adventure!

1. Know Where You're Going

Your destination will determine your packing, so do your homework! The things you'd need to take with you to the coastal forests of the Pacific Northwest are very different from what you'd want with you in the dry, windy deserts of the American Southwest. When you start packing for your trip, check the weather forecast for your destination and find out as much as you can about the local conditions. 

Are you desert camping? Be mindful of how cold the nights can get and make sure you have enough water, a warm sleeping bag, and lots of layers to make it through the night. Heading to rainy coastal climates?  Make sure your tent and outer clothing layers are not just water-resistant, but completely seam-sealed waterproof. Being wet, cold, and uncomfortable is the quickest way to ruin a camping trip.

2. Dress the Part

Much of your outerwear will be determined by your destination, but there are several key pieces that'll make your trip a lot more enjoyable regardless of where you're going.

  • Base layers and shirts made with technical materials: Cotton holds moisture and once it gets wet, it will keep you cold and uncomfortable. Technical materials like polypropelene and polyester blends wick moisture away from the skin keeping you dry and comfortable.
  • Shoes with good tread: Hiking boots and trail running shoes with good tread and support will make you less prone to sprains and falls. Check out the outdoors shoes available on SHOEme.ca.
  • Layers for warmth: Relying on one big warm jacket to keep you both warm and dry won't do you any good if it's warm and rainy - you'll just sweat and get wet anyways. Strategic layering with a baselayer to wick moisture, a midlayer for warmth, and a waterproof shell will keep you comfortable in any climate.

3. Don't Forget the Essentials

Water bottles, maps, sleeping bags, tents... there are some things that are completely necessary for camping.  If you find yourself halfway to the camp site without these key things, you'll have to find a store en route or turn back home and pick them up, because without shelter or water, you're going to have a bad time. Once you've done your homework, make your list and check it twice... then check it again!

4. Leave the Non-Essentials at Home

It is just as important to make sure you have what you need as it is to make sure you don't bring too much. Bringing your whole life with you not only defeats the purpose of camping to 'get away from it all,' it's also heavy and takes up a lot of space in your backpack.

5. Capture the Moments

Whatever your preferred photography tool is, don't forget to capture all the scenic moments camping has to offer. From gorgeous sunsets to windswept beaches, there is so much beauty in the great outdoors that you'll appreciate having a picture once you're back at work, wondering where to go on your next camping trip.

Share your stories! We want to know where you're going this summer! Tag @SHOEmeca in your summer camping adventure pictures and tell us about your favourite spots.

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