Saturday, September 24, 2016

5 Essentials for Your Next Camping Trip or: All Rain Flies are Not Created Equal

It's been a while my friends...I've missed you!
The start of the school year and the rhythm of routine have been my
focus lately. SO happy to find time to be here in my space with you.......

So..... traveling, sightseeing, exploring this beautiful land of ours, huh? 
  If you had told me two decades ago 
that at some time in the future I'd sort of consider myself 
on expert on camping  - - of all things,
or that all of us would have camped clear 
across the continent in 41 states and
from the bottom of the Grand Canyon
to the edge  of a glacier, in and around
 about three dozen national parks and battlefields
and, of course, 
in high style << ahem>> at  full service camping "resorts,"
I would probably have assumed 
someone hit you over the head with a brick.
I was never a prima donna by any means
 when it came to lodging accommodations.
But setting out to travel the open road and make camp in a different
state or national park or forest on any given night ?
 Not a life sized picture I carried in my head.
exploring with the family from sea to shining sea 
would not be doable at all,
if not for throwing that piece of rolled up nylon 
and a batch of sleeping bags
into the van to cross the country.
Truth is, not only is camping the affordable option 
when it comes to travel
 anywhere - - -and I mean anywhere because we've done it  - -
the advantages of camping and the benefits of travel in this way
simply cannot be lived by staying in a plush Marriott off the interstate.....
Not that that doesn't sound pretty enticing some nights, trust me.  
Speaking f which, here's my list of 
 5 Tips to Frugally Taking That Cross Country Trip 
and my column, The Top 5 Ways Changes You  

So, whether  you've camped as a kid, with your 20 something buddies 
years ago before parenthood, as a mom or dad with your own clan,
 or never ever ----here's what you need to
make an overnight or a month on the road safe and enjoyable: 
~ 1 ~

 Coleman is truly the name in outdoor gear for a reason.
 They're not the cheapest, but they are the best.
The small nuances of this personal "cabin"   
will keep you protected, dry and warm, be your
sleeping accommodations  for ever and here's the thing to keep in mind:
It costs less than one night  on the road.

 Another Coleman special.
Glacier National Park, 2011

~ 2 ~ 

Coleman lantern: LED - not propane
Whatever you do, don't get a lantern that is powered by propane
and uses those  old style mantles. Please.
If you already have an older lantern
 and you just need the mantle refills....
okay then...... here you go.

Otherwise, please make your camping trip as convenient as possible with 
this new invention called: batteries! Ha
THIS lantern throws 40 lumens of light, 
runs 175 hours and uses 4D batteries.

 It's a must-have!

.......and how cute are these mini Coleman lantern lights too?

LED decorator lights that actually do throw light in your yard or campsite!

~ 3 ~ 

Nope this one's not Coleman , but I truly love it and Ive had it for eons.
It's warm, water proof and sooooo comfy.
Machine washable too. 
Some nights I really feel like this sleeping bag is 
                                                   even more comfortable than my bed! 
   You might want to pick up one of these sleep pads for added
comfort in those pebble-ish, hard-ish
 campsites you'll encounter once in a while.

Coleman Silverton Tall Self Inflating Camp Pad

~ 4 ~ 

I know, I know, there's an app for that.
I'm showing how old I really am listing these as necessities.
Truth be told, they are.

Two reasons why:
A. What if you <gasp> cannot access the WWW
 from some  isolated spot?
(These spots do exist.)


B. Do you really want your kids to grow up
 not knowing how to truly navigate?

We're not talking about possessing the skills of Ferdinand Magellan, 
just the ability to open a map, 
find your location and get from point a to point b.


~ 5 ~

We've had ours for years. It seems indestructible.

Has wind block "panels" and 20K BTUs of cooking power.
Comes with a hose to easily  attach to your mini  propane tank

In addition to the above,
 here's my list of 5 personal essentials you might like to consider
bringing along on the next camping trip.

Happy Camping!!

Top 5 Reasons Travel Changes You!

 Wyoming Sunset: 
"Happy" Five Minute Friday

5 Movies You Should  Definitely See Before  Taking That Cross Country Trip


I'm happy to join the favorite fives at 
The Purple Hydrangea
Don't you love that name??!!
 Please click over to peruse many bloggers' favorites...!!

 Friends, as always,  
thank you for stopping over and 
spending some of your precious time 
here at my home on the web!

Have you signed up to receive my posts in your email inbox?
   If not, just enter your email address here
so we can be in touch regularly!

Enter your email address:

You might wish to follow on Facebook as well.....

Until next time


  1. My husband and I want to get into camping and I really would like to get into hard core backpacking! So this are some great ideas for us to get started with! I am sharing this post with my husband!

    1. I hope you enjoy, Chasa! It sounds like you might be doing more backcountry, primitive camping than we good luck and have fun!

      I appreciate your visit!

  2. I'm so excited to read this post Chris! We're just talking about getting our gear for camping (I know - now that it's almost October, we finally get bitten by the camping bug!! Ha!). I was actually really nervous about what we need, but you really lined this up for us. Thanks! And also - thanks for linking up with us. Just an FYI, we are now going to be doing our link ups once a month - every last Tuesday of the month, effective immediately. We'll be sure to send out reminders! :) Come stop by at xx

    1. Thanks Be Balino! I know we've communicated since you;s been months. I'm loving the monthly last Tuesday link up concept.

      God bless

  3. We do a lot of camping with our little kids. We make sure to bring lots of plastic bags to contain messes and we bring a portable potty for our little ones to use because getting a 3 year old to bend over and pee in the forest can be tough going! Thanks for your tips. I'll share them with my husband!

    1. It sounds like you're super prepared for the outdoor travels!

      Thanks for visiting Sterling!

  4. When we were first married camping was the only way we could afford a vacation. It has been 24 years since I have camped because the last time I remember, I was 8 months pregnant and it was 108 degrees out...needless to say we broke camp and ended up in a hotel. BUT we are taking those wee ones now grown on a family trip this year. I have used every one of those items except the decorative lights...have to add those to the list this year! Thanks for joining Favorite 5

    1. Debbie~ Thanks so much for stopping in! I hope your upcoming camping trips are fantastic! I CAN be a wonderful way to travel!

  5. Perfect timing! I will be on a tour through Australia for 4 weeks soon. I'll take a campervan so not actually proper camping but point 2-5 will be very useful. Thanks!

    1. Enjoy the trip! I'll be clicking over to read up on your travels! Thank you for visiting!!

  6. I like those lanterns. Never used one for camping, but maybe it's time to try!

    1. We, too, camped for many miles and on many trips before purchasing one of the lanterns..... They're so practical! And much better now than decades ago when you needed to use those mantles inside! So much easier!

      Thank you for visiting!!

  7. Haha I love that you mentioned the addition/invention of BATTERIES! ;-) So true. If you can make your camping excursion easier, why not, right? Great tips!

    1. Absolutely! These "modern" conveniences, right?

      Thanks for stopping!!

  8. Everything seems to be very useful, but that last stove won my heart! End if it's indestructible, so much the better!


Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts.. .....
I will reply right here in the combox; so please check back if you'd like to continue the conversation.
If you'd like, you can contact me instead via email ~
campfiresandcleatsATgmail DOT com.