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First ever camping trip- 3 weeks in france- what do we need?

(59 Posts)
krisskross Sat 05-Apr-14 21:18:52

We are newbies to camping...some of you have replied to my previous posts asking for advice.

Now we have taken the plunge and bought a mahoosive tent (saw it up in the shop today after buying online, its bloody enormous!!).

What do we need now? I know we need sleeping mats and bags, cooking utensils etc, but i'd love it if a clever mumsnetter could give me a checklist of what we need.

Neither of us have a clue of how to cook when camping, use the electricity on site etc etc. Advice about a stove and whats best would be great.


Karenblixen Sat 05-Apr-14 22:41:43

*in their tents

Karenblixen Sat 05-Apr-14 22:43:58

OP I am going to start a thread about the rodent question I think. I need clarification.

krisskross Sat 05-Apr-14 22:51:39

Thanks Karen- have you been camping before? did anything happen, rodent wise? are you phobic about them too?


Methe Sat 05-Apr-14 22:51:44

We never had rodents smile

krisskross Sat 05-Apr-14 22:54:28

Thanks Methe. phew.

TeaAndALemonTart Sat 05-Apr-14 22:59:52

We didn't know it was a cat and thought it was a rat until DH got up to check.

YouAreMyRain Sat 05-Apr-14 23:04:06

Never had rodents, camped in France too, no rodents (had a hedgehog in the tent in wales tho)

Jux Sat 05-Apr-14 23:09:42

I have been camping most years since I was 4 or 5 so about 50 years. I have never, never ever, seen a mouse while camping. Spiders and insects yes, mice and other rodents, no. If you keep all your food in containers and chuck the rubbish every night they have no reason to come anywhere near you.

Bring shoes which are easy to get on and off and preferably which are weather proof, like crocs. Also gumboots and thick socks - the weather is likely to be OK in France, but they can have sudden heavy downpours.

I would enforce a couple of rules from the beginning:

Shoes off in the tent.
No drinks in the sleeping areas.

I hope you have a fantastic time. Camping is my holiday of choice.

Fedupnagging Sat 05-Apr-14 23:12:49



krisskross Sat 05-Apr-14 23:13:03

Thanks Jux.....makes me feel more hopeful! I really want to go as I know the DC will love it....,but the thought of mice running up and down outside of the the tent is gruesome.

wohmum Sat 05-Apr-14 23:17:46

We camp loads, probably about 30 different campsites here and abroad over the last few years and I've never seen mice or any other rodents near the tent. Doesn't mean they aren't there, but I've never actually seen one.

krisskross Sat 05-Apr-14 23:20:17

Thanks Wohmum...have you heard them running up your tent???

Ledkr Sat 05-Apr-14 23:32:12

You can hire fridges in French campsites.

Karenblixen Sat 05-Apr-14 23:35:11

Hi Jux reassuring as always!

Erroroccurred Sat 05-Apr-14 23:39:51

No rodents here. We only cook pot noodles, fried egg/sausage, the odd BBQ and eat lots of great fresh fruit and veg and eat out once a day.

Good chairs, alcohol and ear plugs would be our top tips

smugmumofboys Sat 05-Apr-14 23:40:17

We camp loads and have never seen or heard rodents in or near the tent. We did find a small toad in a saucepan when we were in Anglesey though. grin

Take loo roll. French campsites don't seem to provide it.

Karenblixen Sat 05-Apr-14 23:49:32

I have been camping once last summer when my exP bought me a brilliant tent by way of paying for his sins (unsuccessfully) and we still have our tent and are planning camping trips for the spring / summer whenever possible.

The kids absolutely loved it, even though the weather was not great.

I have not seen or noticed any rodents then, only seagulls who pulled bags of food out from underneath a neighbouring tent and made a huge mess. I think too that it is important to keep all food in closed containers or a fridge / car fridge and keep the tent as tidy and clean as possible.

I am terribly phobic about rodents and was not even aware of the possibility about them going near tents, but it seems that this is nothing to worry about and we will still go camping.

Jux Sat 05-Apr-14 23:53:02

Hey there KB! I've been thinking about you thanks

No rodent has ever run up my tent either.

Keeping things dry is generally the hardest aspect of camping. Remember the reality of morning dew!! Anything touching the ground will be wet in the morning no matter whether it has rained or not, so make sure everything is off the ground before you go to bed. (Our tent has half an integral groundsheet, but the other half is a separate groundsheet. Jumpers left with a bit of sleeve touching the grass, inside the tent, will be wet in the morning.)

BingoWingsBeGone Sun 06-Apr-14 07:17:20

We camp loads (including 3 weeks in Europe last summer) and I have never seen or heard a mouse. Our food is kept in the fridge or a plastic 'trunk' and bin emptied every night.

fernley Sun 06-Apr-14 07:26:29

I would definitely go for a couple of nights closer to home first. Oh and a washing line is helpful.

YoniMatopoeia Sun 06-Apr-14 07:27:02

I have been camping in France and Spain for nearly 40 years, and never had rodents in the tent.

Camped for many years, the last two in France, and never saw or heard a rodent.

A stick insect hitched a lift from the South to the North last year though.

Top tip: We saw loads of campers with potted Basil plants last year that appeared to deter mosquitoes. They were sold in the salad section of most supermarkets.

IDontDoIroning Sun 06-Apr-14 08:03:05

A cadac - like a cross between a barbecue and a stove

potbellyroast Sun 06-Apr-14 10:39:32

I've also never seen rodents in all my years of camping but I'm obsessive about keeping food in boxes with lids.

However, I stayed in a huge (there were 18 of us) house in France - very, very nice house with swimming pool etc and the biggest rat I have ever seen ran across our bedroom floor. So tbh you could end up deciding not to camp because of them and end up seeing one anyway!

Jux Sun 06-Apr-14 13:59:57

Lots of clothes pegs, too! Immensely useful for all sorts of things.

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