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Camping Tips for an Absolute Beginner(16 Posts)
MNHQ have commented on this thread.
DH and I have decided to go camping this summer with DS 6 but we've never been before and don't even have a tent the basic things yet!
Can anyone help with recommendations for anything that could get us started? Best kind of tents, beds, cooking gear, things that have helped make camping fun or at least easier for you? Anything at all would be a massive help!
Also bonus points for anyone who can recommend a good campsite in the purple area that I have done an awful job of highlighting
No camping advice, OP, but I’ve found the travel board really helpful, so it might be worth posting there, too.
Oh! I didn't even think of the travel board. I'll ask for it to be moved, thank you so much
An air mattress gets extremely cold in the night. Put a blanket on top of it (or maybe underneath?)
My main tip, from someone who has only been camping a handful of times, only go if the weather looks nice and is set to be good for the duration. Nothing worse than wet / cold camping or packing up.
Why not try glamping first, see of you like it - it can be quite expensive to get a decent tent and all the gear
If you have a friend who will lead you good equipment, borrow rather than buying cheap. Its a lit more enjoyable with good equipment... but uts expensive.
Dont get cold. I realise this might sound stupid, but putting a jumper and trousers on as the temperature starts to drop in the evenings rather than waiting until until you are shivering really helps. Take layers.
Campsites... if the purple area covers Staffordshire, I recommend Quarry Walk Park. Its not fancy, but has clean showers and toilets, little shop, and great grounds for exploring. Also very near Aston Towers if that's your cup of tea.
Alton Towers, not Aston.
If you don’t want to spend £££ on a tent, I recommend this one, it’s ace. 1500mm hydrostatic head, which is v good for the price and it withstands a very decent downpour
The groundsheet is sewn in, so no toads sharing your living space <trauma>
We’re a family of 3, friend has the same for 4 of them, with a porch
Oh and if you’re using air beds, pop some sort of insulation under them, to retain the heat
Be organised. The right gear is hugely personal. Define your requirements first.. cost, weight, packing space etc Take many more clothes of all sorts than you expect. Use the very sturdiest bags for life to sort things into different selections. So you can just pull out of the car what you need immediately. Do not rely on getting anything near your campsite. Salt, pepper, washing liquid, pack it all. Take a battery pack. Ideally two. Do not rely on having WiFi. Take a range of footwear for walking round the campsite. Think about orientation for sunrise, sunset and views before pitching. It's great fun but being organised helps!
When you get there, set up all your stuff and your beds straight away, then it will all be ready when you want to go to bed rather than trying to sort it all out in the dark/cold. We fill flasks with boiling water and make up hot water bottles to take to bed with us.
Have plenty of layers and even a beanie hat. Ear plugs help too.
Try to get the most comfortable sleeping arrangement you can. Thermarest do good self-inflating mattresses. The problem is, the good quality stuff can be expensive. It might be worth trying a 'glamping' experience first to see if you get on with it. This can be expensive too but a good investment in the long run.
Take plenty of wine!
Don't bother... Sorry , my bitter experience!
Hi @OoofBaBoof - we've now moved your thread over to 'Travel Advice' as requested.
one of the best things about camping When you have young children is enjoying their excitement about the adventure. I'd not set my sights on it being super luxurious, but make the most of it being a different way of living together. I remember our boys thinking themselves all grown up to go to the washblock by themselves, or doing the washing up! Miss those days!
There is an actual camping board (under Travel).
This is an excellent tent at a very good price www.millets.co.uk/15980932/eurohike-rydal-500-5-person-tent-15980932/?utm_source=Google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=Shopping&gclid=Cj0KCQjw6NmHBhD2ARIsAI3hrM2wiHONg6Md3hqc4F8w48O_8Fq7d83LsbbJcmDbtANOCzltMhUFNWgaAlngEALw_wcB&gclsrc=aw.ds
Are you quite relaxed, hardy types? The initial outlay on camping is high, but your Ds will almost certainly love it.
Are you ok sleeping on blow up beds? They are the cheapest option but many people prefer SIMs (self inflating mats). Thick ones are very expensive though.
Cheap sleeping bags are ok if you also take some fleece blankets. Or just take your duvets from home. A sleeping bag is good for kids in case they kick a duvet off in the night.
A stove. Start simple, on of the little suitcase stoves that run off a canister that looks like an aerosol. And plan very simple one pan meals.
Have you got a portable BBQ?
Folding picnic chairs?
A folding table is really helpful.
Torches and lanterns.
A bucket for night time wees.
Plastic plates etc, take old stuff from home.
Buy a 5l supermarket mineral water bottle and too it up from the tap for water at your tent.
A cooler - a campsite that lets you freeze blocks in a freezer and keep swapping them is handy.
A plastic washing up bowl to carry your stuff to the sink.
If high winds are forecast think twice. A lot of people lost their tents in the storms of last year, and it is frightening for kids. Once you are more experienced don’t head out without watching the Cross Camping You Tube video on Storm Guying.
In fact watch Gary Cross videos on almost all camping aspects
Packs of brioche rolls, satsumas and bananas for breakfast.
Take flip flops for the showers.