What to Pack for Camping?


One of my biggest concerns when it comes to camping has been packing. It always seems that we’re lugging half of the house out there for a three night stay. I’ve always been under the philosophy that you can never be ‘over prepared’, but of course I question that philosophy when I’m loading and unloading the 100th container. I’ve looked at packing lists on different websites… but most of them seemed to be written with a week or longer stays in mind. And it seems that even when I’ve attempted to pare it down… I just have TOO much fluff!

Pack for Camping

Pack for Camping

So, I was wondering if any of you would mind sharing your weekend packing list. I thought maybe that would help me to evaluate what we really should be taking.

I am getting better at customizing my own list. The last time I went I made a list of EVERYTHING we took and marked off what we actually used while we were there. I figured I could eliminate most of the things that we never even unpacked… Except for items like the first aid kit and the fire extinguisher. However, being the worrier that I am… I just know that the one time I don’t pack it will be the one time that we desperately could have used it.


Sounds like your bringing too much stuff that you “need”

I don’t have a list, I just go to the camping shelf in the barn and grab what I think I’ll need and can fit in the trunk of my little car.

Sounds like your bringing too much stuff that you “need”. Perhaps you should need a little less. Try doing without some things as an experiment once in a while or let someone else critique your packing sometime. I have never brought a fire extinguisher with.

I’ll never forget my girlfriends face as I pared down her load for her backpack when we went down the Havi Supai trail by the Grand Canyon. She ended up with about half the stuff that she thought she needed. At the end of the trip there were a few things that she still wouldn’t have brought. (It was a four day hike)

I probably should leave some of it at home

You’re right, since the whole point in going is to get away from it all, I probably should leave some of it at home.

I think you are also right in suggesting that I let someone else look at my list. I am planning to clean out, restock and reorganize my camping gear sometime in the next two months in order to make leaving/packing for weekend excursions much quicker. My goal is to have everything in one (maybe two) places, so that all I have to do is load up that stuff and not have to worry about what I’m forgetting. So, maybe I’ll see if I can get my sister to come over and evaluate what I’m repacking.

I’d ask my husband to take a look, but if it were up to him all we’d bring on ANY trip would be our sleeping bags, toothbrushes and fishing gear. I don’t mind roughing it, but that’s a little too rough for me.

Photo by mil8.

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