Camping is an excellent way to get in touch with nature, escape the hustle and bustle of daily life, and make unforgettable memories. However, if you’re a beginner camper or have had a bad experience in the past, it’s easy to feel intimidated and scared of camping.
This fear can prevent you from enjoying the great outdoors and all the fun that comes with it. But don’t worry; we’ve got you covered. In this beginner’s guide, we’ll show you how to stop getting scared of camping and make the most out of your outdoor adventure.
Why are People Scared of Camping?
Before we dive into how to stop getting scared of camping, let’s first understand why people feel scared in the first place. The following are some common reasons why people get scared of camping:
- Fear of the unknown: If you’ve never been camping before, the thought of sleeping in a tent, cooking outdoors, and being away from the comforts of home can be overwhelming.
- Fear of wild animals: The idea of encountering wild animals, such as bears or snakes, can be scary for many people.
- Fear of the dark: If you’re not used to being in the dark, camping can be a daunting experience, especially when you’re sleeping in a tent.
- Fear of bad weather: Camping can be a lot less fun if you’re caught in a thunderstorm or heavy rain.
- Fear of being alone: Camping can be a solitary experience, and if you’re not used to being alone, it can be scary.
- Fear of getting lost: If you’re camping in an unfamiliar area, it’s easy to get lost, which can be a frightening experience.
Now that we’ve identified some common reasons why people get scared of camping let’s move on to some tips on how to overcome these fears and enjoy your camping trip.
Choose the Right Tent
Your tent is your home away from home when camping, so it’s essential to choose the right one. There are many different types of tents to choose from, including dome tents, cabin tents, backpacking tents, and more. Consider the following when choosing a tent:
- Size: Make sure the tent is the right size for your needs. If you’re camping with a family, you’ll need a larger tent than if you’re camping alone.
- Weather resistance: Choose a tent that can withstand the weather conditions you’ll be camping in. For example, if you’re camping in an area with high winds, you’ll need a tent that can handle strong gusts.
- Ease of setup: Look for a tent that’s easy to set up, especially if you’re new to camping.
- Ventilation: Make sure the tent has adequate ventilation to prevent condensation and keep you cool in warm weather.
- Durability: Look for a tent made from high-quality materials that can withstand wear and tear.
Some popular tent brands include Coleman, Kelty, and REI. Each of these brands offers a range of tents to suit different needs and budgets.
Practice Setting Up Your Tent
Once you’ve chosen your tent, it’s essential to practice setting it up before you go camping. This will help you feel more confident when you’re setting up camp in the great outdoors. Set up your tent in your backyard or a local park to get the hang of it. Make sure you have all the necessary equipment, including tent poles, stakes, and guylines.
Prepare for the Weather
One of the biggest fears people have when camping is bad weather. While you can’t control the weather, you can prepare for it. Check the weather forecast before you go camping and pack accordingly. Bring warm clothing and rain gear if the forecast calls for cold or wet weather.
If it’s going to be hot, bring lightweight clothing and plenty of water. It’s also a good idea to bring extra tarps or a canopy to provide shade or shelter from the rain.
Plan Your Meals
Cooking meals while camping can be intimidating, especially if you’re used to cooking on a stove or in a microwave. But with a little planning, you can enjoy delicious and easy-to-make meals while camping. Plan your meals ahead of time and make a list of the ingredients you’ll need.
Consider prepping some of your meals at home, such as marinating meat or chopping vegetables, to save time at the campsite. Don’t forget to bring a portable stove, fuel, and cookware. Some popular camping stoves brands include Coleman, MSR, and Primus.
Bring the Right Gear
Having the right gear can make all the difference when it comes to feeling comfortable and safe while camping. Some essential gear to bring includes:
- Sleeping bags and pads: A good quality sleeping bag and sleeping pad can help keep you warm and comfortable while sleeping in a tent.
- Lighting: Bring a headlamp or flashlight to help you navigate in the dark.
- First aid kit: Make sure you have a basic first aid kit that includes bandages, antiseptic, and pain relievers.
- Navigation: Bring a map and compass or a GPS device to help you navigate in case you get lost.
- Clothing: Pack appropriate clothing for the weather, including warm layers for cold nights and rain gear if necessary.
Overcome Your Fears
Now that you have all the gear and knowledge you need to go camping, it’s time to overcome your fears. Here are some tips on how to do so:
- Start small: If you’re new to camping or feeling anxious, start with a short camping trip close to home. This will help you get used to sleeping outdoors and cooking over a fire.
- Bring a friend: Camping with a friend can be a fun and comforting experience. Plus, you’ll have someone to share the workload with.
- Educate yourself: Learn as much as you can about the area you’ll be camping in, including the wildlife and weather conditions. This will help you feel more prepared and less scared.
- Stay positive: Focus on the positive aspects of camping, such as the beautiful scenery and the chance to unplug and relax.
Related: How Do I Protect Myself While Camping Alone?
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q: Is it safe to camp alone?
Camping alone can be safe if you take the necessary precautions, such as choosing a safe location, letting someone know where you’ll be, and bringing appropriate gear and supplies.
Q: What should I do if I encounter a wild animal?
If you encounter a wild animal, stay calm and slowly back away. Don’t approach the animal or try to feed it. Make loud noises or use bear spray if necessary.
Q: What if I get lost while camping?
If you get lost, stay calm and try to retrace your steps. Use a map or GPS device to help you navigate. If you’re unable to find your way back, stay put and make yourself visible to rescuers.
Q: What if it rains while camping?
If it rains while camping, stay dry by bringing extra tarps or a canopy. Make sure your tent is pitched on high ground and use a groundsheet to prevent water from seeping in. Bring extra dry clothes to change into if necessary.
In conclusion, camping can be a fun and rewarding experience, but it’s understandable to feel scared or intimidated, especially if you’re new to camping. By choosing the right gear, practicing setting up your tent, preparing for the weather, planning your meals, and overcoming your fears, you can enjoy all