It’s spring and you’re probably getting ready for a camping trip or two. In case you’re wondering what to bring, I’ll share our camp list, our checklist for everything we bring.
First though a word on how we pack. I have a drawer system in the truck and a lot of the tools and recovery gear live in there. In the flat area above the drawers we have room for three plastic bins (like the ones in the photo above) and one cooler. That makes four solid items that can easily be strapped down. Always secure your load inside the vehicle. You don’t want that stuff shifting on the trail, or worse, flying around in an accident. All of the soft stuff (blankets, sleeping bags and the like) go between the space left over along side the bins. Usually I can get us packed and still see out of the rear window.
For longer trips, I take out the back seat of the truck and bolt a couple of D-rings to the floor of the truck where the seat bolts go. In that space, low and central, I’ll strap down 21 gallons of water in 3 plastic jugs. That’s enough for a maximum of 10 days for my wife and I at a rate of 1 gallon per person per day for drinking, cooking, and dishes.
You can see one of the water containers in the picture below.
I’ve rigged it up as a solar shower. Just so you know, showering is not calculated in the 1 gal. / person / day formula. You’ll need extra water for that.
It’s nice to travel comfortably. My wife, Natalie, always has amazing snacks at the ready.
Don’t forget the entertainment! Our friend Greg likes to take a rubber rattlesnake camping and hide it in our stuff. I always forget and end up startled 2 or 3 times per trip.
Our tent is pretty plush. Natalie wasn’t into the 2-1/2 man tent from my bachelor days.
Here’s the tent from the outside. It’s an REI Base Camp 4. We like it a lot. Plenty of room for the two of us plus our gear. Then there’s even more room for stuff in the vestibules.
Greg prefers more spartan accommodations. Those Italian, wool army blankets are great. We both have them.
This is how I set up the roof rack: spare gas, foam bed roll, and a 2nd spare tire.
Here’s a shot of the drawer system I built (there’s a latch missing in this photo). The white, top of the drawers is actually a removable camp table.
OK—here’s our camp list!
Cooler, medium size
Coleman 2-burner stove
grill grates (2)
nested sauce pans (2)
ziploc bags, quart and gallon size
plastic wash tubs (2, one for wash, one for rinse)
sponge / dish brush
dish cloth (2)
Grapefruit Seed Extract
Grill Spray (high heat)
plates + bowls
Water (1 gal. per person, per day, minimum)
Water purifier (for emergencies)
binder clips (for sealing chip bags and the like)
news paper / paper bags
sleeping bag / blankets
Coleman gas lantern or 60-day battery lantern
Firewood (depending on availability)
Camp table (I built mine into my drawer system)
Travel pants (2)
synth. undershirts (3)
Nivea / hand lotion
USGS maps (30 min., 7.5 min.)
Binder with trip notes, radio manuals, weather reports, helpful how-tos, and this camp list (if consumables run out, or you think of something else you need, write it on the list).
Suunto Core watch (altimeter, barometer, compass equipped)
spare batteries (AA, AAA)
tarp, 10’ x 20’ (great improvised shelter / rain fly)
4 2’ rebar stakes (for anchoring tarp)
hot water bottle
folding camp shovel (Great for trenching, if rain is forecast. Great for clearing ground around a fire. Works for handling burning logs too.)
video camera kit (housing, lens, tapes, charger)
motor oil (4 qts)
extra gasoline, 10 gallons (optional)
Onboard CO2 tank (Power Tank)
tube of grease
flat repair kit
spare parts kit for your truck (upper and lower radiator hoses, fuel filter, oil filter, spare fuel line, all belts)
water purification tablets
Hi-lift off-road kit
Hi-lift wheel hooks
Chain, (8ft., 25 ft.)
Tire chains (4)