Maybe it’s the fond memories of camping with your dad, a longing for the taste of melty and delicious s’mores roasted over a fire, or clear views of the starry, smoky sky, but whatever it is, summer is the time to answer what’s calling you to camp.
The Catskill Mountains beckon from across the state, and the Appalachian Trail from the north and the south. But there’s good news if you’d rather stick closer to the city – oodles of campgrounds fit for family trips and quick getaways are near to home. Once you pick your camping destination, you’ll need to make sure you’ve got the appropriate gear. Save the hiking for your campout and skip the trek through REI, because we’ve compiled a list of essentials for summer camping right here.
Check out our picks for the best camping gear of summer, so you won’t find yourself squirming uncomfortably on the forest floor or drinking bacteria-ridden water on your next outdoor adventure.
When it comes to sleeping on the ground, comfort is key. That’s why investing in a quality sleeping bag is the move for camping in the summer. A sleeping bag like this one from the North Face, which is designed for temperatures above 35 degrees Fahrenheit, is ideal for June and July heat.
This one is for when the crisp mountain air isn’t quite enough to wake you up in the mornings. The good news is you can still get your morning cup of Joe thanks to an array of products, even though your Keurig is safely at home. You can take along a kettle and French press, or you can bring along this collapsable silicone dripper and brew your coffee fireside. You’ll still need a kettle, but this way you can brew directly into your cup.
This collapsable tailgating table will keep all your drinks and snacks off the ground and in arm’s reach. And weighing in at only four pounds, it’s easy to carry. Time to stock up on the trail mix.
If you plan on packing enough water for the duration of your camping experience, feel free to skip this one. But if you’re going the self-filtration and harvest-from-the-mountain-streams route, make sure to pack iodine tablets. This is to ensure the water is safe to drink and won’t cause stomach problems and other issues. Be careful to follow the instructions on the bottle, and not to mix up the taste-enhancing tablets with the actual iodine ones. You’ll thank yourself later.
While nature is the greatest provider in the realm of sticks, proper roasting rods will come in handy when creating the ideal s’more. Plus, they double as roasting sticks for other foods such as hot dogs. The Marshmallow Forks from Camerons are the key to scrumptious s’mores.
Comfort is key on a campout. Wear lightweight clothing that wicks away moisture and keeps you cozy at night (think activewear). Or opt for a fun hiking skirt like this. Guys might want to go for some convertible pants for double the utility.