What To Bring For Your Car Camping Adventure With Kids


Camping is a family-favorite pastime millions of American households take part in every year. From exploring new terrains and experiencing the wildlife to simply enjoying the fresh air, camping has so much to offer families of all sizes. Of course, it takes some careful planning to pull it off. Below, we’ll go over some preparation tips and what to pack to help make your car camping experience one to remember.

First things first, you need a reliable vehicle. Loading up the entire family and all of the necessities of camping requires space and a strong engine. It’s recommended to choose a car or truck with a high-performance engine, especially if you plan to take it off road. If possible, a Chevy truck or Jeep with a custom engine would be ideal for an off-road camping adventure. That being said, there are ways to make the most out of the vehicle you have — you just have to understand the limitations. Otherwise, you risk ending up in a situation needing a tow or worse.

Next, you need to pick where you’re going to pitch your tent. There are hundreds of stunning places to camp across the United States. To narrow down the list, it helps to know what activities the family wants to do while camping. Decide early on if you aspire to hike up a mountain, swim in the Great Lakes or just try it out first at a nearby state park campground. If opting for the latter, be sure to look up the rules beforehand as well as the amenities it offers. Not every campground will have showers, potable water or even allow campfires.

Once you have your destination in mind, it’s time to gather the essentials. This includes a tent with stakes, ground cover, sleeping bags, sleeping pads or an inflatable mattress, camp chairs, pillows and extra blankets. You also need to plan for meals and snacks. Often, campers choose to make pre-made meals or prepare ones that are easy to assemble. Whatever menu you plan, just remember to cook up hearty, high-calorie dishes to make up for all the extra calories the family will be burning. If bringing pets, be sure to have enough supplies for them as well.

Plenty of water is also a necessity. You should have multiple gallons for each person for every day you’re camping. The last thing you want is to run out of drinking water and have to make an emergency trip. Speaking of emergencies, you need to be prepared for the unexpected. This means packing a first aid kit, spare batteries, duct tape, a map and other safety equipment. You’ll also need lots of weather-appropriate clothing and shoes to protect against the elements.

While this is not an exhaustive list of gear, it’s enough to get you started. If you want to learn more about taking a car camping adventure with kids, please see the accompanying resource for further information.

Infographic created by Golen Engine Service, offering precision-built LSx short block engines




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