There are two ways to camp: at the caravan park with all the other campers, or out in the bush on your own. If you want to get away from the park and out into the middle of nowhere, a real adventure awaits. However, you have to go about it properly, otherwise it won’t be the adventure you were hoping for. Here are some tips for getting off the beaten path in style.
Plan Your Trip Carefully
Careful planning is essential for a safe, happy camping trip in the bush. Although you might like the idea of going off and making it up as you go along, it is far less risky to plan your route beforehand. So spend time going over maps, planning your itinerary, choosing your campsites and writing lists of everything you need to take.
Pack Essential Food & Drink
Pack as much food as you need into your vehicle, including bread, fruit, vegetables, milk powder, coffee, tea, rice, sugar, packet sauces, cereals, tinned food, pasta, dried fruit, nuts, biscuits, etc. Focus on things that are easy to prepare, and plan a few meals in advance that you know you can cook up quickly over a fire or gas stove.
Make sure you also take plenty of water. Dehydration can be a serious risk in hot weather, so you don’t want to run out. You should also pack enough for washing unless you camp near to a fresh body of water.
Check Your Vehicle Before Heading Off
You will probably want to take an off-road vehicle, depending how far into the bush you are heading. Whatever vehicle you use, make sure you check it over in detail before heading off. There is nothing worse than experiencing a problem with your vehicle when you are in the middle of nowhere.
Pack the Right Gear
When you decide on camping gear, make a list of all of the essentials you need, along with other things that could prove useful.
The first thing on your list should be a good first aid kit. If you have space, take a large kit with everything you need inside. You could also take a smaller kit along with you to carry if you go walking in the bush. Plasters, bandages, painkillers, antibacterial wipes, scissors and antibiotics are some of the things you should make sure you have, along with any other medications you take.
Other items you could pack include:
– an axe or saw for chopping up wood for the fire, shelter or to move fallen trees that block your path.
– a shovel to dig holes for fires and toilets.
– a sharp knife or two for preparing food, cutting rope, skinning animals, etc.
– strong rope that can be used for a wide range of purposes, such as a washing line.
Camp in Comfort
Just because you are in the bush, it does not mean you cannot camp in comfort. If you want to camp in style, consider packing:
– fold-up chairs, which are more comfortable than sitting on a log or the ground.
– a portable toilet to avoid digging a hole.
– a strong bottle that you can fill with warm water in the evening and use as a hot water bottle.
– solar lights to light up your camping area without worrying about running out of batteries.
– toiletries from home, including hand wipes for a quick wash when water is scarce.
If you don’t want to wash from a bucket, you could take a portable pump-powered shower with you. With this you can set up your own private shower area, then heat up some water over the fire, place it in a bucket and use the battery in your vehicle to power the shower pump.
Even if you pack the best first-aid kit money can buy, you may still find yourselves in difficulties should you get a serious injury. You should always have a mobile phone with you just in case, but be warned that getting reception is unlikely. When you are planning your trip , make sure you know where the nearest place to get help is so that you can drive there directly should you need assistance. In addition, always tell someone where you are going and when you should be getting back so they can raise the alarm if you don’t turn up.
Remember to be careful of insects, snakes and other nasties that could cause you problems. Pack a tent that has a fine mesh to keep out the bugs, and always check the ground before pitching your tent to avoid setting up base on top of an ants’ nest. You could even consider a rooftop tent for your vehicle so you can sleep clear of the ground.
Camp in Style Wherever You Go
No matter where you pitch up your tent, you can ensure you camp in style by planning your trip carefully and making sure you pack the right equipment and food. Keep this list of tips in mind when you go camping in the bush and you will have a trip to remember.
Tayla Heney loves the great outdoors, and camps out often. She also enjoys writing about it, so others can enjoy it safely, too. Her articles mainly appear on outdoor activities blogs.