I don’t know about you but I like my camping simple

The simpler the better and that is why I appreciate any camping hack and tips that I come across that will genuinely make my outdoor adventures better in some way so I’d like to start by thanking all of those ingenious campers (and other outdoorsy types) who have contributed to the camping community by sharing their ideas and I encourage anyone with a good idea to get it out there

Below I have compiled some tried and trusted ideas that cover a wide range of camping situations and in some instances I have modified them a little. I’ve also included some of my personal favourites that work for me so there is something for everyone in here. A lot of these ideas have certainly helped me with my camping adventures and I hope you will find them useful too…

123 Lets Go

 

SPACE SAVERS

  • Microfibre towels are a better option than a regular towel providing you get a good quality one. They are lighter, very absorbent and dry quicker than a regular towel plus they fold up to the size of an average book which is great for space-saving
  • Bowls, dishes, kettles, pots, buckets, laundry hampers, sinks and dish racks. Basically any food or water container you would normally take camping now comes in collapsible silicone form. These are great for space-saving and convenience. Learn more about these in silicone camping equipment
  • Keep empty Tic Tac containers and other small receptacles such as those aluminium tubes you get your vitamin B tablets in. All those things are fantastic for taking small amounts of salt, pepper, flour, herbs and spices, nuts, etc. with you. Heck, you can even throw a small supply of baby powder into one of these if you got a bit of chafing going on. Be sure to label them
  • Those clear plastic, stackable screw top containers are great for keeping your personal stash of favourite sweets and snacks in for that sneaky midnight treat (man I hope my better half doesn’t read this part). Also, one for the fishos. Carry your hooks, swivels, sinkers, etc. in them. It beats lugging your tackle box everywhere
  • Use clear plastic storage bins to pack your camp gear in when car camping. You’ll be able to see what’s where without having to pull all your gear out of bags. Make sure you get the heavy-duty ones. Check out How to pack for car camping for more

 

FOOD & DRINK

  • An oldie but a goody are ‘Eggs in a bottle’. Crack whatever amount of eggs you want into a bowl, give them a stir and then using a funnel, transfer them into a plastic bottle. Shake when you want to use, pour into your fry pan (or camp oven) and Hey Presto!.. omelette or scrambled eggs in a flash. Even use a bit for ‘egg wash’ when you’re frying up some freshly caught fish
  • Make up some dehydrated meals and snacks before your camping trip. It will save time that will be better spent enjoying the outdoors. They will save you packing and storage space and they will definitely save you $$$. See how you can do it here
  • Pre-freeze all your plastic water bottles, juices bottles and juice boxes. This will help keep everything in your icebox/esky cold when travelling and extend the time before you need to pull over and buy extra ice and the bonus is you’ll have a nice cold drink after you’ve set up your campsite
  • Place 12 charcoals briquettes in an empty cardboard egg cartons for smaller cooking jobs. Just light the egg carton in your fire pit or kettle BBQ give them 20 minutes or so to ‘ash over’ and cook away. This will provide more than enough heat to fry up a nice meal for a small group

 

SECURITY

  • There’s a huge range of look-a-like diversion products available that look like anything from hairbrushes to tins of food that you can store your smaller valuables and money in for that extra peace of mind when you are away from your campsite exploring or having fun.

TIP: A neat little security trick is to utilise a used wet wipes packet to secretly stash your cash, keys, jewellery, etc. Conceal your valuables in between layers of tissues to bulk the packet up and make it look even more authentic

  • For the security conscious camper that has to keep larger, bulkier items outside their tents, there are theft deterrent devices such as ground anchoring systems that screw into the ground and you can lock your BBQ, generator, camp furniture, etc. to.

N.B. None of the things mentioned above are foolproof anti-theft devices, they will just provide a basic level of security. In saying that, it is rare that like-minded campers want to steal from one another anyway…everyone’s too busy enjoying the outdoors

 

KEEP IT CLEAN

  • Buy some cheap plastic shower caps to cover the bottoms of your dirty boots/shoes before you throw them in the tent, car or backpack after bush walking
  • Get your hands on some of these small refillable silicone bottles, fill ’em up with liquid soap, shampoo, conditioner and sunscreen, attach your loofah or washcloth with a carabiner and your ready for the ‘bathroom’
  • Stuff some dry dirty clothes inside your wet shoes overnight to absorb some of the moisture and make them more comfortable for walking in the next day
  • Make a quick DIY toilet WITH A SEAT for that extra bit of comfort when nature calls. This can be done by cutting a slit down a length of pool noodle and push it onto the rim of a 10 or 20 litre bucket. Pack some bio-degradable bags to line it with. Throw in a few handfuls of dirt or sand after each use, that way you should get a couple of uses before disposing of the bag (thoughtfully). Simple but effective and any female company will love you for it. Well that’s the plan anyway
  • Make a basic hand washing station for your camp site by putting a bar of soap in a nylon stocking and hang it from the handle of a water container with a nozzle. Easy Peasy
  • Who says you have to wear dirty smelly clothes when your out roughing it? Make your own simple washing machine by taking a 20L bucket with secure lid, put a hole in the middle of the lid large enough for the handle of a (long and preferably clean) toilet plunger to slide through then you simply throw in a few litres of water, some soap powder and your dirty clothes and start plunging away. After a few minutes you can give your clothes a quick rinse off, wring them out and hang ’em up to dry…. Clean clothes in no time
  • Use a plastic cereal container for a handy waste bin in your car and tent
  • Always pack wet wipes, paper towel and rubbing alcohol when camping. You’ll find these invaluable in so many situations
  • Grab yourself a few cheap pop-up mesh clothes hampers. Awesome for your dirty clothes (obviously), storing wet gear such as snorkelling equipment, kids beach toys and Floaties and you can line one with a plastic bag to make your camp garbage bin

 

ON THE GROUND

  • Always take some duct tape, a roll of double-sided Velcro strips and cable ties. There’s not much you can’t fix or modify with these three babies
  • Secure your tarp by putting a loop of your rope or paracord through the eyelet and put a short stick through the loop and pull the rope tight. Do this instead of tying your rope directly to the eyelets and it will save on wear and tear of the eyelets so your tarp will last you longer
  • Cotton balls soaked in hand sanitiser or dabbed with petroleum jelly make great little fire starters
  • Rub a candle on tent and backpack zippers for lubrication
  • Another handy zipper idea is to put a key ring on your zipper pulls for easy opening in the colder weather when you’re wearing gloves or mittens
  • Interlocking foam mats are great for extra comfort on the tent floor especially when camping on hard or rocky ground. Also, the mats with round holes in them make a great ‘entry mat’ to your tent as they will minimise the amount of dirt and sand that you walk into your tent
  • Grab yourself a 12 pack of Solar lights (or more if you like) to place anywhere around your campsite that you’ll require a bit of light at night. Super cheap, super handy
    • Attach a shoe organiser or car seat organiser to a tree, portable gazebo, inside your tent or on the side of your camp table to store individual items. It makes it easy to find all your bits and pieces
      • Turn your headlamp inside out and put it over a large, translucent plastic water bottle and Ta-Da, your very own homemade camping lantern

       

      MULTI-PURPOSE

        BUNGEE CORDS (aka elastic straps) come in various lengths and can be used for a multitude of things. A few are:

        • Tying down loads
        • Makeshift clothes line
        • Paper towel hanger
        • Emergency belt
        • Link a few to throw a tarp over for a quick shelter
        • Tourniquet

        I just know there are a stack more ideas for these out there. Let me know your ideas in the comments section below.

        ALFOIL

        Alfoil is a bit of a ‘Dark horse’ when it comes to uses for camping as it has quite a few uses that you wouldn’t expect. It could save your life for one. Others include:

        • Cooking food in
        • Emergency signalling mirror
        • Candle holder
        • Cleans pans, grills, hot plates, etc.
        • Sharpens scissors and clean knives
        • Heat retainer for food
        • Fashion into a wind shield for use when cooking on your camp stove
        • Emergency insulation (line the inside of your sleeping bag in extreme cold)

        BINDER CLIPS

        Are another handy item and I don’t go camping without a small bag full of them. They’re terrific for a multitude of things such as:

        • Holding the tent door & window flaps back
        • Hanging towels and wet clothes out to dry
        • Hanging my string lights up in my portable Gazebo
        • Securing the table cloth onto the camp table on blowy days
        • Pinning onto my partners nose when she’s snoring:)

        Again, these are another item that you’ll come up with more uses for in the outdoors

        PVC PIPE

        • Make your own fishing rod transport tube. Get yourself a length of PVC pipe (the diameter and length depends on the length of your rods and how many you’re going to store in it) and get a couple of end caps for it (screw on preferably). Insert rods (without reels), strap the tube to your roof racks or trailer and away you go
        • Make fishing rod holders for beach fishing by getting yourself a 3 – 5 foot length of diameter PVC pipe and cut at an angle on one end to form a spike to dig in the sand. Insert rod, kick back, catch fish… Beautiful!
        • Make storage tubes out of shorter lengths of smaller diameter PVC pipe (with end caps). They’re fantastic for things like your sharp knives and other odds and ends. Be creative!
        • Also, wrap some duct tape around your storage tubes so you don’t have to take a bulky roll of it. Trust me, it always comes in handy when camping

        POOL NOODLES

        • Cut some pool noodles into 6 inch lengths (longer if you like) and slip over all of your guy lines. They will be more noticeable and help prevent people tripping over them
        • Make a fishing rod protector/lure holder from a couple of 7 inch lengths of pool noodle by simply slipping them onto the base and end of your fishing rods. You can then hook your lures onto the base protector if you wish. This idea comes in handy if you’re transporting a few rods and reels together in your car as it stops them from all getting caught up on one another
        • Whack a length of pool noodle around a leg of your portable gazebo, secure it with some duct tape or cable ties (see, I told you these things come in handy) and cut some horizontal slits in for keeping things handy, like a bottle opener, Multi-tool, carabiners, Fishing lures, etc. Once again, you can get pretty creative with this

         

        Well there you have it Posse…

        I do hope you have found these camping hacks and tips useful and I do encourage you to give some a try next time you’re in the great outdoors and as I mentioned at the start, I do appreciate any ideas so if you have one or two you want to throw my way then feel free to do so in the comments section OR if you have any questions, ask away. I’m always happy to help

         

        Until next time….

         

        HAPPY ADVENTURES!

         


        2 Comments

        Rick · 05/02/2020 at

        I knew a lot of these tips but man there were a lot I didn’t know about like building the washing machine, now that is cleaver. Something I always take with me is a magnesium bar striker for starting fires, great if your matches get wet. Thanks for the very useful tips brother.

          Paul Rees · 10/02/2020 at

          Hi Rick

          I’m glad you liked the DIY washing machine. Whoever came up with that is an absolute GENIUS (I unfortunately can’t take credit for that).
          Yeah, a magnesium bar is always a good thing to take camping. I was surprised to find out that magnesium shavings burn white hot and can exceed temperatures of 5000°F so you can usually light up even wet tinder if you need to.

          Thanks for the comment Rick. I’m glad you liked camping hacks and tips
          Paul

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