First, the whole family gets involved together in making out your camping check list. Everyone’s excitement and anticipation will increase. Making out your check list months ahead is one way of really starting your vacation early.
Second, check lists help you organize and pack your camping gear. The check list reminds you what to bring, and where to pack it. When you are getting ready to go, you can easily see what errands you need to run in order to pick up those last few items.
Third, check lists help you remember to take everything with you. No one likes to get to camp and find out they forgot some important item.
Fourth, check lists help you remember what not to bring next time. Every trip is a little different, so make notes on your check list about what camping gear you used, what you didn’t, and what you wished you had taken. This lets you plan to make your next camping trip even better.
Finally, good check lists change continually. As your experience grows you will want different items. For instance, you might decide that a propane stove is better for your next trip than cooking over a fire. Other times, you might leave the stove at home and bring a dutch oven to use over the fire.
These check lists are excellent starting points for your trip. Print them out, and then add or delete gear from the list as you plan your trip.
Car Camping Check Lists
The car camping check list is for when you camp next to your car, or only a short distance from the car. Car camping is typical for most visitors at state and national parks. Car camping is also for when you are traveling, and stop at a commercial campground for the night.
Because you have a car, you get to carry extra gear for all your fun activities. You can also leave some things home, like spare batteries, since you can generally ride to a store.
See Car Camping Check Lists
Canoe Camping Check Lists
Canoe camping is great fun. It offers more privacy and solitude. Many times, you get to see more wildlife. You also enjoy a sense of adventure, and a feeling of accomplishment as you travel from one campsite to another.
The canoe camping check lists have some extra gear since you are camped far from your car. You may also need to bring some basic repair kits for the canoe, and other camping gear.
See Canoe Camping Check Lists
Day Pack Check List
The day pack check list covers the items you might need while away from your base camp. You can only carry just so much, yet you must be a little prepared for what might happen until you return to camp.
The actual items you carry will depend a great deal on what you might be doing during the day. If you like to take photographs, you would certainly need to take your camera, film, and perhaps some different lenses. If you are in an area where rain might be of concern, you should have along a rain coat. If you are in a hot and drier area, you would want to carry extra water. And then don’t forget those snacks.
See Day Pack Check List
First Aid Kit Check Lists
The first aid kit check list is one of your most important. It helps you prepare for those minor mishaps that happen frequently, so your fun can continue without delays.
The first aid kit check list also reminds you to pack all those important personal medications you might forget. You don’t want to rush home or call your doctor because you forgot something as important as this.
There are two first aid kit check lists.
A personal first aid kit is for carrying with you everywhere. It covers the most common problems like cuts, blisters, burns and scrapes.
A family first aid kit is generally left in your car or at base camp. It is a bit more complete than a personal first aid kit, and is therefore used for more serious, or more persistent, troubles.
See First Aid Kit Check Lists
Survival Kit Check List
A survival kit is like insurance. You have it, but you plan on never needing it. Having a basic survival kit can mean the difference between having a frustrating day, or having a disastrous day. In more populated areas, like when camping at a commercial campground, you probably won't need much. Maybe just a little extra sunscreen and water. But in more remote, wooded or mountainous areas, everyone in your family should carry a basic survival kit when venturing away from camp.
See Survival Kit Check List
Repairs and Spares
Lots of odds and ends for fixing things like lanterns and tents end up packed in small bags called kits. Tool kits; tent repair kits; stove and lantern spare parts; sewing kit; canoe and motor repair kits.
See Repairs and Spares Kits Check List
Fun and Games Check List
You won't want to forget all those toys to play with. Games for kids; music; field guides or novels; games for a rainy day; or just a game to spend a relaxing hour with one child.
Always take some toys – both for the kids and for you.
See Fun and Games Check List
Off Highway Driving
Taking your car, SUV or pickup truck off the highway and into the back country involves some special planning.
Most times, this means driving on gravel roads. This is very demanding on your vehicle. The tires and suspension get a real workout, so you need to prepare for trouble. You can’t always rely on the auto club to come help.
See Off Highway Vehicle Check List.