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Patrick Kelley

7 Things You Need When Car Camping

car camping

We love a good camping trip. But we get that sometimes you can’t go all out and hike miles into the mountains to find your campsite. Sometimes the best camping trips are the car camping trips, but that’s only if you’re fully prepared.

Here are the top 7 things you need when car camping:

1. A good car. This might sound obvious, but don’t make the mistake of bringing a bad car on your trip. The last thing you want on your car camping trip is for your car to break down or have any other issues. Make sure you’re taking the most reliable car you have.

2. Plenty of space. Make sure you have plenty of space in your car (a large SUV, truck, or van is ideal), and also around your campsite. Pick a spot where you’ll have plenty of space to set up basecamp and make it feel like home. You won’t want to feel cramped or stuck when camping.

3. Somewhere to sleep. Either you’re using your car as an addition to your campsite, or you’re sleeping right inside your car. Whichever way you go, make sure you have a nice, comfortable place to sleep. You don’t have to settle for just throwing some blankets in the backseat; a solid sleeping pad will make any spot comfortable.

4. Cooking tools. A stove, some utensils, pots and pans, even spices… You need some good cooking items for a solid camping trip, and since you have your car for added storage space, you don’t have to skimp out here. Mission 24: Camp Chef should give you everything you need.

5. Food. We couldn’t talk about cooking without talking about food. And remember you can actually eat well when camping. Whether you go the freeze-dried route or the “real stuff” route, you have plenty of options. Check out some of our top tips for the camp chef here.

6. Water. Just because you have your car with you (and could technically leave your campsite to go buy more water), doesn’t mean you shouldn’t come prepared with plenty of water. Treat this like any other camping trip and act as if you don’t have a vehicle or a way to get to more water. Pack plenty of water bottles or a water reservoir, or grab some of these tools to help purify your water and make it drinkable.

7. First aid. Again, don’t assume that you’re safer or less likely to get hurt just because you have your car. Yes, you can get to a hospital a little easier if you have your car, but you still don’t want a minor wound to ruin your trip. Pack accordingly.

At the end of the day, make sure you're having fun. A good camping trip is as good as you make it, so go into it with a positive attitude and an eagerness for awesome time. When's the last time you went car camping? Tell us about it on our Facebook page!

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