Beginner Camper Tips

Are you a first-time camper? I only started camping within the last couple years, but I am by no means an expert camper (and I don’t have the luxury of an RV yet, but hopefully in the future). I looked up some good tips for beginners if you’re a tent camper and new to the camping scene. These ideas could come in handy for anyone though. By the way, Hickory Hollow Campground is a great place for beginner campers (or any campers really!)

The tips I am going to share are things that I have taken into consideration while camping and I hope that they can be helpful to other campers as well. This will hopefully make your planning and camping trip less stressful and much more relaxing.

Whenever we camp, we only plan for a weekend. So these tips are directed more towards short stays, but can be adapted if you plan to stay somewhere for more than just a weekend.

Tip #1
Plan Ahead

I am OCD when it comes to planning for trips, even if it is just for a short weekend trip. I don’t like waiting until the last minute, because I know that I will forget something (usually it’s important too.) It’s stressful to wait until the last minute to plan and pack (unless it’s a spur of the moment trip.) So to make it easier on you and everyone else, plan what you will need to take before you leave. I personally love to make lists. This way I can physically see what I need to pack and I can mark it off as I go.

If there is anything that you are able to pack ahead of time, that you aren’t going to need before you leave for the trip, then PACK IT! If you do this the weekend (or a few days) before your trip, that is less you will have to worry about when you are getting ready to head out! Some items you may be able to pack ahead of time are: bedding, tents, bags, cooking gear, and any non-perishable food items you plan to take. Organize it and have it ready to go, so you aren’t scrambling as the last minute. If you are planning to pack any perishable food – try to buy it before the day of the trip so you can avoid stopping while traveling and you can pack them into coolers on the day of. For the items you can’t pack ahead of time, make a list that you will see or even set a reminder on your phone so you aren’t forgetting anything!

Tip #2
Pack Light

I am so terrible at this, but that’s why it is a good tip! Try to avoid packing things with the “just in case” mindset. Take time to think about what you will be doing while you are away. There’s no need to pack extra activities or equipment whenever you won’t have time to use them, so think about what you have time to do during your short getaway and if you have the space for what you plan to do.

Tip #3
Keep Your Menu Simple

If you are planning a trip with a few groups of people, the best option is to share the meal planning. Split the responsibilities up so each group is in charge of a meal (or however you see fit to divide up the work.) That way each family is in charge of packing, prepping, and making a meal and all the work isn’t put on one person. This means less packing and more sharing of the preparation load when it comes to meals and the best thing of all – less work for EVERYONE! This is how we do our camping, each “family” going is in charge of certain parts of our meals and it makes it much easier on everyone and if there is anything specific we want aside from the meals we handle it ourselves.

If you’re camping by yourself (or in a single group), choose meals that you are comfortable making. You’re camping to relax, not give yourself more work to do. Avoid any meals that cause you to slave over the campfire for hours, making it less likely for you to enjoy yourself.

Tip #4
Check the Weather

This is a tip for any time that you are planning to go camping. Weather can be a pain when you’re camping since you are spending the majority of the time outside! I know that it’s not always 100% accurate and if it is bad weather, it could cause your entire trip to change. So always check the weather ahead of time (mid-week before you trip is usually good.) I also check again the day before in case I need to pack anything to prepare for some types of weather that are manageable while camping.

Tip #5
Stay Close to Home

This tip isn’t for everyone, but I think it’s perfect for beginner campers. This is something that I personally do (who am I kidding, I have ONLY camped at Hickory Hollow, so I may be a little biased…lol.) If you’re local to Rockwood, PA then this is the perfect option for you to get away for a weekend too! By staying closer to home, there is much less stress about traveling. You don’t have to worry as much about arrival and departure time, and it makes planning a breeze! You can get outdoors quicker and relax sooner (even if it’s just a short 1-2 day stay).

If you’re not local to Hickory Hollow Campground, then look into campground in your area and if you’re able to book ahead then do that! It makes it easier to secure your spot to ensure that you have a place to stay. If you don’t know exactly where it is located, then take some time before your trip to look up the directions and familiarize yourself, so there is less stress while traveling.

These are just a few tips to hopefully make our beginner campers feel a little less stressed about camping and Hickory Hollow is the perfect place for beginners! We have lots of things to do, plus it peaceful and relaxing here 24/7. If you want to know more about our campground, follow us on our social media accounts and Youtube Channel!

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