For most people, camping is a great way to get away from everyday life, unplug, and relax. However, just because you’re temporarily leaving society behind doesn’t mean you have to ditch all your creature comforts. If your goal is to get much-needed rest, modern gear is a great way to facilitate that.

Useful Kinds of Gadgets

When you buy gear to prepare yourself for an outdoor adventure, it’s essential to consider the type of camping you’ll be doing, the kind of risks you’ll face, and the environment you’ll camp in. Your final camping checklist will depend on these factors.

Types of Camping

Traveling to Louisiana state park campsites means your car is always nearby throughout the trip. If an emergency or bad weather strikes, you have quick access back to safety and don’t have to worry as much about how much weight you’re carrying.

On the other hand, Backcountry camping involves taking a tent, backpack, sleeping bag, food, and other essentials with you onto a trail or into the woods. Because you’re carrying gear miles into the rugged wilderness, you’ll necessarily trend towards lightweight equipment. Taking a 12-pound camp stove for car camping is a much different experience compared to backcountry hauling.

Camping tends to involve some sacrifices of amenities you usually take for granted at home. Though many state park campgrounds have potable water, restrooms, and showers, backwoods camping is all about what you take with you. Consider what you’re willing to live without when packing up for the trip.

1. Pocket Torch

No matter what type of camping you prefer, it’s essential to start and maintain a fire to keep yourself warm and fed. There’s no reason you have to rub two sticks together when you bring a waterproof torch lighter. Some devices only require a basic disposable lighter, extending the life by more than 50 percent and encasing it in a windproof implement. It’s not necessarily a make-or-break gadget, but it’s hard to argue against the convenience one offers.

2. Headlamp

Taking a flashlight is undoubtedly a good idea for a camping trip, but most require you to use your hands — or worse, your teeth. Instead of dealing with that inconvenience, you can bring a flashlight on an elastic band that wraps around your head. A good headlamp will have IPX8 water resistance to protect against wet environmental conditions and enough power for hundreds of hours of use. If you’re venturing out on a multi-day journey, buy a headlamp that supports nighttime exploration.

3. Radiant Heater

Even if you bring a high-quality tent, the woods can get pretty cold at night — especially during the fall or winter months. If you like to go camping during the colder months of the year, it may be worth bringing a heater along for the ride.

When shopping for a heater, look for its range and how many BTUs of heat it can generate. If you opt for a propane-fueled heater, be sure it’s appropriate to use indoors. Other features to look for include automatic shutoff and the use of lightweight materials.

4. Solar Panel Charger

Nature doesn’t come with any outlets, but you can take advantage of the massive energy source from the sky every day. With a solar panel charger in hand, you’ll be well-equipped to harness the sun to power all of your high-tech camping gadgets. As a general rule of thumb, the larger the charger, the longer it will take to power it fully. Some chargers work faster than others.

5. Portable Air Conditioner

If you’re staying in the woods for multiple days, bringing an air conditioner can help you cool down during the hot summer months. It may not be necessary, but a portable air conditioner is truly a godsend when you can’t find any other source of relief in the wild.

A personal air conditioner is more than a simple swamp cooler; it contains an actual built-in A/C unit that sucks in the hot air in your tent and cools the area for several hours per charge. The lighter weight of the unit, the easier it’ll be to take with you.

This list is a non-exhaustive account of high-tech gadgets that can bring you much-needed relief in a harsh environment.

By Erica Buteau

Change Agent. Daydream Believer. Maker. Creative. Likes love, peace and Jeeping. Dislikes winter, paper cuts and war. She/Her/Hers.

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