the art of one-night camping trips

there’s definitely an art to it. mainly, the goal is to create a system where packing and then unpacking is smooth and easy. which is hard to do and to be honest, i haven’t figured it all out just yet but i’ve made it my project to find out how to do it.

friends of mine use to have in their trunk a box of equipment and some clothing (older stuff they don’t mind getting worn and dirty) all set in their trunk. maybe even a sleeping bag or two as well. when the mood hit, they would just toss in the tent and some food, keeping the meals really easy.

returning from their weekend trip, all it took was to store any leftover food and do the laundry.

easier said then done when it comes to just taking care of yourself. throw in a kid, a dog and a husband who likes to over-pack, and you’ve got yourself quite a handful.

still, i’m determined to make it easier because while there is still work involved, i loved camping this weekend. and i really want to do more of it.

i made some mental notes this time around in areas we can cut back on and improve on. when we unpacked, i asked doug to keep this one box out with supplies we have at home, that we can keep for future camping trips. i’ll be building on that box. at the moment, we’re still borrowing some utensils we have at home and then having to unpack them and store them away for daily use. so, i’ll be looking at keeping a set just for camping, along with other supplies.

food is an area we need to improve on. we always created ‘gourmet’ meal plans and we have to let go of that when we’re just going for a night or two. it might mean sandwiches, ramen noodles and/or kraft mac ‘n cheese with chopped hot dogs. and while there’s nothing like fried eggs and bacon/sausage in the morning, the time it takes to make and clean up forces us to not get a chance to explore the park until closer to noon when the day is starting to get hot. cereal, milk and fruit will have to do.

and a bag of rain gear should always be packed with some fleece for unexpected cold nights – all just left in the trunk. picnic blankets can be left in the trunk as well.

there’s a lot we can do that doesn’t need repacking each time.

anyway, we did have a great weekend regardless of how short it was. i will write a separate post about it with photos later on this week.


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