Spring is right around the corner, and so is the season... my favorite season...

Camping season.

One thing I started a few years ago was keeping a "camping bin." This is the rock-solid plastic bin that takes a beating and holds all of my camping gear.

In this bin, my wife and I keep the stuff we only use when we go camping. We try to always keep it stocked, so when one of us says "want to go up north for the weekend?," we are ready.

No need to race around the house looking for a can of bug spray and rope. We have that bin loaded and ready at all times.

At the beginning of every summer, we restock and evaluate what we need more of.

That got us thinking, "does everyone bring glow sticks and a can opener?" Over the years, we have learned so much about camping through other people. Camping is a community where you can always get "better" or more comfortable as you experience more camping trips, environments, and situations.

To that point, I have learned to bring some items camping that most do not. You probably bring some items that I would never think of.

So, below is a list of some must-have camping items. I tried to list a few unique ones instead of some of the more obvious ones.

To cover the basics and get your camping checklist set, check out the most obvious choices, runner-ups, and all the necessities to bring while camping this summer.

The Basics:

Cooler, beer/drinks, snacks, food for the night, bug spray, flashlight, sleeping bags.

 Hand Sanitizer, soap, tent, games to play (frisbee, cards, croquet), chairs, towels.

Less Basic, Very Important:

   If you are cooking on your own: can opener, oven mitts, rack to go on top of the fire.

Percolator and coffee grounds, knives, cutting board, cast iron pans, reusable bottle.

Fishing pole, tackle box, extra line, pocket knife, net.


Hammock (with straps), bike and helmet, citronella candles, bear spray, whistle, flare.

Pen and paper (seeing birds, animals, etc.), binoculars, portable/solar charger, lanterns.

A watch. Yes, you may lose cell service. Enjoy it.

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