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In 2020, nearly 50 million people went camping in the United States.
Statistics show that approximately 47.94 million participated in camping-related activities. The youngest campers are six years old.
The COVID-19 pandemic has been a key contributor to these surging numbers these past two years. There were 10.1 million households that did this outdoor activity for the first time. Meanwhile, RV ownership grew by 2.6 million.
Living outdoors temporarily is the perfect way to get out of the house and still be socially distanced from others. The popularity of camping has been growing for some time now. It offers benefits beyond not catching a highly contagious and potentially life-threatening virus.
Going camping has been known to contribute to mental and physical health.
It is an activity that reduces stress. It gives individuals the opportunity to change up their routines and relax. The change of scenery makes it easier to clear the mind.
Spending time like this outdoors also allows people to connect with nature. It fosters an appreciation of the earth and all its bounty.
Camping is versatile too. It appeals to solo adventurers who want to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city. It’s also a great group activity. Families and friends can bond while pitching a tent or roasting marshmallows over a campfire.
Finally, camping is cheap and convenient. First-time campers don’t need to spend thousands of dollars to have a great time. Plus, camping sites are everywhere in the United States. Finding a good one that’s an easy distance from home won’t be too difficult.
How to Camp Better
When exploring or staying outdoors, it’s a must to “leave nothing but footprints.” Keeping the area free from trash is the bare minimum, but there’s always more that people can do to camp more sustainably.
Safety is also a priority, especially for ladies who want to go on solo camping trips. With that, here are some helpful tips to try.
Bring a Bike
This is great if you’re opting to camp in an RV or have chosen a campsite that’s not too far from where you live.
Riding a bike allows you to cover more ground when exploring the surrounding area. It’s also suitable for running errands to get food and other supplies while lessening your carbon footprint.
A bike will let you escape intruders a lot quicker if they happen to invade your campsite. Opt for an e-bike over traditional models if you don’t have one. An electric bike is better for first-time users because it can be easier and safer to ride, and it allows you to speed up without exerting yourself.
Pack Your Snacks and Meals
There are several advantages when preparing your food for a camping trip.
First, you have control over portions and ingredients. If you have food sensitivities, you don’t need to worry about having a severe allergy attack when the nearest hospital could be miles away.
Second, you reduce waste. Storing food inside reusable containers and wraps means you’re not throwing empty cans, wrappers, and plastic bottles in the bin. And that’s always a good move for the environment.
Third, you save money. If you plan your meals and treats, you’ll have the time to shop for fresher yet cheaper produce.
And fourth, you get to eat the food you love, prepared in the way you like them.
Get Biodegradable Toiletries
Many commercial soap and toothpaste products contain triclosan, which can pollute water and harm marine life. So be mindful when buying toiletries. You can find biodegradable toiletries at the nearest grocery store. There are also tons of options online, especially on eco-friendly retail sites.
Keep in mind that the fewer and more natural the ingredients, the better! Always check the product labels. Look for words like “100 percent organic,” “all-natural,” and “biodegradable.”
Use, Rent, Repair
The cost of camping gear can add up fast if you buy everything brand new. Consider other options before making the trip to an outdoor shop. For example, if you have a tent with a hole or two, get it repaired. You can also rent camping stoves or purchase a used headlamp.
It will save you money and lessen the product impact on the campground you’ll be staying at.
Make Cleanup a Game
Small children might be too young to understand and appreciate the concept of sustainable camping. Still, there are ways to get them involved. If you turn cleanup into a game of sorts, they’ll become more willing participants.
With the help of reusable trash bags, you can send them on a “quest” to rid the campsite or even a park trail of trash in exchange for a reward. Kids will eagerly get involved in activities if done in a fun way.
Have Solar Charging Devices and Rechargeable Batteries
A well-lit camping area is a must for safety purposes. That being said, have solar charging devices and rechargeable batteries on-hand.
Using rechargeable batteries also prevents you and your family from creating unnecessary waste. A pro tip is to use rechargeable batteries to power up your lanterns. An extra headlamp also makes excellent storage for rechargeable batteries.
Camping should always be a fun experience. However, it’s important to never let your guard down completely. Be alert and observant of your surroundings. Pay attention to your body, listen to what it needs, and how it reacts to the environment. Get plenty of sleep, and go easy on the alcoholic beverages.
Camping is an excellent outdoor activity for many reasons. It promotes better mental health by clearing the mind and boosting. Serene surroundings also get campers in a relaxed state.
Camp activities offer a way for families and friend groups to bond. It is a convenient and cost-effective way to create memories that will last a lifetime.
A successful camping trip means planning ways to have a safe and fun time without enormous impact on the environment. The tips above should allow you and your fellow campers to do just that.