June is national camping month so get out there! Here are 23 essential items to get you started. There are so many different ways to camp so this is just a general list (i.e., I know you won’t be backpacking 10 miles in with a big rocking chair). I also usually like to bring a pistol and fly rod but the law varies depending on where you’re camping so check those out first. Finally, not sure why the ax and the pocket knife didn’t show up in the inventory list below but a good ax or hatchet is great to have and a bringing a good pocket knife goes without saying. Happy campers!

Because, coffee.

Blue top
A lot of great camping sites have access to good drinking water but in case you’re venturing out somewhere where you need to bring your own this baby can really hold its H20. It’s heavy so best for shorter hike-in or drive-in locations .

Just bought this myself from Best Made (one of my favorite sites/companies ever). I mean, its brass, heavy yet compact, ultra bright, and has a USB charger! Deal.

On my wish list.

I own several of these exact kits. I keep one in my car at all times. You never know, best to be prepared… especially in the wild.

Great tent for a great price.

We have an older version of this but this updated model is pretty nice as the pieces come apart = more functionality.

Playing Cards
DO NOT go camping without playing cards. Just don’t do it.

Yes, you’re going to need a sleeping bag. 

Palisades Pack
Goose uses this pack often. Sometimes I put it on him when we’re not camping just to make him feel like he has a job (ha!). Really is nice when camping with dogs to put them to work (even if it’s just to carry their own food and water).

Primus Profile Dual
We (he) cooked some seriously gourmet meals on this stove last fall during our trip to Big Bend

Trust me, this is an essential. You may think you have a nice spot and don’t need a sleeping bad … but then you wake up at 3am stiff as a rock. Oh, and with a rock in your lumbar. 

Wish list. 

Happy place.

Petzl Tikka R Plus
One of the best headlamps. If you’re going to be doing any work at night while camping (like cooking dinner) a good headlamp will make a huge difference.

This is a modern lantern featuring USB charging ports. We often use our classic Coleman oil lantern but this one definitely could come in handy as well and, if you aren’t used to lighting the lamp lanterns, get a modern one. 

Suunto MCA-D IN
You may never need one but when you do, you really do. 

MSR 2 Person Mess Kit
Its important to bring food vessels that are easy to clean and pack.

A classic that is still really useful (and comfortable!).

UCO Stormproof Match Kit
Probably one of the most essential camping items of all time: waterproof matches. Order a bunch and stash them everywhere. Like a compass, you may never need them but when you do, you really do.

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