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Take the Stress Out of Camping With These Hacks


Planning a camping trip? The last thing you need is yet another guide on camping basics, such as pitching a tent or building a fire. You need a guide that tells you how to repel mosquitos and find great deals on sites. How to keep your home safe while you’re gone, and how to save on food. This guide tells you how to do all that and more. These are the camping hacks you didn’t learn in the scouts or from any book; it’s expert advice designed to take the stress out of camping.

Keep Your Home Safe

Most burglars live nearby their victims, and learn their target’s habits and could even be watching when you pack up and leave on a camping trip. A house sitter is a good idea and can thwart would-be robbers. Or, just fake that you have a house sitter. Have a neighbor act like they’re staying at your home, or say goodbye to someone who isn’t there and set your lamps to a timer (so, they turn on and off at somewhat regular intervals). It’s a good idea to get a homeowners or renters insurance quote before any vacation, so if anything happens (robbery, natural disaster, etc.), you’re protected.

Find a Great Campsite Deal

It’s possible to camp for free or very cheap. Free campsites, including beautiful state parks and lands, can be found using the search tool at Keep in mind, free and cheap sites are typically no frills. If you need bathrooms, including showers, check the reviews. Some sites may not have these amenities, but some will.

Repel Mosquitos

Chemical repellents aren’t great for your skin or the environment. Although there are many ways to naturally repel mosquitos, garlic, sage, and citron candles are probably the easiest methods. Burn sage often, and the little buggers will stay away. For your skin, use garlic. Rub it on your skin directly, or mix it with water for a spray on repellent. Citron candles have two functions, providing light and repelling pesky mosquitos.

Keep Your Beer Cold

Instead of dumping ice in your cooler and creating a huge mess, freeze jugs of water instead. This method keeps everything just as cold as ice would, stays frozen longer, and when the water melts you can drink it. To quickly cool down a beer (or any other drink) wrap it in a wet paper towel then place it into the cooler next to the frozen jug. If the beer is too cold and you don’t have a koozie, wrap it in a bandana.

Save Money on Groceries

The secret to saving money on camp food is to eat healthy. If you avoid carcinogenic nitrates, such as lunch meat, you’ll feel fuller longer and natural foods are cheaper. Create trail mixes that are rich in nuts, dried fruits, and dark chocolates. Pre-cut vegetables are another low-cost snack option. Avoid chips and cookies, as these foods tend to make you feel full only for a short time.

Dinners will cost a bit more, but not so much more. Kitchen Stewardship notes that you may be tempted to buy cheap hotdogs, but you should avoid this temptation. Instead, create foil dinners at home (such as sausage and potatoes or fajitas). This will save you time and effort at the camp, as well as provide you with a more nutritious dinner.

Repel Ticks

Skip the chemical tick repellents and make your own instead. Ticks hate vinegar, so this is a simple recipe. Just mix two cups of distilled white vinegar and a single cup of water to a spray bottle. When using this on your pets, be careful not to get it in their eyes.

So, there you have it, several camping hacks that can keep you safe and save you money. Employ these strategies on your next camping trip, and hey if you do need help starting a fire, bring some lint with you. It’s a lightweight and simple way to start a fire fast.


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