Camping is a great activity that anyone can partake in. But for those new to camping, trying to figure out what to do while camping can be the hardest thing. How do you take a “plugged-in” generation, and unplug them and still have fun? It’s a difficult challenge that can actually deter potential campers because you never want anyone to not have a good time. Here are some camping tips that can ease the pain from moving a twitter-holic to the outdoors.

First, one of the biggest deterrents is leaving the comfort of one’s own bed. People hear camping and think Jim Bowie and Davy Crocket, sleeping under the stars on the ground, a stump as a pillow and a cow or deer hide as a bed. Worry not, although that sounds absolutely miserable, neither I or anyone I know have ever camped using a log as a pillow. Although there are various degrees of “extreme” that you can tell stories about, I prefer to sleep with a goose down sleeping bag, and my pillow from home. If that’s still too far removed from a bed for you, you can use an air mattress. That’s the best part about camping: you can choose the degree to which you’re wanting to go “outdoors.”

Secondly, not everyone is a hunter or fisherman. Bringing in the kill and hollering across the camp “Honey, dinner’s here!” and flopping down the kill or catch of the day is very cool, it’s not exactly the 21st century. Making sure how you and your fellow campers are going to eat can help ease people into a good time camping. Some people can enjoy the experience of cooking a steak over an open fire on a firepit grill where others would prefer that their food comes packaged and between two pieces of bread. Let your level of comfort dictate what food you bring. Start easy if it’s your first time. Bring sandwiches and pre-packed food in ice chests and just enjoy the away from the norm. If you like it and decide you want to be more adventurous the next time, bring a couple steaks, chicken, or hamburgers and cook them over the fire. Its easy and you feel more in tune with the outdoors. For those looking for true grit camping, find a place that allows you to catch or hunt your own food and go full Crocket.

The third point in getting your homebody to the outdoors in making sure there are activities that are going to hold their or your attention. During the day, the kids can play tag, hide-and-seek, or just enjoy the natural nature trails. If you’re at a camp park, you can more than likely find a jungle gym for the young kids to play on. If you have a kid who’s an animal or bug lover you can make a game out of how many different types of animals or bugs you see. My personal favorites are always the Frisbee or football.  For your more rugged campers, you can pass the time fishing, hiking, canoeing, or take part in one of the many different campsite events that can be located on the camping website. Bring simple games to play at night. My favorites are a deck of cards which are as versatile as a swiss army knife. Playing some battle, go fish, spades, or hearts is a great way to spend quality family time together. Dominos are another easy, enjoyable way to pass the time away as food is cooking. This doesn’t include the all mighty smores’ cooking that has to take place around every fire. Scary stories, or maybe just some “back in my day” wisdom can be passed on around the seamless time around a warm campfire. Enjoy your night out in your tent. Whenever my son and I  cannot camp without my puffy blanket. Find out which blankets works best for you in this Blanket Guide. I found which one works best for me tp help improve my camping, you can also!

Camping is a truly refreshing experience that can help untangle the mess of one’s plugged in life. It can be scary at first, not being in the comfort behind one’s own 4 walls and sleeping in one’s own bed. But all of these steps can ease those “I don’t want to” campers into a fun-filled, bonding experience.

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