21 Helpful Camping Hacks For Roughing It In The Wilderness

Dome tents on overlooking mountain ranges

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Camping – The only reason we all look forward to summer. It's the only time of the year you get to gather around campfires telling stories, making memories, and eating food you wouldn't be caught dead eating in a civilized society. And with the best camping hacks, your experience will be even more unforgettable.

Spending a day or two in the great outdoors doesn't have to be a nightmare.

With the right solutions to keeping bugs away, dealing with the cold, and preparing your meals, your experience will be nothing short of epic.

So let's get started:

Saving On Space And Reducing The Load


person beside a tent

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The last thing you need on a camping trip is a heavy bag especially if there's trekking involved. It will not only make you lag behind but also make it impossible for you to enjoy the little moments.

So how do you save space? Here are some useful space-saving camping hacks.

Make Use Of Your Clothes

A pillow is one of the things that take up too much space. So don't carry one. To make one, all you need is a pillowcase and the clothes you intend to carry on the trip. Stuff the pillowcase with your clothes and voila! You have a pillow.

Make A DIY lantern

If you'd like to have some extra light at night, you don't have to carry a large lamp. All you need for this hack is a headlamp and a clear bottle. To make your lantern, all you have to do is to wrap the head strap around the bottle with the light facing inward, and you have yourself a lantern!

The Best Toiletries Hack

It's a fact that most ladies don't know how to travel light. But what if I told you it's possible to carry everything you need without increasing your load?

One of the best camping hacks on this list is how to deal with your toiletries.

For toothpaste, all you need to do is to make toothpaste dots on a plate and allow it to sit for two to three days. After this, sprinkle some baking soda on it and let it dry. Next, place the dots in a resealable plastic bag. To use, simply put one dot in your mouth, add water and brush away.

For soap, you have two options: you can either carry a multipurpose bar of soap or make mini soap bars to save on space.

You can also make use of contact lens cases by carrying your lotions in them.

An Alternative To Regular Towels

If you've used regular towels while camping before, you know all too well how heavy they can get when wet. Luckily you don't have to deal with this. Microfibre towels dry really fast and don't soak up as much water.

An Excellent Way To Carry Your Eggs

The last thing you'd think of carrying on a camping trip is eggs. They're fragile and would break easily anyway. But who said you can't enjoy a fantastic breakfast outdoors.

For this hack, all you need is a plastic bottle. Pre-scramble the eggs in a bowl and pour the mixture into your bottle.

Meal Preparation


group of people sitting on the ground while cooking egg

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Another thing people struggle with while camping is meal preparation. But with the following incredible camping hacks, preparing your meals will be a breeze.

Let's jump right in.

Cut Down The Cooking Time

After a long day of walking to your camping site, the last thing you want is to spend hours preparing your meals. You can cut down the time by chopping and cutting everything before your trip. That way, all have to do is throw everything into the cooking pot -- how's that for convenience!

Spice It Up

While camping involves mostly making do with what you have, you don't always have to. For instance, just because you're outdoors doesn't mean you should eat bland food. Simply carry all your favorite spices in tic-tac containers, and you're good to go.

Splurge A Little

Just because you are camping doesn't mean you can't enjoy nice things. One of the best camping hacks is using compact cooking sets. You probably thought these were only meant for backpackers, but they can come in handy for camping as well.

The benefit of compact cooking sets is that they're easy to clean, durable, multi-purpose, and easy to stack.

A Genius Alternative To Frying Pans And Plates

If you love bacon and eggs, this will be among your favorite camping hacks from now on. For this incredible hack, all you need is a paper bag.

First, line the bottom of the bag with a few strips of bacon to create a fatty "bacon nest." Next, crack in some eggs and fold the bag over. Attach the bag to a stick and roast over hot coals for about 7 to 10 minutes.

When it's done, eat out of the bag -- tell me that's not one of the best camping hacks you've ever heard!

Pancakes Anyone?

I know what you're thinking, "who would go through the hassle of carrying all the ingredients required to make pancakes on a camping trip?" But you don't have to.

Are you ready for one of the best camping hacks?

All you need to do is to pre-mix your ingredients and pour them in a plastic bag — store in a cooler to preserve them and snip the corner to pour into a griddle for preparation.

Cutting Costs


Man making camp fire

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You don't have to rob the bank to have a fantastic camping trip. With the following hacks, you can have an incredible camping experience on a budget.

Let me show you how:

DIY Fire Starter

Starting a fire is one of the challenges you may experience especially if you're new to camping. But you don't need fancy and expensive fire starters to get your bonfire started.

With trick birthday candles you can start your fire in seconds. And the best part? Candles won't be blown away by the wind.

Other incredible at-home items that are great for starting fires include cotton balls, lint, tampons, a lighter, and paper products like newspapers, toilet paper, and paper towels.

Be Creative With Your Ice

For most people, the obvious choice for ice is ice cubes. It makes sense, but it's not cost-effective. If you want to cut back on costs, consider getting a block of ice for your cooler instead. An ice block has a smaller surface area which means it will take a longer time to melt.

Keeping The Pesky Mosquito's Away


Mosquito repellent spray

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Ah, mosquitos! These pesky bugs can make an incredible night go south very quickly. But they don't have to. Here are some fantastic camping hacks to keep your night buzz and bite-free.

Sage Is A Miracle Worker

Here's an incredible camping hack to keep your campfire mosquito free: burn sage in the fire. Mosquitos hate the smell of sage, so it will be an excellent repellant. And the best part is that the scent will linger on your clothes hence keeping them off throughout the night.

Ticks also hate the smell of sage, so you can rest assured you'll be tick-free as well.

Use DIY Mosquito Repellant Spray

Don't have access to sage? No worries, you can make your own mosquito repellant in a few simple steps.

For this hack, all you need is a combination of any of the following essential oilscitronella, lemongrass, clove, tea tree, rosemary, eucalyptus, cajeput, cedar, catnip, geranium, lavender, and mint.

All you have to do is to mix 100 drops of each oil into a bottle, and you're good to go. Since the oil mixture may irritate your skin, it's best to apply it on your clothes instead of directly on your skin.

The best thing about DIY mosquito repellants is that they don't contain the harsh chemicals typical of store-bought repellants.

Some Jewelry Might Help

No, not the ordinary jewelry you own. We are talking about bug repellant bracelets.

This has got to be the most hassle-free way to keep mosquitos at bay, and one of the most interesting camping hacks yet.

So how do these bracelets work?

They have active ingredients that emit vapors into the air to repel bugs. And you don't even have to wear them for them to work. You can place them on top of a flat surface or hang them somewhere to enjoy their benefits. How cool is that?

Don't Forget The Vinegar

If you hate strong smells, this hack isn't for you. However, if you don't mind, this is a hack that will keep the mosquitos away from you all night.

All you need is some vinegar and a cotton ball. Pour some vinegar on the cotton ball and rub it on your body. The bugs (and some people) will not want to come close to you after this.

If you think having the vinegar on your body is a bit too much, don't worry, there's another option. You can rub the vinegar on table surfaces and other surfaces around you to repel insects as well.

Keeping Warm


Couple feet mountains view from tent

image source: unsplash.com via Alí Díaz

Nothing ruins a good camping trip like staying up all night because you're freezing. We've all been there. But this doesn't have to be the case. You can stay warm and cozy in your sleeping bag and have a restful night.

Doubt it? Here are some hacks you'll want to try.

The Best Camping Investment Yet

I don't know about you, but my feet freeze the most and make it impossible for me to sleep. But after coming across air activated warmers, freezing has become a thing of the past.

All you have to do to take advantage of this amazing invention is to place it inside your sleeping bag and enjoy hours of warmth. You're welcome!

Tag Your Bae Along

Nothing will warm you better than a human body. So, if you're thinking of leaving your bae behind, bring him or her along. You won't regret it. I promise!

And for the singles, it may not hurt to get to know your tentmate really, really well. You'll get not only a good night of warmth but also memories you can cherish forever.

A Weird Yet Effective Hack

It's the simplest and weirdest hacks that yield the best results, and we have no doubt you'll love the hack we are about to share.

Ready?

We call this hack the "crotch bottle."

For this hack, you'll need a hot water bottle. Fill it up and place it between your thighs. You see, there is an artery between your thighs that's crucial for regulating body heat. Therefore, take advantage of it and enjoy a cold-free night -- a great hack for the shy individuals afraid to befriend their tentmates.

Splurge On Great Camping Gear

Well, this isn't exactly a camping hack, but I have to mention it. It's a no brainer that you'll have a better experience with more expensive camping gear compared to cheap ones.

I'm not saying you should go for the most expensive gear. Just make sure you analyze the features to ensure you're getting a good product that will last you longer and keep you warm for a longer time.

Lay Off The booze

Yes, drinking is one of the things that make camping fun, but if you want to keep warm you might need to avoid it.

You see, the initial warmth you feel after taking a shot of whiskey backfires very quickly for two reasons. One, alcohol dehydrates you, and this lowers your body temperature. The other reason is that alcohol may make you feel warmer than you actually are.

And let's not forget the danger of passing out in potentially dangerous places.

Remember These Camping Hacks On Your Next Camping Trip


Man sitting beside a tent

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As you can see, you don't have to spend a fortune to have a great time in the great outdoors. You can use items at your disposal to cut back on costs and find some clever ways to save on time and space and keep warm at night.

So don't forget to try some of these hacks on your next camping trip. And remember to share your experience with us.

Which hack is your favorite on this list and which one do you think we left out? Please share your views in the comments below. We love hearing from you.

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