A child reads a book near a tent.

Camping season is among us, and whether you’re going out for the first time with kids this year, or you’re heading out for another season, we’ve compiled our top 10 tips for camping with kids. Camping with kids can be intimidating, but we want to make sure our top 10 tips help you find easier and simpler ways to get out camping wtih kids. Here are our Top 10 Tips for Camping with Kids:

This blog post is in sponsorship with Morrison Outdoors

10 Tips for Camping with Kids

Make sure you have a warm and comfortable sleeping bag for everyone

One of the most important things for a successful camping trip is making sure everyone is having a good night sleep, all the way from Baby up to Mom & Dad. Good quality sleeping bags can be incredibly difficult to come across, but we have been introduced to Morrison Outdoors, and will never be going back! Morrison is making waves in the world of Sleeping Bags with bags that fit children as young as 6 months. 

Some of our favourite features include:

  • Inverted Zipper – Zips open from the bottom for easy diaper changes.
  • Draft Tube – Keeps warm air from escaping behind the zipper.
  • Enclosed Footbox – Fully-enclosed footbox that keeps the little toes nice and cozy.
  • Machine Washable- The best feature of all! Wash at home for quick, easy clean-up after a weekend in the dirt.

You can pick between down or synthetic material when deciding on your sleeping bag, and they even have added Adult Sleeping Bags to their line-up! Whether you’re heading into the backcountry, or staying in the front country, Morrison Outdoors is a great option for staying warm at night on adventures. 

Use code FREECANADA to get free shipping from Canada until 3/31. 

Click here to view Morrison Outdoors Sleeping Bags

A dad holds his young child, who is wearing a Morrison Outdoors Gear sleeping bag, while hiking.

Practice at home

Before the season starts, set up all of your gear at home and do a practice run. This is a great way to make sure you know how to use all your gear, to avoid frustration when it’s the real deal, and to make sure there are no repairs that need to be done to your gear. 

When you do your practice run, this is where you can identify tasks that your little one’s are able to help with once you arrive at the campground. Some simple tasks you may practice are setting up their own sleeping area, setting up camp chairs, or helping set up the tent. Michelle, our social media lead, has a pop-up tent that all you need to do is push the poles – so this is a great option for a piece of gear that they can help set up.

Arrive when it is still daylight out

The last thing you want to do when camping with kids is set up camp in the dark. Be sure to plan your arrival so it is not dark. Don’t forget to pack snacks for your journey to the campground!

Pack along *good* food

Just because you are camping, doesn’t mean you have to change what you are eating or feeding your children! You can still make so many different delicious meals. It can be difficult to get kids to eat when there is so much going on, so make sure you pack things that you know they enjoy and will pique their interest when being served. 

Click here to read our blog post “Camping Meal Ideas with Kids”

Always bring the '10 Essentials'

The concept of the “Ten Essentials” was formalized in 1974, according to Mountaineers. The idea, however, dates all the way back to the 1930’s, when it was included in climbing and mountaineering courses! Adventurers from around the world acknowledge that when heading outdoors, there are at least ten items that are deemed necessary for survival.

Here are the 10 Essential Items we pack along: 

  • Navigation and/or Satellite Communication
  • Illumination – this could be a headlamp
  • First-aid kit – make sure you have enough materials for the amount of days you are gone
  • Fire
  • Knife
  • Shelter
  • Sun Protectoin
  • Extra food
  • Extra water
  • Extra clothes

Plan activities for while you're there

Hiking, biking, fishing, and swimming – there are a lot of fun family camping activities to enjoy. A campground’s web page will give you some specific ideas for spending time together playing. They will also provide a calendar of family events, like Junior Ranger programs, if available. Some campgrounds even offer bike trails, a swimming pool, nature trails, or mini golf.

Be sure to do your research on available amenities at your camground

Three kids sit on a dock on a beautiful summers day.

Pack games & gear incase it rains

Sometimes when we go camping, we predict that the weather is going to be beautiful, but Mother Nature has other plans. Make sure you pack enough entertainment in case this happens, as well as rain gear! 

Board games, cards, a small table and chairs can be all you need to enjoy the rain. If the rain isn’t coming down too hard, you can even try puddle-jumping. 

Do a safety sweep & chat when you arrive

There can be many hazards around your campground, and you should be aware of them all. Once you are aware of all the hazards, have a sit down chat with your children so they are aware of what they are as well. Hazards that should be talked about is Fire Safety – the fire itself, as well as the axe if it is being left near the tent, or your propane fuel source. Point out any roots or trip hazards in your campground and offer routes around them.

If you are camping near a lake, set firm boundaries about swimming rules. If you are near a road, set firm boundaries about when they are allowed to leave your campground vicinity. Safety is incredibly important when you are out camping.

Know that not everything will go as planned

Not everything will go as planned – and that is ok! Hiccups happen, and we just take them as they come. No matter how much gear you pack, or how much planning you do, something always has the possibility of going array, but that is ok. 

If you go in with the expectation that not everything will be perfect, it can lead to a lot less disappointment if mishaps happen. As you get further into camping season, you can learn from the mishaps and change certain areas of camping where you see fit. Camping with kids can be easy, it can be fun, and it is worth it. 

Have a positive attitude

From start to finish! Be enthusiastic about camping from the moment you begin planning at home, and practicing with your gear. If your little ones see you excited about something, it is likely going to rub off on them. 

Create excitement about going camping, being outdoors, and embracing dirt. The more positive we are from the start, the smoother the entire camping process of camping with kids will be. 

Do you feel prepared to go camping with kids, now? These are our top 10 tips for camping with kids, and we are so grateful you took the time to read today’s blog post. Camping Season is so close, so feel free to bookmark this blog post to refer back to is as you begin planning your season of camping with kids. Please be sure to follow us on Instagram at @kidswhoexplore and use #KidsWhoExplore and #KWE for your chance to be featured on our social channels. Happy Adventuring, friends!

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