Filed under: Comfort at Camp, Gadget Reviews, Outdoor Recreation & Hiking, Preparation & Readiness, Safety on the Road, Uncategorized
The 10 Best Camping Gadgets (Don’t leave home without them!)
I was recently asked by a fellow camper, “What are the 10 gadgets you consider most essential for camping?”
I wanted to respond with items like an air conditioner, clean bed off the ground, TV and remote, coffeepot and ice maker. But, I was quickly informed that those were not considered “gadgets” (or tools) and would not be acceptable.
“This is serious!”, he admonished. So, giving it only a little thought (and very little at that) I did my best to reply with what I consider my ten most essential camping gadgets.
Actually, my list could have been much, much longer – perhaps a hundred or more items. But, having to limit it to ten, this is what I came up with. See if you agree and perhaps add your own essential gadgets in the comments section.
#1 – Duct Tape
You can make anything from duct tape. A coffee cup (yuck!), rope, patch a leaky tent or awning, start a campfire, fashion a plate or bowl, strap pants cuffs tight to keep out ticks (leave some sticky side showing), fix a rip in the seat of your pants, fashion a bandage, stop a leak in an air mattress and thousands of more handy tasks. Never leave home without it!
I’ve never been very good with rubbing two sticks together or hitting flint on steel. In fact, my success with matches has been miserable. Just last week I burned my thumb and forefinger nails off trying to light the pilot on our gas oven with a match – a task that is virtually impossible.
#3 – My pocket pen knife.
It only has two blades – well, only one now since I broke the other off trying to open a tin can. Still, it is a tool I am constantly using to dig, screw, cut, scrape and pick at most everything. It is best to keep it well sharpened so you won’t cut yourself!
#4 – My pocket MiniMag flashlight.
It isn’t much, only the size of a Chap Stick tube. But, the light from the single AAA battery and bright, focusing bulb are invaluable when stuck on a dark night, looking for the keys that rolled under the truck, or finding your way to the bathroom in the dark.
#5 – 1% Hydrocortisone cream.
Skin irritations are inevitable – they come from bugs and plants, not to mention boiling water and burned down matches. Fortunately, the soothing relief of this amazing steroid can make a miserable burning and itching a lot less miserable.
#6 – A small, plastic pocket poncho.
Yep, just as sure as the day is long, you will forget to have one in your fanny pack when it decides to pour down rain. There is noting more miserable than wet hair and socks. Keep one handy for your dog as well. Next to wet socks, a smelly, wet dog runs a close second.
#7 – The Leatherman Tool.
One of the world’s greatest inventions next to the Swiss Army Knife. The ability to pull out splinters with the needle nose pliers, loosen (or tighten) Phillips head screws, cut and shape wire, open a bottle of wine, or just dig something out of the dirt is unsurpassed. But, not really capable of replacing the common pen or small pocketknife.
#8 – A pair of walkie-talkies.
I like the small FRS radios that have a range of a mile or more. They are invaluable when trying to park a camper and as a result have saved many a relationship and marriage, not to mention an awning or fender.
#9 – A magnifying glass.
Great for splinters, bee stings and ingrown toe nail surgery. One can also come in handy when the sticks, flint, steel and butane matches fail. Perfect for finding the lost screw from your eyeglasses and, even in some cases, your eyeglasses themselves. Also great if you can’t find your eyeglasses – period!
#10 – A LOUD whistle
Most all of the items mentioned here can be purchased either in person or on-line from Camping World
HAPPY CAMPING TRAILS TO ALL!
(Now let’s here some of YOUR top 10!)