The ride home after a camping trip can be long, particularly when you have a hot shower and cozy bed waiting there for you. Before relaxing, there are some final chores that need to be done.
Unpacking your gear
- Unload your gear
First things first. Unload your car, truck, or camper and separate everything used on the camping trip.
- Empty the cooler
Remove all food from your cooler and place it in the refrigerator, then rinse the cooler and allow to dry.
- Store food items
Return all remaining foods to the pantry, cupboard, or refrigerator.
- Wash the dishes
Even if you did it at the campground before leaving, it's still a good sanitary practice to wash them again.
- Dispose of trash
Gather up and dispose of any remaining trash. This is also a good time to whisk out the car or truck of any debris.
- Do the laundry
Before washing the clothes, go outside and shake out all your camping clothes and bedding, especially the kids' clothing.
- Stow away the gear
Shake out all your gear too. If any gear is wet, lay it out or set it up to dry before packing it for storage. Mildew is much easier to prevent than it is to remove.
If you took any pictures, send them off to be developed. Then sit around and talk about your camping memories.
Store Your Gear
Here are some final tips before you put your gear away.
- Get out your checklist
Take inventory of your gear as your store it, and note any broken gear that needs repair, missing items that need to be replenished, or items that you want to add to the list.
- High and dry
Storing gear high helps keep it away from rodents and insects. Keeping it dry helps avoid mildew.
- Avoid freezing
Any moisture in materials can cause damage from expansion when freezing. Some materials, even when dry, may crack in very cold temperatures. Avoid storing your gear where temperature may drop below freezing.
- Food smells
Rodents are attracted to the smell of food and can quickly ruin your gear chewing through it to look for food that is no longer there. To avoid these pests, be sure to air out or wash all gear that smells of food.
- Remove batteries
To avoid any possibilities of corrosion, remove the batteries from any gadgets and store them separately.
Plans for your next camping destination begin with the check list. Add any new items that may further your enjoyment of the great outdoors, and remove any that you found you didn't need. If you've taken a liking to camping, keep notes of the campgrounds you've visited, the recipes you tried (and liked), the friends you made at the campground, and any useful tips worth remembering. That's it. I hope you found these lessons helpful.
This is the last lesson. You should now have a good idea of what you need to know to get outdoors and go camping.