Camping in the wild is a wonderful experience and a unique opportunity to get away from routine life and connect with nature. However, the way you execute your first few camping trips can make or break your new-found interest in the outdoors.

Here are five planning tips that will help you get the most out of your first camping experience.

Make a checklist

Planning and organization is an important part of camping, so don’t overlook it, as most new campers tend to do. You don’t want to reach the camping ground and find out you forgot gear that you simply can’t do without.

Your checklist may vary depending on the location and length of your trip. Regardless, a checklist will come handy in preparing for the trip and ensuring you don’t leave the essential stuff behind.

Make a meal plan

It’s true that the whole idea of living out in the wild is to have as little structure or predictability as possible. But when it comes to food, it’s better to go prepared if you don’t want to resort to eating leaves and shoots.

Planning your meals is important as it will help you pack just the right quantity and type of items you’ll need. If camping with children, remember to pack extra food and avoid carrying too many junk snacks.

Let someone know

Whether you’re camping alone or with a companion, always tell a friend or family member where you’ll be and for how long, so that they’ll know when to call for help. This is even more important if you’re out camping with young children. Note that it’s important to prioritize safety regardless of your experience or expertise as an outdoor adventure-seeker.

Carrying a two-way radio may be a good idea if you’re going in a group. Check out some of the best two-way radios for the mountains at

Get your gear ready

First-time campers are often not well versed in using all the camping equipment they tend to carry on their trip. Your camping site is certainly not the right place to learn how to set up your tent or how to use a lantern or water purifier.

Buy quality equipment from a trusted seller such as, practice setting up your equipment to ensure they’re in order, and replace old batteries before leaving.

Don’t skimp on clothing

One of the most important things to do when planning a camping trip is to check the weather forecast and pack clothing and bedding accordingly. Pack adequate clothing as nights can be extra cold when you’re out in the open. See if you’ll need a rain jacket or a swimsuit or both. Pack smart.

In addition, avoid foul weather so that you can make the most of your experience, as camping is all about enjoying nature and being outdoors. You don’t want to put in so much effort into planning a trip only to be stuck inside your tent waiting for the weather to clear.