In this entry for the series on the common mistakes new campers make and how you can avoid them we will explore the importance of ensuring you have Comfortable Shelter and Suitable Toilet Arrangements.
Once you have found the right place and are about to get things all in place for a wonderful camping adventure with family or friends, you need to make considerations to ensure that you don’t encounter the following mistakes.
Mistake #4: No shelter you can comfortably stand up in
Small, low-profile pop-up caravans and tents can at times lack in the required height for anyone much taller than five feet to stand up straight.
This is another one of the common mistakes new campers make. More and more new campers tend to get caught with no other form of shelter. A two or three man tent is great for sleeping in, but that’s all they are really good for.
You can’t stand up comfortably if you are tall, and in inclement weather, you don’t have many more options.
Who really wants to spend days stooping over in a tiny space when foul weather hits? It’s not much more fun than being cooped up like a dog in a kennel during a storm.
The fact is that no matter where you go, one day it’s going to rain. And from time to time it will absolutely bucket down, so don’t get caught out camping like sardines packed into a tiny tin can.
Solution: In addition to your sleeping accommodation, take along a large tarpaulin or awning to string up at or above head height.
A personal favourite for me is to hang a tarpaulin between trees or from a tree to a vehicle. No only is this great for protection from the rain, it’s also a great way to cut down on the direct heat from the sun.
When picking a tent or a camper van, whatever your desired mode of camping, make sure that you go for affordable quality and a sturdy structure.
Check that you will have enough room for everyone in your group, and allow a little space for the required camp furniture.
Mistake #5: Impractical or non-existent toiletry arrangements
If there’s one thing that’s inescapable in the big city or the bush, it’s the need for a toilet.
On basic campsites for a night or two, the camp shovel and a long walk is often your only call, so make sure you prepare for it suitably. Key tip, always use the shovel.
That’s if you don’t make one of the rookie common mistakes new campers make and forget to take the shovel.
There’s nothing much worse than finding toiletry waste around a campsite. The hygiene implications are obvious, and I know you don’t need me to go into those right now.
However, this is unfortunately so common that I can only draw the conclusion that few campers give toilet arrangements the required forethought.
Solution: Make sure you add a shovel to your camping gear, it doesn’t have to be a massive shovel, just big enough to do the job. Oh, and take it along on every trip; if you forget it you may well be in the sh!t before you know it.
For camps of four days or more, a bucket-style chemical toilet would be more convenient, but you still, eventually, need to dispose of it in a suitable way. In some areas it is required of campers to take all forms of waste back out with them.
Often this is not simply a case of best practice and courtesy; it is at times the only legal option, so make sure you prepare accordingly.
Stay tuned for the next post in Common Mistakes New Campers Make where we will explore importance of ensuring you have Adequate Campfire Preparations and Suitable Food Storage.