Before thinking about going on a remote camping trip, you should have a plan of action in place long before your arrival. Remote camping is only manageable when you plan ahead. Some people may think remote camping should be a spontaneous and adventurous activity, but you don’t want spontaneity without some focus. Like anything, if you have direction as to where you are headed and what you should take with you, your trip should be more manageable.
Plan of Action
Depending on whether you are going to camp on your own, with others, or with pets, you need to plan as to where you will camp, how you will get there, what essentials you will need to take, and how long your camping adventure will last. Coming up with your plan is the most important part of your trip!
Hiking to a remote campsite will be different from driving or having a recreational vehicle with you, so the matter of transportation has to be taken into consideration for not only getting back and forth from a campsite, but transporting and storing camping essentials as well. Plus, you need to keep your vehicle in tip-top shape, have access to fuel, distilled water, a battery charger, tire inflator, a multi-tool kit, and other items before you plan a remote camping trip. You should also have your vehicle documents and insurance papers along in case of any altercations on the road. No one wants to contact a car accident attorney on the way to and from a remote camping spot.
Wherever you decide to camp, check with the Forest Service for camping locations as well as national parks, state parks, and other areas for camping accommodations. Inquire as to what campsites offer, such as camping time limits, safety concerns, passable roads, water availability, fire restrictions, restroom/shower facilities, and the nearest towns and medical services. Remember, many remote spots are “first come, first served.” Write, email, or call about reserving campsites before taking off into the wilderness.
Camping essentials should include a survival or “bug-out” bag, a first aid kit that includes sunscreen, chap stick, insect repellents, and any personal medications. Hand wipes, sanitizer, toilet tissue, towels, soap, dry shampoo, water purification tablets or filters, as well as garbage bags for dirty laundry and trash are other important essentials.
Sufficient bottled water as well as a food box and cooler are other items to include. Stock the food box with non-perishable food items, such as canned goods, coffee, tea, powdered drinks, crackers, bread, dried fruit, dehydrated or packaged dinners, canned meats, jerky, peanut butter, pudding and fruit cups, trail mixes, granola bars and other snacks. Canned drinks, water bottles and any perishable foods should be kept in the cooler, or a recreational vehicle refrigerator.
Other personal essentials should include comfortable hiking shoes/boots, synthetic or wool socks, breathable loose and protective clothing (moisture wicking clothing), as well as sun hats, raingear, and swimsuits (if swimming areas are available).
Depending on whether a recreational vehicle of some kind is used for remote camping, there are equipment pieces that are usually necessary if tent camping is the camping mode. Equipment should include a seasonal tent, sleeping bags, pillows, folding chairs, air mattresses or cots, blankets, lanterns, flashlights, headlamps, a fold-able shovel, an axe, propane cylinders, propane stove, over the fire grill grate, fire-starter, waterproof matches, stainless steel coffee pot, pans, plates, cups and utensils, which are all equipment standards. A camera, binoculars, maps, a handheld GPS, extra batteries and a cell phone and phone charger all make remote camping safer, easier, and more enjoyable as well.
Wild animals, disgruntled or hostile camper neighbors (interlopers), rough terrain, poisonous or dangerous insects and plants, dangerous weather, fires, and other situations can all present safety concerns, which suggest it is good to know about animal and plant life in a remote camping area, plus have others campers with you to help in emergencies and make calls to local emergency and law officials if necessary.
The advice listed should help to make remote camping far more manageable. With the right plan, equipment, supplies, common sense, and a little cautionary know how, remote camping can be both manageable and fun.