These are a few of our favorite, easy-to-forget supplies that will supercharge your camping adventure.
1. Nalgene Bottle1 of 6
OK, you've probably heard of a Nalgene before (or at least seen one), but did you know that it serves more than one purpose? Use it as a water bottle during the day and watch it transform into a mini space heater for a chilly night.
Before heading to bed, boil enough water to fill the Nalgene, seal the lid tightly and chuck it into the bottom of your sleeping bag. That plastic bottle will radiate warmth for hours, keeping you toasty until you decide to roll out of bed the next morning.
Product Pictured: Nalgene 32 Oz. Wide Mouth
2. Long-Handled Spork2 of 6
That pasta might be tasty, but it's not worth wearing spaghetti all over your shirtsleeves for the remainder of the trip.
If you're backpacking, you're probably eating a few dehydrated meals that come prepared in a bag. A long-handled spork will give you access to the food in the bottom of the bag without forcing you to stick your entire wrist inside.
Product Pictured: TOAKS Titanium Long Handle Spork with Polished Bowl
Do-It-All Foam Cell Pad3 of 6
You know those classic closed-cell foam pads that are yellow on one side and silver on the other? They offer more than a comfy place to sleep.
Even if you don't want to sleep on the pad, it's not a bad idea to bring one or at least a small portion of one. This jack-of-all-trades can act as a comfy and warm place to sit should you find yourself stranded in the dirt. Or, if it is really windy outside, use this pad as a wall to block the breeze from your camp stove while you cook dinner. Maybe Fido is tired and wants to lie down? Pull up the pad, and you have a cozy bed for your pup. Even better, this useful item can help you out in case of emergency; flip it over and reflect the sunlight off the silver side to signal for help.
Product Pictured: Therm-a-Rest Z Lite Sol Sleeping Pad
4. Glow-in-the-Dark Tape4 of 6
Most tents have reflective strips, but truthfully, they can be tough to see. If you have a large tent, there is a good chance you may find yourself tripping over those poles at night after wandering back from a midnight bathroom break.
Enter: Glow-in-the-dark tape. Just like regular duct tape, you can nab this stuff online and wrap a few strips around various tent poles. Not only is it a quick and easy solution, but you won't have any problems spotting your tent after hours.
Product Pictured: Duck Brand Glow Duct Tape
5. Solar Shower5 of 6
This handy device probably won't be joining you on any backpacking trips, but it sure can feel luxurious while car camping. Solar showers store water in a bladder that is gradually warmed by the sun's rays. Once the water is a comfy temp (or you are desperately in need of a scrubbing!), set up a private area with a tarp and use your solar shower to rinse off the dirt and grime.
Note: If you insist on using soap, please be kind to the environment and use an eco-friendly, biodegradable version. Keep all suds at least 200 feet away from alpine lakes and streams, and be sure to dig a 6 to 8-inch deep hole to dispose of the soapy water. Just because it's biodegradable, doesn't mean it's good for the environment.
Product Pictured: Coleman 5-Gallon Solar Shower