If You’re Thinking About Camping This Summer…(Free Printable Camping List)

Camping List
Every summer we enjoy at least one or two
camping trips
with a group of our friends…(a few photos from camping last year with a printable camping list)

Kayaking out to a nearby island…

I was so sad I forgot my own pink-camping-tutu…

Let the bug hunting begin…

Finding newts is always a highlight…

Lydia discovered some new hair products–
wet sand and lake water…

First time in her own sleeping bag…

She’s pretending…
“her own sleeping bag” lasted about 30 seconds…
(she ended up sleeping with us)

Cavan catching snakes…
(he told us he prayed God would let him catch a snake)

The snake not-liking-being-caught…
(snake bite on his finger)

target practice…

Jason and Lydi kayaking…

Catching more amazing bugs…
(don’t worry–we catch and release)

The path down to the water…

Our making-boats-competition…

The Annual Talent Show…
(with oh-SO-much-talent)

Mind-reading skills…

This year, we definitely need to make sure Lydi gets more attention…

The difference between boys and girls…
(the flower my friend’s daughter brought her)

The flower our daughter gave my friend…

The “flower” our son found for me…

The laundry pile…
(but–so worth it!)

Camping List Suggestions–(with printable link at the end):
(Let me just say upfront that I am not a minimalist when it comes to camping. 
We don’t bring everything on this list, but we do end up bringing most of it…)
Easy Food Ideas:
(we do bring a cooler and block ice works best for keeping it cool)
cheese (pre-sliced)
beef stick
fruit (pre-cut makes it super easy)
pre-cut veggies
ziplock bags of cherries or peanuts in shells (I love handing these out in a place where it’s okay to drop the shells/pits)
yogurt (freeze it ahead of time and it’ll help keep things cold)
Trader Joes Frozen Carrot Cake
hot dogs
Mountain House Freeze Dried Meals (believe it or not, these are actually really good)
left-over cold pizza
pre-made burritos (can be warmed in foil over the fire or on the stove)
nacho supplies (can be warmed/melted in foil over the fire)
pasta salad (made ahead of time)
cut up fruit salad (made ahead of time)
cream cheese
dried fruit

plastic silverware
cups for hot drinks
water jug (just a heads up–last year someone bumped the spout to the water jug and we filled up the bottom of our van with 2.5 gallons of water that slowly leaked out)
water bottles
hot chocolate
graham crackers
chocolate bars
beef jerky
popcorn (in those containers that come with a handle)

milk (for camping we buy the boxed kind that doesn’t need to be refrigerated)
coffee (we take single serve “tea” bag coffee)

insulated coffee cups
no stick foil (this stuff is amazing–you won’t need Pam or butter if you use this)
Ziploc bags
trash bags
marshmallow/hot dog sticks
tongs (for getting food off fire)
french press (if you like to use real coffee…we usually bring both)
infant related items (this was the first year in a long time that we haven’t brought bottles & baby food).

Other camping suggestions:
camp chairs
walker or portable high chair (especially if you have a little one crawling/not walking yet)
tarp for playing on
tent poles
tent poles (I usually keep this on the list twice because once I forgot the poles and brought the tent and once I forgot the tent and the poles.  Let me just say…it makes camping tricky :)
battery operated air pump
air mattresses
self-inflating mattresses (we use these for the kiddos)
kid sleeping bags
Dad & mom’s sleeping bags
cord for clothes line
backpack for the beach/day trips
kayaks/inflatable rafts
bug spray
antibacterial wipes
medicine kit (epi-pen, Tylenol, thermometer, burn gel, bandaids)
bee sting pen (3 years ago, our son got out of the van when we arrived and within 30 seconds had managed to jump on a bee hive, getting stung in multiple places)
Benadryl (thanks for the reminder Amy :)
pillows (if you use them)
tarp for under tent

Clothing/Personal related items:
(I usually make a list for each of the kids to pack for themselves and have them cross items off when they actually place them in their trash bag–we pack clothes in large, heavy duty yard trash bags–I’m not sure why, but it works for us).


long pants

shirts (short and long sleeve)
underwear (I hope that was on your list too :)
lots of wipes
swim suits
Swimpers (for little ones)
water shoes
tennis shoes
flip flops
bathroom bags (we camp where they do have bathrooms and I usually pack one bag for the boys and one for the girls because we go in groups).
snowsuit (if you have a little one and the night’s get cold, this is THE BEST for sleeping)

In the bathroom bags:
hand soap (most bathrooms don’t have soap)
paper towel roll
hair bands
contact solution
contacts cases
glasses in cases

Random other items:
portable crib
BB gun and targets
sand bucket with shovel
tiny alarm clock
cell phone
extra keys (one year my husband lost his when on a jog and we were so thankful I brought my set along)
extra garbage bags for laundry
firewood (if you have room to bring it, much cheaper than buying it at the camp site)
broom (for sweeping out tent)
shoe mat for in front of tent (will help keep out a lot of mud/dirt)
potty chair (if you are mid-potty-training…you’ll want to bring this along…really helps!)
permanent marker
plastic table cloth
dust pan (for sweeping out the tent)
dog line (if you are taking your dog)
calamine lotion
Benadryl (one year our son got 3 bee stings within 2 minutes of our arrival)

I’m sure I’m forgetting something, but that is part of camping too…

Let me know if you can think of anything we should include next round…

Free printable camping list available–

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  1. I’m wondering how they were able to shoot a bb gun. I live in the San Bernardino mountains, California. A sheriff told me that we had to have 100 yards open space.

    • I’ll ask my husband…we’re not in CA, so our laws may be different…but where we camp we are outside city limits…and they go even farther out to practice with what may have been an airsoft… :) But good question…I’ll ask him.

  2. I am just seeing this now…so sorry.
    We usually go to huge group sites that are pretty far out. Some you can reserve and some you just show up and so you have to have someone willing to drive down and be there early to get a place.
    And we also have multiple kiddos, so the packing is tricky. One of the families we camp with has a trailer, so they usually bring our bikes for us. Even if we were to go to a regular campground with just our own family…I think it’d be worth it to pay the extra amount for a large group site because there is privacy and safey for riding bikes (no cars coming through etc). Only one of the places we go to works with bikes…the other two don’t…none of our campgrounds have showers, but the bathrooms are fine…not great, but fine (for a few days of camping and lots of water playing). :)

  3. Love the list (and the pictures)! Also, I try to remember a cell phone car charger with that cell phone. :)


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