17 Common Beginner Camping Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

17 Common Beginner Camping Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

Beginner camping mistakes are quite a challenge to pinpoint. However, some people may think that camping is easy and do not realize the proper gear or food they need. If you have never gone camping before, you may have some mistakes up your sleeve before you get out there. There are a lot of things you have to think about when you go on a camping trip.

Two People Infront of a Fire Set-up | Image Soure – Pexels

You first have to figure out what time of year you want to go camping and you have to decide what kind of shelter you want to sleep in. You also have to consider what food you will bring with you, whether you want to bring a stove for cooking and if you want to bring a tent. There are a lot of things you have to think about when you go on a camping trip but even if you make a mistake or two, you will still have fun camping!

1. Not Researching The Area where You will Be Camping

Vehicles Parked in a Campsite | Image Source – Pexels

If you want to go camping, you should do your research on the area you plan on going. There could be dangerous wildlife in the area, which includes bears and wild coyotes. Campgrounds can be dangerous if you’re not alert. If you don’t research your campsite ahead of time, you could be putting yourself and others in danger of being attacked by wild animals. You might be thinking “but what about going camping at a national park?” While National Parks are some of the safest camping spots, you still need to do your research. Set up your tent in sunlight. And don’t wander off into the woods by yourself. You wouldn’t want to stumble upon a poisonous snake or plant and not know what it was!

2. Not Make The Plan

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Not making a travel plan way before can be detrimental to your holiday. The first reason is that you can stress yourself out trying to figure out what to do. It is better to line up your transport and accommodation before even thinking about where to go. The next reason is that you will have many hiccups getting your things together. You will have to book your flight, your accommodation, and your transport at the same time and it can be overwhelming. You don’t want to get to an airport only to realize you haven’t booked your accommodation and you have to spend the last few minutes of your holiday trying to figure out where you’re going to sleep. 

No matter how spontaneous you are, traveling is something that should always be planned out. This can be as simple as writing out a rough itinerary for your trip and planning hotel and restaurant reservations. Not making a planned way before can make things more complicated than necessary. It’s best to just schedule it in your calendar and make sure to stay on top of the reservations. 

3. Arriving at Your Campsite Too Late

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There are several things to plan when camping outdoors. The first one is your camping gear. If you’re going to enjoy your stay, you’re going to need gear that’s going to make it easy to start a campfire, cook food, and sleep well. Another thing to consider is your first time camping. It’s crucial to set up camp before it gets dark outside. Otherwise, it’ll be difficult to pitch your tent or set up your equipment. The final thing is to get a proper amount of sleep each night. 

Read more: Will I See Ghosts while Camping Overnight in the Forest?

4. Inappropriate Food Preparation

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When you’re camping with your friends, it’s critical to stay fed and well hydrated. While there are places where you can buy food in the wilderness, it’s more fun to bring your own! While you can bring raw food to cook over the fire, you have to be careful to not leave your food out when the fire dies down. Find out more about the best camping stoves in marker. To start, you’ll want to bring food in waterproof packaging. Depending on the length of your trip and your group’s appetite, you can bring plenty of protein-rich foods like chicken, beef, or fish. You can also bring fresh and dried fruits like apples and bananas, or raw potatoes to bake once you get there. To start, bring water. You’ll need water to cook your food and to drink. While the water you carry can run out, you can always come back to the car for more! Additionally, you can carry some interesting camping food to stay on the safe side. Click here to learn about some of the best cold weather camping food recipes

5. Selecting or Picking The Wrong Tent 

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Making the right tent choice is extremely important, especially when you’re going out into the wilderness with a group of people! There are some things that you need to consider when you’re shopping for the right tent. First, you’re going to want to make sure that the tent is waterproof. Not only will this protect your gear from moisture, but it will also keep you safe in case of a rainstorm! Also, you’ll need to keep in mind that the tent needs to have enough room for everyone at your camping party. There are other details that you’ll want to pay attention to, such as how easy the tent is to set up! But if you keep these things in mind, you can be assured that you’re making the right choice and having a good time in the great outdoors!

6. Over-Packing

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When you’re hiking and camping in the wilderness, every second counts. Every extra item you take with you could mean the difference between a night spent shivering under a blanket with only the light of the moon to illuminate us and a comfortable night’s sleep under the stars. It is important to stay light and mobile. Never take more than you need. This is one of the beginner camping mistakes to keep in mind. Make sure to only take the necessary clothing and equipment and leave the rest at home. With less stuff weighing you down, you’ll find yourself having fun and enjoying nature all the more!

Read and learn how you can fold clothes for traveling.

7. Not Testing Old Gear or Packing Untested New Gear

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Before you set out on a long trip, it is important to test your gear. You can test it when you’re at home and in your normal environment, taking notes on how you feel, and seeing if it works the way you want it to. For example, if you have a walkie talkie you can try it out with your kids or if you have a new tent, you can go find a field and lay it out and set it up. Take a nap in it. Go on a small hike in the woods where you can put the tent up and sleep in it for the night. This is the best way to test it out! Make sure you know what you’re doing before you leave or it could lead to a dangerous situation or miserable trip.

8. Being Tardy

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When it comes to camping, one of the most important aspects is being prepared. This is one of the major beginner camping mistakes. Unfortunately, some people aren’t prepared for a delay in their schedule. If your road trip takes you through a rainy area and your schedule is delayed, you’ll have to find places to stay that are indoors and have functional heating. Last-minute camping trips are not recommended, but sometimes they are unavoidable. If this happens to you, you need to think quickly and take advantage of any nearby indoor places that have heat and shelter. One safe bet is to look for hotels and motels. These are often very affordable and can get you out of the rain.

9. Not Storing Food Properly

Oranges in a Disposable Bag | Image Source – Pexels

You should be able to safely store your camping food for a long time. Most camping food is not easy to store, so you’ll need to keep it in the best place possible. You should store your camping food in a cool and dry area with no sunlight. It’s also important you make sure you store the food properly when you get home. This means storing the food in an area where it’s safe from pests and rodents. You should never eat food that has been damaged or exposed to rats or mice.

10. Do Not Bring Cash

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As a newbie trying to avoid beginner camping mistakes, this tip is really important. The reason you want to avoid holding cash during a camping trip is that it’s so inconvenient. When you’re camping, especially if you’re going in the wilderness, you won’t have much ability to spend money. The ATMs won’t work, you won’t be able to visit a store, and you’ll be too far away for online purchases. This means that if you bring cash, you’ll have to have it on your person at all times, which is not only inconvenient, but it’s also unsafe. If you’re traveling with a group, carrying a lot of cash can be a threat to your physical safety as multiple people will have that much more opportunity to steal it. It’s a lot better to simply use your credit card or cash out your money so that you don’t have to worry about it!

11. Not Carrying Enough Water

Bottle of Water with Fruits | Image Source – Pexels

One of the most important camping tips is to make sure that you bring plenty of water with you. Dehydration is a prevalent issue for campers and can be very dangerous. You must drink enough water to keep yourself hydrated. If you are an active camper, you should drink even more as you’re losing more water through perspiration and respiration. However, you will also need to be careful to bring water that is safe to drink. There are several ways to do this. The best way is to boil the water. This will rid it of any invisible, lurking organisms. Another method is to bring a water filter with you. While this may take some extra space and equipment, it will keep your water completely safe.

12. Failing to Tell Others Where You are Going

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There are a ton of great places to go camping in the world, but there are some places that can be dangerous! It’s important to keep relatives and friends informed of your destination. Nature can be unpredictable, and if you don’t alert others to your destination, that’s a big risk. You might be kidnapped by a crazed individual or an animal might attack you. To prevent these situations from happening, you should tell loved ones your destination!

13. Ignoring Worst-Case Scenarios

Brown Snake | Image Source – Pexels

It’s tempting to go camping and to imagine everything flowing smoothly. Unfortunately, the truth is quite the opposite. Several things can go wrong while you’re camping, and if you haven’t prepared for them, you could end up being in quite a bit of trouble. 

In any activity, there is always a chance that something might go wrong even if you are not worried about beginner camping mistakes. But many beginners are unsure of how to prepare for their camping trip. There are a lot of things that you should prepare for on a camping trip. This includes natural disasters, snakes and predators, and mishaps related to the camping itself. One of the very basic things that you need to know is how to keep yourself safe from natural disasters or attacks from enemies or wild animals. During camping, it is important to remember that you are in an environment surrounded by nature, so you should always be aware of anything that can potentially cause harm to you.

14. Relying on a Campfire for Food and Warmth

Poorly Lit Campfire | Image Source – Pexels

Whether you’re camping or backpacking, you should always take precautions to avoid beginner camping mistakes. It’s important to not always rely on a campfire to provide you with food and warmth during your trip. That’s where the Esbit pocket stove comes in handy. The Esbit pocket stove is ultra-portable and made out of sturdy anodized aluminum. The stove is lightweight and weighs about an ounce. Before you start your trip, you should boil water in it to burn off any toxins that were leftover at the factory. The next day you can make a quick cup of coffee and your stove will be ready to go.

15. Forgetting Insect Repellent or Sunscreen

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If you’re planning on going camping or hiking, bug repellent will be essential to pack. Bugs and insects can be a real pain – they can make you itchy and uncomfortable, distract you from your food, and even carry germs and diseases that can make you sick. The brand you choose will depend on how big the bugs in your area are. If you’re going to a swamp or are near a lake or river, you’ll want something heavier duty like a natural spray with DEET. If you’re planning on taking a plane, plane, or train, you’ll mostly be dealing with larger insects, so a natural spray or repellent that can be washed out of the clothes is best.

16. Not Packing Adequate Clothing

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Carrying adequate clothing is advised. However, don’t be caught off guard with wearing clothing that is too heavy by choosing jackets that are lightweight and ideal for hiking and camping. This is because:

  • You will be able to easily move around without being worn out by the weight of the clothing.
  • When it gets wet it won’t get heavier until its waterproof coating cracks, allowing it to become heavier than before.

Hence, investing in a quality collection of camping clothes would take you a long way.

17. Not Following The Rules of Camping

No Alcohol Sign Board | Image Source – Pexels

If you’re a beginner at camping and want to avoid beginner camping mistakes, there is a lot to learn. But before you can even start learning, you need to make sure you’re following some of the basic rules and regulations. This includes not going over your allotted time limit in the campsite, not digging things up from the ground, and not leaving food out where animals can get to it. It can be hard when you don’t know what you’re doing but do your best to follow the rules and you should have a great time!

FAQs Related to Beginner Camping Mistakes

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What are Some Important Beginner Camping Rules?

Some of the most important camping rules for beginners include, 

  • Never go camping without a first aid kit. 
  • Make sure to get enough sleep and eat a hearty breakfast. 
  • Make sure to take a shower and wash your clothes to remove the smell of the outdoors before going in public. 
  • Always camp with a partner so you can look out for one another. 
  • Follow the Leave No Trace principles and pack out everything you bring in so you’re helping to preserve our natural environment. 

How Do You Properly Camp?

To camp properly, you need to get yourself a tent and some camping gear. You want to get your tent so you won’t be bothered by other people. Being aware of how to fix tent poles would be an added advantage. If you don’t know how to camp as a beginner, read here on the things to pack as a newbie.

Which 4 Things are Most Important to Carry when Camping?

4 things are essential for every camping trip- a tent to keep you dry and warm, a sleeping bag to keep you warm at night, a sleeping pad to keep you comfortable, and a first aid kit to patch up cuts and wounds. If you’re camping in an area with wildlife, you may also want a weapon for defense or a field guide to help you identify plants and animals.

Where is The Best Place to Set Up a Tent?

If you’re going camping, always set up your tent on flat grounds. Setting up a tent on a hill or a slope can cause the stakes to rip out of the ground, leaving your tent flapping in the wind and putting your belongings at risk of damage. Always set up your tent on flat, dry, hard soil to ensure that you won’t have a problem with it blowing away.

How to Pack The Backpack when Going on a Camping Trip?

Packing your backpack for a camping trip may seem easy. However, packing it in an organized style as the rucksack style can save you a lot of time and space. 


There are several ways to go about your camping trip by learning beginner camping mistakes. However, it’s important to remember to be safe and aware of your surroundings. Make sure you have enough water and food to last, so you don’t get stranded in the wilderness! The most important thing to remember is that you can’t control mother nature. Be ready with a backup plan in case the weather turns bad. These tips will help you feel more at ease when out in the wilderness. And even if you make mistakes, you’ll learn and grow from them and soon you’ll be an expert camper!

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Lauren De Almeida

Lauren De Almeida

I am a passionate author. I like traveling and hence contribute to this travel blog with interest. Moreover, I enjoy writing articles on travel, cuisine, lifestyle, and culture. For me, this is an interesting art to explore new places, meet new people and learn about their lifestyles. All my publishing on this site contributes to encouraging everyone out there to get out and explore the world around you. Through this site, I intend on delivering the latest travel news, updates, and other interesting information to readers. Enjoy!

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