Choosing a Camping Tent

February 9, 2009

With the difficult economic times we’re facing, many couples are turning back to camping as a low cost alternative to traditional hotel vacations. Once you get past the initial outlay for camping equipment the savings come from every direction. First, the cost of a campsite is almost always less than half the cost of a hotel room in a comparable location. Second, instead of spending big bucks on three restaurant meals per day, you can prepare meals at your campsite and every meal becomes a family picnic.Let’s face it, a picnic basket full of groceries will cost much less than dinner at even a moderately priced restaurant. Ok, your sold on the idea? Let’s talk about choosing the right camping tent for your needs.

One of the main things you’re going to need to consider what time of year you plan on camping. When I was a kid, a tent was a tent and if it rained, you got wet and if it was cold out, you froze. Fortunately times have changed and tents are much better equipped to handle the elements than they were 40 years ago. Today’s camping tents are generally classified by the number of seasons they’re intended to be used in.

A “three season” tent is designed for spring, summer and fall in most regions. If you don’t plan on doing any winter camping, this is the choice for you. Three season tents come in a variety of sizes, shapes and prices. Models are available to sleep as few as two people and as many as 10. When shopping for a three season tent, make sure you choose one with windows that are protected by an awning known as a rainfly. This will allow you to keep the windows open during light and moderate rain without getting wet while you wait out the storm. In other words, choose a tent that will let the air in and keep the moisture out. One thing you can count on, you will catch a rainy day on a camping trip sometime.

If you’re planning on camping in any kind of harsh winter conditions, you’ll need to choose a “four season” camping tent. They often have better floors that are not only waterproof but are better insulated against the cold. They are also made of heavier grade materials and are better equipped to handle the difficult elements that winter can bring. I actually question the use of “four season” for these tents. They are so well insulated that camping in warm summer conditions can be quite uncomfortable in a four season tent. Four season tents are also considerably more expensive than three season tents so unless you’re planning on camping in harsh winter conditions, a three season tent is probably best for you.

Once you’ve decided on the type of tent is best for you, I’d suggest you visit Camping Gear Stop. We offer an excellent selection of three and four season camping tents in a variety of sizes and price ranges.


Joys of Family Camping Part II

February 4, 2009

Some of my favorite memories of the family camping trips involved sitting around the campfire at night. In fact, as soon as we’d pull into the campground I’d head into the woods looking for firewood. I’d always bring back so much wood that there would be no chance of using it but the “hunt” was tons of fun for me. Then it would be my job to start the fire. I can remember bragging that I could start a fire with one match and no paper or fuel. Today you’ll probably want to bring your firewood with you but sitting around the fire is still a lot of fun.

The campfire is one of those things that bring people together. Start a fire and there’s a good chance that the family in the camping tent next to you will stop by with a bag of marshmallows to toast. My sister used to toast hers slowly and get them brown on the outside and warm and gooey on the inside. I used to stick mine right in the fire and let them burn to a crisp. We met a family on a camping trip in 1970 and our families are still the best of friends today.

Once the marshmallows get toasting and mom brings out the cups of hot chocolate, somebody may start telling stories. I used to like the ones that started out sounding like they were going to be scary but then the punch lines made them funny. We also used to sing silly songs and tell jokes that really weren’t very funny. I think what really made the campfire great is that the whole family was together and the kids had mom and dad all to ourselves.

The more I think about these days, the more I recommend that you take your family camping. I’d suggest you check out Camping Gear Stop for your camping tent and other camping gear. You also may want to visit Picnic Baskets and More to check out their selection of wicker picnic baskets and other picnic accessories.

Joys Of Family Camping

January 26, 2009

Welcome to the Joys of Family Camping. In this series I’ll draw on my own camping experiences to help you understand why I think that camping is the best family building experience there is. My family discovered camping when I was 13 years old and in the 39 years that followed, I’ve had some great family experiences while camping. In the process, I’ll turn you on to some great places to camp and help you make a list of the basic equipment you’ll need.

One of my favorite things about camping is the chance to experience wildlife in a totally new way. The earliest example of this I can remember was on our very first camping trip. It was June of 1969 and my dad decided that we would try camping for our summer vacation. Dad decided we were going to visit Assateague Island National Seashore and see the wild ponies. Imagine how cool it was for my brother, sister and I (aged 4, 10 and 13 respectively) to see these ponies running around wild. Sure, we could have stayed at a hotel and driven to see the ponies, but it simply wouldn’t have been the same as waking up, getting out of our camping tent, cooking a picnic breakfast and then walking to where we could see the ponies. It felt to me like we were part of the ponies’ environment rather than intruders into their environment.

Among the amazing wildlife I’ve encountered while camping are wild moose in Maine, a monarch butterfly migration in Long Island (yes you really can go camping in Long Island), dozens of bald eagles and hawks in Central Pennsylvania , a migration of tiny frogs in South Carolina and hundreds of deer in one evening on the Skyline Drive in Virginia. All of these trips have etched memories for a lifetime into my mind. I only wish the quality of cameras was better when I was a child. That reminds me, don’t forget to take your camera on your next camping trip and when you go, please, please take nothing but pictures and leave nothing but footprints.

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Todays kids and camping

January 18, 2009

Growing up i did alot of camping with my family and friends as a child.I remember most of the trips and they bring back great memories growing up.

I remember my brother and i could not wait until dad got home from work on friday night before we left on a weekend camping trip.We would always run to the window to see if dad was home yet.This would drive our mother crazy while waiting.I remember her say you have to wait boy’s he will be home when he gets here.

We could not wait to get to the camping site so we could run off on a great adventure.We had our fishing poles and tackle boxes ready to go a week before the camping trip.Now i am a father and have four boy of my own.The two oldest boys are not interested in camping at all the other two are to young to know.The two oldest boys frown on the idea they say why do we have to go that is so boring can we stay with our friends while you guys go.

When we get to the campsite they don’t want to help setup camp or do anything all they want to do is talk on the cell phone or play video games.What is with todays kids why don’t they want to spend time in nature camping and fishing.This was a very important part of a kids life when i was growing up.They act like they don’t have time for doing these kind of activities anymore.

I have noticed this with other kids aswell could it be because all of todays high tech toys like cell phones or video games i think that may be part of the problem but not all.How can we get kids interested in outdoor adventure activities again.

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10 Camping Tips For Beginners

January 7, 2009

If you are new to camping these tips for beginners can be a tremendous help.Camping gets easier and more enjoyable the more you do it.These camping tips will help you get from a beginner to a skilled camper.

Camping tip one:

Figure out where you’ll be going to camp and who will be camping with you.Figure out everyones needs like do we need electricity showers toilets running water or can we survive without these things.Then you can find a campsite to fit your needs.

Camping tip two:

If you are going to be camping in a tent put it together at home.This will help you when you arrive at the campsite.Some tents are a bit tricky to put together.The more practice at putting it together the better and faster you will become at this task.

Camping tip three:

Plan for your camping trip before you head out to the campsite.Make a check list of everything you’ll need and want to use during your camping trip.This is important because how would you feel after having to blow up all the air mattresses by mouth because someone forgot to pack the air pump.

Camping tip four:

Pack the correct clothing for the season you’ll be camping.Check the weather offton before you go you’ll want to know what the weather conditions will be on your camping trip.A storm front may blow in on your camping trip and you’ll want to be prepared with your rain gear.I always take my rain gear because sometimes they do get the weather wrong.

Camping tip five:

Think about what kind of food you’ll be taking with you and how you will preserve it.You can get food poisoning on a camping trip if you do not preserve your food right.We like to use a cooler packed with ice for the drinks and a different ice packed cooler for our meats and food items.Remember to leave the drain plug open in the cooler that contains your meat and food items.If you left the plug closed the ice would melt leaving all your food soaked with water.

Camping tip six:

Figure out how you’ll be cooking charcoal propane or firewood will i need matches and lighter fluid etc.Can firewood be gathered at the campsite or do i need to bring it.

Camping tip seven:

Take a first aid kit or a survival kit with you because accidents do happen and they will.You’ll need to be prepared for one even if one doesn’t happen don’t take a chance.

Camping tip eight:

Let others that are not camping with you know where you’ll be.Never go off in the woods or on a hike without letting someone know.It doesn’t take much to get lost if it’s a place you never been before.

Camping tip nine:

Have fun and leave all your worries and stress behind.Enjoy your time in nature it is a wonderful beautiful place.

Camping tip ten:

Leave the campsite clean for the next campers and remember to only leave  footprints.

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“Choosing the best tent”

December 22, 2008

Camping is a great way to get away from all the stress and headaches that comes with everyday life.It’s also a great way to spend sometime in the outdoors with the people you love.Before you go make sure you choose the correct tent you’ll need.

Here are a few tips for picking a tent that gives you all the modern advantages without the traditional headache.The first thing you should do in order to pick the correct tent is decide on the size of tent you’ll need.

Tents are made for a specific number of campers.An example would be something like a single camper would only need a single tent but a family will need something much larger with alot of room you get the picture i’m sure.

Most tents on the market will have a capacity label describing how many campers the tent will hold.After you choose the correct size you will need to then think about the weather conditions you’ll be camping in.

Now it’s time to decide which tent you’ll choose.Their is a three season tent and a four season tent.

The three season tents are intended for spring summer and fall.They perform well in mild wind and rain but they are not designed or suited to handle large amounts of snow or high winds.A three season tent may not fall if a couple of inches of snow fell but i wouldn’t want to get caught in a winter storm with one.

If you plan on camping in the winter then you should choose a four season tent.They are very sturdy and usually integrate one or two additional poles into the tents design to fortify the walls and help them stand up against high winds or heavy snow loads.

Just remember whatever tent  you choose have fun and be safe.

Winter Camping

December 12, 2008

Hello and welcome to my first post.Today i want to blog about winter camping.I have heard that it is becoming more popular today than a few years ago.

I have been a camper for about 20 years now and i have never once been camping in the winter months.Most people in America go threw some pretty bad winters.

I’m located in a small southern town in Missouri called Potosi it’s part of the ozarks.During the winter months i don’t see any people camping anywhere.

In the spring time campers are booming around here by the thousands.When the winter months come around everyone vanishes until the warm seasons arrive.

The last time of the year i see campers out is during the late fall when whitetail deer hunting season rolls around.That is the last time i see tent campers out until spring.However i do still see rv’s out and about.

Someday i may just get the nerve and try winter camping out for myself.I guess i would build a big campfire and stack plenty of wood for the long and cold nights.

What about the snow but i must say it would be a beautiful picture sitting next to a warm campfire while it was snowing.It could also be a problem if to much snow fell.I think i’d bring a snow shovel just in case i had to dig out.

Let me know all of your winter camping stories.I would love to hear how you survived.I would also like to know what kinds of camping gear was used during these winter camping adventures.

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Thanks for stopping bye have a wonderful winter camping season.

Ed Frueh