It’s a cool winter morning, and I have a lot to do today. We are going camping soon. Because we have a pull behind travel trailer, some would call my version of camping Glamping, but we fish and grill, have a campfire, bike and hike.
Glamping is basically camping with more of the creature comforts.
When we first decided to buy a camper, I did a lot of research into what we would need to set up camp as middle aged campers in a travel trailer, but the lists were long and involved.
We decided to start by staying close to home a few times to figure it out.
Glamping-camping, the basics, books, and fireside chats.
My ultimate camping list:
If you think about it, Glamping makes more sense than camping in hot humid Mississippi, so the number one thing on my list is our travel trailer, an appropriate shelter is key.
Glampers need an escape and protection from the elements. Air conditioning in particular makes the spring and summer’s hot wet heat bearable especially at night.
If you want your significant other to go with you, make it more comfortable. In winter, it is a safe, warm place to read and come in from the cold.
All year round, rain or shine, we set up our travel trailer somewhere near a sparkling lake with the view and breezes in mind. It has views from every spot in the camper, a perfect spot to write. If I am comfy, I can write anywhere.
Secondly, pack the right gear.
You will need the right clothing for the climate, and rain gear. In Mississippi, camping in any season has its charms, even winter, because we rarely have temps in the teens, but cold and wet are not fun anywhere.
Being in the south , what you really need are comfy clothes that breathe. Usually a water repellent jacket, pullover, good shoes, and long sleeves works with jeans in winter, shorts and T’s or tanks in summer.
Wear athletic shoes, hikers, or skechers type shoes. No sandals if you want to be active. Tree roots and sandals cause accidents. When it is frigid, we just add layers.
Don’t over pack food because you have to carry it, and pack by meal so you don’t forget things. Camping on a regular basis will show you what you will need in your particular family.
When you are packing your cooler and dry goods, pack by meal and think about what you need for making each particular meal. The different spices, buns, sauces, special ingredients, and paper towels will be missed if you forget.
Bring a simple snack or a meal already made, just in case you are so worn out you don’t feel like setting up your chef kitchen just yet and cooking something.
After we set up our camper, we usually need a breather, something cold to drink, and a snack. Then, we have hours to read or just do nothing before we make a meal or explore.
I call it this break my thinking time, where I jot notes while I have a glass of wine, and try to get all the jumble out of my head and ordered on paper. It is a way to leave it behind.
Having said that, I have to add wine and beverages to the cooler list. We bought an ice maker too like this one. I did not know how invaluable an icemaker would be.
It keeps ice going when we have a crowd and makes ice fast when we set up. Makes ice in 8 minutes. RV fridges take time to get cold, so I bring ice packs in my cooler to put in there.
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We keep towels, washcloths, sheets, kitchen linens, sheets etc. in a designated linen carrier to take back and forth for camping.
Its always ready to go, because I wash everything when we get back and put them back in the bag.
We keep kitchen items like potsnpans, utensils, and non perishables in the travel trailer full time, as well as chairs, tables, the Char-Broil Portable 240 Liquid Propane Gas Grill“, and table covers.
I realized after camping the first time that I needed vinyl flannel backed table cloths for the picnic tables we find at camp grounds and our outdoor food prep table. ( Blue Tavern Check Vinyl Flannel Back Tablecloth – 52″ x 70″ Oblong)You can wipe them off and store them in the camper, but don’t store them wet.
We bring bikes and other outdoor activities when we go camping.
We usually take long walks stopping to take photos along the way. When it is sunny, we ride our bikes like kids, waving to other campers as we explore.
I bought a beach cruiser bike like this one(sixthreezero Around The Block Women’s Single Speed Cruiser Bicycle, Mint Green w/ Black Seat/Grips, 26″ Wheels/17″ Frame ) that has wide tires to ride when camping in a camp ground. Its like those you can rent on vacation, and looks like a 50’s or 60’s version with its baby blue paint and wide handle bars. Outdoor games like horse shoes or ring toss occupy the kids, and of course fishing.
My husband chose this fishing gear. It is a fishing rod and reel that breaks down small and sets up easy.
Daiwa 942062 Minispin System Travel Kit
Keep indoor activities in the camper for when it rains.
I take books for reading when it rains or when Chris is fishing. We have cards, board games, and a few of favorite DVD’s stored in the camper too. I keep a mat by the door for muddy feet.
Sometimes it rains a lot and we read surrounded by incredible views and only the sound of the rain.
My Indispendable Items
If you asked me what things are indispensable for camping, the most important besides somewhere to sit and something to drink is a water filter pitcher.
Don’t laugh. (ZeroWater 10 Cup Pitcher y ZeroWater pitcher makes better coffee, and drinkable water is a must. Campground water can be scary. Any tap water can be scary for that matter, especially in a rural area and I prefer not to add more plastic water bottles to the world. Our water connection to the camp ground has a RV water filter also, but I drink water and I want it to taste good.
The second thing I could not do without is the dream topper we bought to go on the bed and stay there, so my travel trailer bed doesn’t feel like sleeping on a rock.
(DreamFoam Bedding 2″ Gel Swirl Memory Foam Topper, Made in USA, Short Queen ) If you get something like this one, make sure you measure first. Our travel trailer has a short queen mattress instead of a regular queen. After the first trip, I got online and ordered a topper for each bed in the camper, even the fold outs. The dream topper made it comfortable for me. If you sleep well, camping is more fun.
By the fire and cooking stuff
As for my husband, after the initial equipping of the camper with the basic RV starters, he beefed up his fishing gear and got us some comfy outdoor chairs.
He always brings firewood, so we can have a campfire.
Light the perimeter.
My husband also ordered indoor outdoor rope lighting like these for the perimeter of the camp after the first couple of excursions. It is very dark at night in the woods, so lighting is important. (GuoTonG 50ft/15m Plugin Rope Lights, 540 Daylight White LEDs, 110V, 2 Wire, Waterproof,Connectable, Power Socket Connector Fuse Holder, Indoor/Outdoor Use, Ideal for Backyards, Decorative Lighting) We don’t want to trip and bust it at night when we take the dogs out. It also illuminates the edge of our campsite so the kids stay close.
When our grandkids joined us, he picked up rubber tipped skewers for making s’mores on the fire. (Barbeqa Campfire Marshmallow Roasting Sticks Telescoping 32″ Long 4 Person Smores Set ) We purchased a couple of board games suited to them too.
My husband grills sausage and makes scrambled eggs for breakfast when we camp, so we bring folding tables and a portable grill.
Char-Broil Portable 240 Liquid Propane Gas Grill
We also have one of those outdoor kitchenettes on our travel trailer, which includes a mini fridge and stove top. He can cook for a bunch with the portable grill and camper’s outdoor cooktop, outdoor fridge, and a cooler near by. I am so glad we chose a trailer with an outdoor kitchen!
There is nothing better than hot coffee and breakfast outdoors in the morning chill with a view of the lake. It cures a lot of ills.
At night, we sit by the fire with a glass of wine or a steaming cup of coffee. We make hot chocolate for the grands and talk for hours. I purchased acrylic wine glasses (TaZa Unbreakable Stemless Wine Glasses: Elegant Shatterproof Tritan Plastic Outdoor Cups with Weighted Base | Dishwasher-Safe | Smooth Rims | 16 Ounce | Set of 4 )so I can drink wine from a beautiful glass when Glamping. I bought acrylic dinnerware too, because everything in a camper needs to be unbreakable and lightweight for storage and safety. Broken glass is discouraged when your accommodations are on wheels and weight matters when you pull your accommodations behind you.
I’ve got to get the cooler ready with staples from the fridge and things to grill.
Funny how we seem to put more effort into meals when we camp. More finesse, better quality, less quantity.
I am going to check my running list of must haves in my phone, things not to forget, things we realize we needed last time and gather them up.
Our travel trailer camper is a second home. It is our home away from home, where we can escape a little and where I can enjoy the Glamp.