There are literally thousands of camping survival tips you can learn and use to your advantage, however I won’t be posting them all in this very post, BUT I will be listing what I know that work and what you will benefit from as well. Camping in the great outdoors is an awesome journey to embark on, whether it be for 1 night or 7 nights, you can never have enough knowledge about Mother Nature, so learn these survival tips below and camp like a champ!
Pre-Plan Cooking Items
At the start of my camping journey, I found that cooking meals were the most stressful times, that is why I learned to prepare my meals before I leave, ultimately making my whole camping trip 100x simpler.
Some of my favorite cooking meals:
- Burritos wrapped in tin foil
- Pancakes (leave pancake batter in a Ziploc bag until ready to cook)
- Baked Beans
Create A Boot Rack
It’s never a good thing when your boots get wet, especially in the wild with no alternative, create a boot rack beforehand and be prepared for when the unknown does happen.
Note: Only recommended for car campers. This item is just too big for hikers or backpackers.
- Find a log with 2 branches hanging off of it, make sure the branches are large enough to hold your boots upright
- Cut the log 2-feet long using a chainsaw or handsaw
- Stand the log upright and cut it down the center so you can lay it flat on the ground without it rolling around
Take this with you in your car when you go camping and have a boot dryer ready to go.
Easy Shelter With Tarp
If you’re suddenly caught in the rain before you get time to put up your shelter up, you will now have to set up a quick-tarp shelter.
- Determine where the wind is heading
- Stake a corner of the tarp into the ground, facing the wind
- On the other corner – stand a pole up, or use a stick if you don’t have one
- Now attach a rope or guy line to the top of the pole/stick and guide it into the ground and stake it down. You can also guide it to a tree if there’s one nearby
- There are 2 more corners remaining, stretch them out and stake them down
This quickly-set shelter will stand up in high winds, protect you from the rain, and provide excellent drainage.
Chop Wood The Correct Way
This is basic wood cutting 101, yet I see a lot of people still making this simple mistake. Don’t try to chop a large-diameter wooden slab in the center, this will only damage your handle or get the axe stuck.
Instead you should cut chunks off the side of the slab and move your way around it.
When you have (eventually, depending on the size) cut down the wooden slab to a manageable size, then you can proceed to chop it down the middle.
Campfire Temperature Hack
As your fire is blazing away:
- Get 4 pieces of even(ish) rocks and put them in a square shape
- Place your cooking tray over the rocks
- Use a stick to rake hot coals from under the fire and drag them under your tray (evenly to provide steady heat)
This not only stops you from burning your food but you can also adjust the temperature by adding or removing coals as you wish.
Natural Compass Hack
We should be getting taught this in school, it’s basic science yet survival is completely overlooked in the education system, I don’t know why and I don’t know if they’re doing anything about it.
But you are here now and you are learning, we can find North, South, East, West, simply by following the sun! The sun will rise approx. in the East and set in the West, this is ANYWHERE in the world.
Stop Shoelaces from Snagging Or Untying
I wish I thought of this one earlier, wrap your shoelace once around the top of your boots, tie them with a square knot at the back of your boots.
For protection you could:
-Add duct tape around the shoelace to hold it in place
-Fold your socks down over top of the shoelace
-Do both for maximum protection
Wet Electronic Device (OH NO!)
Dropping your phone, GPS or handheld radio in a puddle might seem like a disaster, don’t let it get you down and ruin your trip – there’s still a good tactic we can try to get it up and running again.
- Put the soaked device in a Ziploc bag with raw rice
- Let it sit for 24 hours
The beauty of this technique? When internal parts heat up, it can make the parts warp and break – rice will absorb the moisture without applying any heat!
Baby Powder And Sand
We all know how much of a nuisance wet sand is on the feet, and how hard it is to remove.
Remember to bring some baby powder the next time you go in the outdoors and sprinkle some baby powder on your feet where the sand is sitting, the baby powder will absorb the water instantly and you can then proceed to brush the sand off
Hike/Explore The Smart Way
Before you set out on a hike or exploring mission, remember to always know what time you left and what time you arrived at your destination, this will give you a good baseline on how much time it will take to get back to your campsite before dark.
More often that not we underestimate how long we have been exploring for – this results in a crazy nighttime bush-walking mission, which is not good for someone who isn’t prepared or someone who will be shaking in their boots.
Reflect And Learn
After a long camping or hiking trip, always write down what you brought, stuff you wish you took with you, what you didn’t use but you brought it on the trip anyway.
Then the next time you go on a similar trip – you will know exactly what you need to take, so on and so forth
Wherever you get lost (or even if you’re on a day trip), always adapt to the environment. This is your most valuable resource in the wild, you don’t know how long you will be there for, so your chances of surviving will increase if you know where the nearest water source is, what your priorities are, your surroundings and learning to stay calm in any situation.
All in all, gaining as much knowledge as possible regarding the outdoors will help you connect a lot more with Mother Nature AND yourself, knowing more about yourself and what you want is a great asset to have, not many people can say what they want to do with their life.
If you want to connect with yourself by going on a solo camping mission then I suggest you read this article and learn how to get yourself ‘mentally’ prepared, what to do and what not to do.
If you found these tips helpful, please leave a comment below and tell me what you think.