There’s something really special about going out in the woods alone, or even going with a buddy and temporarily living with sweet Mother Nature. Whether it be for a few days or a few weeks, in this guide I’m going to show you exactly how to camp in the woods while taking full advantage of the great outdoors and maximizing opportunities.
First and foremost, I’m assuming you want to go backpacking out in the wild, with no noisy neighbors with screaming kids, or loud neighbors that stay up all night, and nowhere that you have to pay a booking fee.
This guide is strictly for wilderness use only, somebodies got to push the boundaries, right?
Let’s get right into it.
Step 1: Gather Your Gear/Equipment
Your first step is to get all your equipment ready, you know, the usual camping gear. However since it is only you and your buddy (I highly recommended taking a friend, for safety purposes) don’t forget to purchase a long haul backpack. Please don’t make the hefty mistake of taking a measly little Day Pack when you plan on going for a week-long trip in the outdoors 🙂
Write a list of what you’ll be taking and get it all prepared. Or to make things easier – Here’s a list to choose from.
Just remember to take only what you need, long hauls can be a lot harder if you’ve got too much luggage on your back. But please take plenty of water.
Step 2: Your Food
Firstly you need to figure out your plan of attack. “Brandon, What the hell is a plan of attack?” Well, will you be taking your own food or will you be working with Mother Nature to catch, kill and eat your own food? Figure out your plan and then move on to step number 3.
Of course if you decide to take the caveman route, where you kill, cook and eat your own food it might be a good idea to pack some “backup” food just in case you have a hard time catching wild animals, thus having to cut your trip short. (A few cans of baked beans or spaghetti is completely fine).
Pros – Take your own food and you won’t have to cut your trip short because you have nothing to eat.
Cons – This will take up extra space in your inventory.
Step 3: Determine Your Location
Now that you have all your camping gear ready to go, it is time to choose a location you want to commute to.
First, I highly recommend you do your research on that area, what animals are prone to be there? Any murders happened near that area? Just get a general idea of the remote location and decide if you want to hike to that area, or move on to the next.
Of course there’s going to be various species of wildlife, so I hope you’re ready! And don’t forget your bear spray!
Step 4: Write Down Your Plan
I’m not telling you to write down every single detail, but it’s good to have an idea of what you’ll be doing for the upcoming days.
Day 1 – Get campsite setup.
Day 2 – Hunt for food, or go for a hike if you brought your own food.
Day 3 – Do some more adventuring.
Day 4 – Treasure hunting, cave hunting etc, etc.
This is better than getting out in the wild and running out of ideas/activities to pursue.
Step 5: Setting Out On Your Journey
I recommend you get someone to drop you off near that location, and you walk/hike the rest of the way. Or if you really want to be a bad ass you can walk the whole way.
I don’t recommend driving to the location, THEN heading out on your journey, for the simple fact that your car is in danger of getting stolen or tampered with, and there’s less stress on you without having to worry about it, meaning more time to relax while enjoying the outdoors.
The best time to depart on your journey: Early in the morning.
Step 6: Setting Up Your Campsite
When you get into the wild it is time to set up your campsite. This is why I recommend you head out on your journey early in the morning, giving you more time to prepare your tent, campfire and materials.
Shelter is #1 priority. Get your tent assembled before doing anything else.
But of course you want to do a little exploring to determine where you want to place your tent for the time of your trip.
Here’s a few tips for you to remember:
- Choose flat ground – A flat ground is always the best place to pitch your tent. It could mean the difference between a good night’s sleep and waking up in a deadly flood.
- Avoid ditches – Don’t make the rookie mistake of placing your tent in a valley, thinking you’re safe from wind and sun. If it rains badly, you may wake up in a huge puddle with all your equipment completely soaked, cutting your journey short.
If you can’t find any flat surfaces and you absolutely HAVE to pitch your tent on a sloped area, make sure you sleep with your head uphill and your feet downhill.
- Consider The Sun – Try to find a shady area to camp in, your tents exposure to the sun can deteriorate the tent faster whilst making your tent sauna-like (Making you feel like your sitting in an oven or something, lol).
- Consider the wind – Determine where the general wind direction will be, don’t fight against Mother Nature, but simply work with her by facing your tents opening area away from the wind to avoid your tent from flapping around in the middle of the night.
- Consider The Water – Some people think it’s safer to be close to water just in case they run out of their supply, however if a flash flood comes along and washes your site away you will not be happy. Avoid this by setting down close to the water, but not too close where you’re putting yourself in danger.
Step 7: Preparing For Your First Night
Now that you have your tent set up, make sure you
get a good campfire going and dinner cooking, if it’s getting closer to that time.
If it’s still early and you have plenty of time for adventure, then that’s what I highly recommend! Take full opportunity while you can.
Step 8: Follow Your Plan
If you wrote down what you’ll be doing for the upcoming days then I suggest you follow that for the rest of your camping trip.
Or if you decided to free ball it, then the world is your oyster and I encourage you to do as much outdoor adventuring as you can, whether it be with your friend or by yourself. Stay safe!
Step 9: Some Important Things To Consider
- Always take enough water, and remember to drink it throughout the day
- Don’t forget a first aid kit
- Be ready for the best and worst weather, you can never be too prepared
- Don’t overlook the importance of researching the area
- Be safe at all times – I don’t care how experienced you are
- Take the correct type of backpack – A long haul backpack is highly recommended
- Never use fuel-burning appliances inside the tent or enclosed shelter as they can release dangerous levels of carbon monoxide which can cause illnesses and death
- Have a backup flashlight in case one gets damaged or wet – Check out the J5 Tactical Light!
Step 10: Leave Without A Trace
I always have 1 rule when I go camping, and that is to leave Mother Nature the way you left her. Dispose of your waste, and leave without a trace, so the next person/people that come camping in that same area, can see that no one was ever there!
That’s the only promise I want you to make me. Good, then have fun on your outdoor adventure while you’re out there with no boss telling you what to do, and no strict rules to follow.
It is a wonderful opportunity to head out and temporarily stay with Mother Nature, and please remember you can’t work against her so work with her, because she WILL win.
If you follow my steps then I promise you, you are going to have a hell of a fun time, and it’s even better with 2-3 people. It’s also a lot safer too.
There’s a lot of adventuring to do so get out there and have some fun!
Do you have any questions regarding this article? Hit that contact button, or send me a quick comment below, I’d be happy to hear from you.