Camping Gear List
Camping & Outdoors

The Complete Camping Gear List for Your Next Adventure

Revised: 4/13/2023

Here is a curated Camping Gear List of Top-Notch camping gear you Need for any camping adventure.

If you’ve never been camping before or you’re not an expert, you might wonder about the importance of having the right gear, but you can certainly never underestimate that importance. The truth is, the right camping gear can mean the difference between a fun, safe outing and a total disaster.

The first thing you should do is make a list so nothing important is overlooked or forgotten. The right camping gear list can help you prepare for the entire trip, and it’ll always include things such as sleeping bags, stoves, food, water purification devices, flashlights, and numerous other items.

I. Essential Camping Gear for Camping Trips: What to Include on Your Camping Gear List

The gear for your next camping trip is usually broken down into two parts: the essential items that you can’t do without, and the convenience items that simply make the trip more comfortable. Let’s take a look at the essentials first.

1. Tent

The first thing to do when deciding on what tent to get is to decide which of the features is most important to you – the size of the tent, the season you’ll be camping in, or the weight of the tent. Keep in mind that even if the tent claims to be big enough for a certain number of people, that doesn’t mean it’s going to be comfortable with those people in it.

This is why buying a tent a little bigger than what you think you’ll need is a good idea. Also look at weight and seasonality when buying this type of camping gear because if you’ll be carrying it around a lot or camp in different seasons, this is important.

2. Sleeping Bag

No camping gear list is complete without a sleeping bag, and most experts recommend adding a sleeping pad, pillow, and blankets to the mix. Make sure you get a sleeping bag that can accommodate the temperature you’ll be exposed to on your outing and go ahead and spend just a bit more money to make sure the sleeping bag is sturdy and long-lasting.

You’ll also need to make sure the size is right so that you’re not uncomfortable as you sleep or toss and turn during the night.

3. Stove

Unless you don’t plan to cook on your outing, which is doubtful, you’ll need a good stove, along with utensils, dishes, and cooking pans. There are tons of cooking supplies made just for camping, and as far as the stove goes, buying a two-burner propane stove allows you to cook on one burner while boiling water for coffee on the other.

There are numerous types of camping stoves, so it’s easy to find one that suits your needs regardless of your budget. You’ll also need to make sure you have a good cooler.

4. Food!

Food is an essential item on any camping gear list because camping involves physical activity and exposure to the elements, which can increase the body’s need for nutrients. The right foods can provide the energy needed for hiking, setting up camp, and other physical activities.

Additionally, camping can limit access to restaurants and grocery stores, making it necessary to bring enough food to last for the duration of the trip. Proper food storage and preparation are also essential to avoid foodborne illness. Ultimately, bringing the right foods can make the camping experience more enjoyable and help campers stay healthy and energized.

5. Water Bottle and Purification System

When you’re camping, you won’t usually know how good the water source is, so a good water bottle with a filter or some type of water purification system is highly recommended. After all, you don’t want to get sick or end up in the hospital because you drank unfiltered water out of a creek or lake.

There are very simple ways to purify the water you drink, including tablets that are simply dropped into the water bottle and which get rid of all bacteria and germs. The point is, some type of purification of the water is imperative when you’re camping.

6. Flashlight (with extra batteries, or rechargeable)

A flashlight will be used more than you realize on your camping trip, and make sure you always have an extra set of batteries as well. Make sure it’s on your Camping Gear List. You’ll want to go with a brand that is reputable so that the flashlight is reliable, and if you decide you don’t want to bring a flashlight for some reason, at least bring along a headlamp that allows you to view your surroundings if you get up in the middle of the night. Also, bring extra batteries or get a flashlight that is rechargeable via solar panels/dynamo.

7. Table and Chairs

A table and a few chairs are necessary because no one wants to sit on the ground when eating or relaxing. Again, tables and chairs made specifically for camping are easy to find, and keep in mind that mesh chairs will dry quickly if they’re exposed to rain or dew.

When it comes to basic camping gear, these are items considered very important to campers because you might even need a good folding table and chairs when fishing or resting.

8. First Aid Kit

When you’re out in the elements, you never know what’s going to happen, but accidents such as bug bites and splinters are not that uncommon. When you’re planning your camping gear list, it’s easy to forget this item, but if you need it while you’re camping, it’ll be worth its weight in gold.

Buy a good kit that has all of the basics and then some, including band-aids, cotton gauze, itch cream, small scissors, medical tape, and anything else you might need while you’re out.

II. Additional Gear and Supplies You Should Bring

Your backpack can only hold so many items, but you will likely still need other supplies besides the ones already mentioned. Many of the following items are for convenience only, but you should still consider taking them along if you can. Here are some items that can make your camping trip much easier on everyone.

  • Ax or saw
  • Binoculars
  • Books/pens/notebooks, etc.
  • Clothesline and clips, or a heavy-duty hanger
  • Dry plastic bags
  • Firewood
  • Games or toys (Specially for the little ones)
  • Hammer
  • Hammock or cot
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Headphones and music source
  • Rug
  • Small broom and dustpan
  • Sunscreen
  • Sunshade or tarp
  • Swiss army knife or multi-purpose tool
  • Toilet paper
  • Toiletries
  • Towels

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III. Tips for Selecting the Right Camping Supplies

When you’re shopping for items to add to your camping gear list, the task is much easier if you follow a few simple tips, including the following:

  • Consider the type of camping you do. As mentioned earlier, the type of camping you’ll be participating in directly affects the supplies and gear you’ll end up buying.
  • Consider the season and the weather. You may need rain gear or extra blankets, depending on what time of year you’re camping and what the weather forecast looks like.
  • Consider the size and weight of the gear. If you’re backpacking long distances, you don’t want gear that is too heavy, and if you’re bringing more than one person with you, you’ll have to make sure your tent is big enough to accommodate everyone.
  • Consider the price of the gear. Everyone has a budget, and while price shouldn’t be your biggest deciding factor, for most of us, it has to be considered when buying supplies and gear.
  • Consider the overall quality of the gear you buy. You usually don’t have to spend a ton of money to get high-quality items, but it’s best not to go with the cheapest ones, either.
  • Consider the brand of the gear. Certain brands are better than others, and if you like, you can go to third-party sites and read reviews from real-life customers so you can get a feel for the products and how good they are.
  • Consider the conveniences you may want. Some people prefer camping with just the basics, while others want to make sure they have a lot of “convenience” items. You can enjoy your camping trip a lot more when you decide what type of camper you are and plan accordingly.

When buying camping gear, you have to use some common sense. If you’re going to an area where you know there will be mosquitoes, bring along some bug repellant. If you already know the temperatures are going to dip during the night, bring an extra blanket or two. 

If you want to feel like you’re at home as you camp, make sure your camping gear list includes journals to write in or books to read, or maybe even your computer. It’s really up to you, but planning ahead of time is the best thing to do.

Our Expert Advise

The importance of an essential camping gear list for your next camping trip cannot be overstated. Indeed, a camping trip can quickly turn from fun to miserable if you forget to bring something important. Fortunately, a list helps you remember both the necessities and the items brought along to make the trip more convenient and more fun. 

This is why both inexperienced and even experienced campers should spend time making a comprehensive list of needed items, and the list should be looked at before each and every one of your camping trips.

Interactive Camping Gear Packing List

Use this list on your device to help you pack your gear.

Essential Camping Gear:
  Sleeping pads
  Inflatable pillows
  Warm Blanket

  Stove

  Compass, Map of the area

  Bug spray

  Battery bank
  Table and Chairs
Convenience Gear & Other Equipment:

Ax or saw 
Knife
Binoculars
Books/pens/notebooks, etc.
Bug repellant
Clothesline and clips
Dry plastic bags
Firewood
Games or toys (Specially for the little ones)
Hammer
Hammock or cot
Hand sanitizer
Headphones and music source Rug
Small broom and dustpan
Sunscreen
Sunshade or tarp
Swiss army knife or multi-purpose tool
Toilet paper
Toiletries
Towels

Meet the Author

Fernando Larez

Fernando is a father of 3 active kids, professional marketer and an outdoors enthusiast. He enjoys mountain biking, camping and road trips, and he is a proud contributor at Extreme Outfitters.

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2 thoughts on “The Complete Camping Gear List for Your Next Adventure

  1. Barbara Crosby says:

    You forget food

    1. Fernando Larez says:

      HI Barbara, thanks for the comment! Yes, food is very important (obviously), I wanted to focus on the equipment, but you have a good point. I’ll add that in.

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