Tent Camping Essentials
Camping Safety

The Top 5 Camping Safety Tips

How often do you go camping? Camping safety is an important element of every trip. This is true for beginners but also for seasoned campers. It can be easy to head out to your favorite camping spot and forget about simple things like campsite safety. 

Check out this guide to the top 5 camping safety tips that you should know before you pack up the tent and head out for your next adventure. 

1. Wildlife Education and Preparedness

When it comes to maintaining safety when camping, it’s important to know and understand the wildlife in your camping location. What type of measures can you take to protect you and fellow campers against the risks of certain wildlife?

For example, if you are camping in an area that is known to have bears, you need to be mindful of packing up food and putting it away. Otherwise, bears in the area might feel that the food you left out is an open invitation to dinner.

When you’re out camping, there will be a variety of different types of wildlife. Some of them are mostly harmless while others can be dangerous. Educate yourself on the area and know what wildlife you could potentially see. Learn how to react or respond to the local wildlife as well.

Most of the time, the best thing you can do is not approach and remain calm. However, that may not always be the case. Prepare before you head out. 

2.   Weather Aware for Camping Safety

We certainly have no control over Mother Nature and what she might throw at us. However, we do have control over planning for the weather. You can be prepared should bad weather hit while you’re camping. 

water safety when camping

Your tent safety and your campsite safety rely on being ready for the weather that could arise. It’s a good idea to pack for a variety of weather situations. When you’re out camping, it can get pretty chilly at night. You might experience hot and sunny days but cold and freezing nights. Make sure to have supplies and clothing for both elements. Eric and I will always pack all-weather jackets (regardless of what the weather says when set out camping. This Marmot PreCip Jacket is Eric’s go Lightweight waterproof jacket

Of course, then you have things like wind and rain to also keep a watch for. Again, you can’t stop Mother Nature, but you can react as needed. If a storm were to pick up, you need to be confident your tent is properly anchored and belongings are secured.

You may need to also have a water flap or tarp covering your tent and personal belongings to protect them in case of rain. Have somewhere safe where you can wait out a storm if necessary.

3.   Fire Safety When Camping

Fire Safety when camping
RV Park Campfire in Front of Motorhome Pitch. Summer Camping with Motorhome.

It can be a lot of fun to prepare meals around a campfire, make yummy smores, or even just sit and chat around the warm fire. But there are also several camping safety elements that relate directly to fire care and safety.  We always carry a portable fire safety extinguisher like the StaySafe 5-in 2 extinguisher just in case something goes wrong.  

There are several things you can do to be proactive with campsite safety when a campfire is involved. Check these out.

  • Always ensure someone is monitoring the fire. Don’t walk away and leave it burning.
  • Things like shovels and a bucket of water can be helpful fire safety equipment to have close by.
  •   Be mindful of the location of your campfire. Keep it in a semi-open area away from flammable items or low-hanging tree branches.
  •  Enclose the fire using a fire ring, rock circle, or some similar setup
  •  When you turn in or prepare to exit the campsite, put the fire out completely
  • Watch for wind that could be dangerous with a campfire

These are just a few minor things you can do to keep everyone around you safe.

4.   Bring First Aid and Survival Tools

No matter how careful you are about safety when camping, accidents and mishaps can still occur. Someone could take a tumble, walk through poison ivy, get bit by a bug, or any number of things.

Never head out camping without bringing along first aid and a camping survival kit. A kit provides valuable tools for handling the unexpected.

It’s better to always have these things with you and never need them than to have an incident occur and not be ready to handle it. First aid kits should have things like band aids, gauze, cleaning ointments, and other similar items at a minimum. A well-stocked kit will also have scissors, heavy bandages, poison ivy treatment, and additional tools.

A camping survival kit will have things like a compass, water sieve, multi-tools, and small tools that can help you when you need it most. For a more detailed breakdown check out our dedicated page on Camping Essentials

5.   Food and Water Safety

Finally, food and water safety are important things to consider. All food should be stored up nice and tight and put away to keep it from tenting wildlife. Coolers should be kept stocked with ice so that nothing that needs to stay cool goes bad. We love the Rubbermaid ActionPacker Lockable Industrial Storage Container – its virtually indestructible, the double-walled lid fits tightly for extra protection and its water-resistant feature will keep your food dry when camping in the rain

It’s also important to have clean water for drinking and staying hydrated. You can bring bottled water. If for some reason you have to collect water, take the time to understand the safety protocol for using that water. This goes for both cooking and drinking. You can’t just fill up pots and pans from the river. You may need to boil water or find a clean water source to utilize.  

Always check that things get properly cooked before eating. Using a campfire or grill might take a bit longer than your oven at home but cooking at safe temperatures is still important to avoid food poisoning or illnesses at the campsite.

Final Thoughts

These are some of the most basic things to practice when you are camping to keep you and your loved ones safe. Get out there and enjoy your adventure but always be mindful and aware of safety elements around you. Also, here is our rundown of 9 common mistakes we made when camping for the first time.