The 6 Essentials You Need on a Camping Trip—A Basic Guide

camping trip

Camping trips, casual hikes, and even hunting expeditions all have one thing in common: they require you to bring just the right equipment. These are fun activities that help you get in touch with nature, but it’s crucial to remember that nature is not always so kind. Being prepared for when things can go wrong is essential, and the right gear won’t only make a day in the woods an enjoyable one but a safer experience too.

Whether you’re a camping first-timer or a seasoned trekker, bringing the right kind of camping gear is an absolute must, and packing the essentials is all you need since you don’t want your backpack’s weight to be a hindrance. 

Aside from the obvious food and water, here are some of the top hiking and camping essentials that you should take with you:

1. Navigation Tools

Since going deep into the woods will usually result in a loss of reception for mobile devices, the best option is to invest in trusty navigational tools, such as a topographic map and a compass. These may take a bit of time to familiarize yourself with or learn if you’re a first-time hiker, but they are perfect for the outdoors since they are lightweight, durable, and will never run out of batteries. 

Keep them in a waterproof case during your trip to protect them from the elements.

2. Extra Insulation Clothing Layers

You may start your hiking trip when the sun is out but arrive at your campsite completely drenched. Weather conditions will vary greatly on your camping trip, so it’s best to bring an extra insulation clothing layer, especially when the temperatures drop in the evening. 

For instance, packing a rain jacket and an extra down hooded jacket will keep you both warm and dry on your trip. 

3. Cooking Gear

One of the most fun parts about going on a camping trip is cooking food in the wilderness, so bring a lightweight cooking set, like the UST duo cook kit. This particular set has silicone-coated handles, so it’s safe to use and prevents burns. 

The foldable handles and drawstring mesh bag also allows easy storage and transport in your pack. Pair this with a pro cuber and fry cutter to make it easier to chop up ingredients for your meals. 

4. First Aid Kit

Having a complete first aid kit is a must when you go traveling into the back-country because it ensures your safety from minor ailments, such as cuts, bruises, and minor sprains. Pre-packaged kits work best for first-time campers, but as you gain more experience out on the trails, you’ll learn what to prioritize in your kit depending on your needs. Be sure to replace anything you’ve used as soon as you return from your trip to aptly prepare for your next hike.

5. Repair Kits and Tools

Having the right tools in your repair kit can come in handy in different situations, such as a detached shoe sole or a ripped sleeping bag. Besides duct tape, one of the most important tools you should have with you is a reliable hunting, fixed-blade, or multi-tool knife for cutting through various materials and surfaces. The right camping stores will offer a good selection of knives suitable for your trip. 

6. Light

There are times when a hike takes much longer than expected, and getting stuck in the woods while it’s dark can lead to more complications and difficulties with finding your way back. Although you may want to use your phone’s flashlight, conserving its battery is extremely important while you’re out. Investing in an outdoor flashlight with a powerful beam and long battery life or a headlamp is best for camping or hiking trips. 


Making the preparations for camping is part of the fun and is essential to your safety. It keeps the experience as comfortable and as convenient as possible, making it that much more fun! Finding the best outdoor stores near you to purchase the best quality gear will ensure tip-top performance and an investment that will last you many more trips in the coming years.

Here at, we are more than just a camping store in St. Louis, MO. We gear you up for any adventure coming your way, whether that’s boating, fishing, climbing, or hunting. Shop our apparel, equipment, and gear today!