How To Organize the Best Group Camping Trip
Camping with your spouse or family is a small ordeal, but once you add other families and friends to the mix, it requires a little bit of organization to help everyone keep their sanity, have fun, and stay safe. Check out these tips to turn your camping trip into an event everyone looks forward to each year.
Stay in the Loop
Before you can start the planning process, you’ve got to put some feelers out and gauge everyone’s interest. Reach out to friends and family members, find out who would be interested, and pick a weekend at least a month out. To avoid miscommunication, use a central planning hub such as a group text, Facebook, or Google Docs. While you have everyone connected, organize a gear share. Google Docs is the prime outlet to do this, as this document can be shared with and edited by anyone in the group. Having all the information in one central location allows the group to see everyone’s needs and how to fill them.
Choose a Recreational Camper
If your family and friends are opting for a trip with campers, this can change the math.
Everyone has their own setup and ability to bring whatever suits their needs. And having a few extra creature comforts can give anyone who’s new to camping the perfect way to ease into the idea. The most challenging issue will be figuring out where to go!
‘Safety first’ should be the motto on every camping trip. As you are preparing, address the following questions:
- What is the weather forecast and worst-case weather scenario?
- What dangers are associated with the area and planned activities?
- How far away is help and how can it be reached?
- Does anyone in the group have medical issues?
- Do we have the right tools and gear in the case of an emergency?
Disperse first-aid kits throughout the group with supplies such as bandages, antiseptic, pain relief, and treatment for cuts, burns, and stings. Ideally, there should be at least one person in your group who is trained in first-aid. Bring the proper storage for food to prevent close animal encounters, and treat all water appropriately. You should never drink directly from any body of water. Most camping trips aren’t complete without a campfire, but a fun gesture can quickly get out of hand. A campfire should never be left unattended so designate a fire monitor for each day of the trip who is responsible for knowing all associated dangers and making sure it is extinguished safely each night.
When you think of camping, some of the first activities to come to mind are hiking, fishing, canoeing, or biking, but with a large group, this is a great time to take it back to your childhood with some fun camp games. Play a competitive game of balloon battle by separating into two teams and tying a balloon to your ankle. Each team tries to burst their opponents balloon by stomping on it. This game is a great one to get everyone moving, and is sure to end in heaps of exhausted laughter.
If you’d prefer to leave the running to the kids, have a hula-hoop contest or play human tic-tac-toe. Perhaps you could have a s’more making contest or a burger cook-off. Amp up the fun by bringing fun prizes and having an awards ceremony at the end of the trip with fun awards such as “Most likely to snore like a bear” or “Most likely to burn their marshmallow.”
Group camping trips are a great experience as long as you plan ahead, stay safe, and have fun. Whether you venture out with close friends or have a family reunion, you are sure to remember this trip for years to come.
Published courtesy of Michael Bourke