Camping Made Easier - Ideas and Tips

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MisterE

Social climber
Topic Author's Original Post - Feb 14, 2013 - 12:24am PT
I have two that have made the grab-n-go easier, please share your organizational/compacting/stream-lining camping ideas here.

#1: Cut down the handle on a #2 filter holder to fit in the pot (I also keep filters, a pocket Rocket, tank and lighter in a bag with the pot):

Credit: MisterE

Credit: MisterE

#2: screw a cutting board to the top of your cooler:

photo not found
Missing photo ID#289578

Please contribute your ideas!
donini

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
Feb 14, 2013 - 12:29am PT
A credit card is much lighter and more compactible than a sleeping bag.
The Warbler

climber
the edge of America
Feb 14, 2013 - 12:35am PT
Bring a small chainsaw for cutting dead Mesquite trunks when in Baja, you can fend off banditos with it in a pinch.
MisterE

Social climber
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 14, 2013 - 12:37am PT
A credit card is much lighter and more compactible than a sleeping bag

That is exactly what I thought when I rode my bike from NW Washington to California with panniers, and met the guy with an extra pair of shorts and a credit card. Unfortunately, work was the substitute for wealth, as it is still.

Thanks for the reminder, Jim. :)
donini

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
Feb 14, 2013 - 12:38am PT
On a serious note, check out the new Jetboil stove. It works waaay better (and is slightly lighter) than the original in cold conditions and high altitude.
drljefe

climber
El Presidio San Augustin del Tucson
Feb 14, 2013 - 12:47am PT
Water.

I still adhere to two liter soda bottles.
They stash under car seats, get thrown in the pack for a day of climbing, and break down when they're empty.

I tried a "cube" once and other water vessels but they just take up too much room and I've always driven small cars.
jamatt

Social climber
Asheville, NC
Feb 14, 2013 - 12:56am PT
I always premix instant coffee, p-milk and sugar for easy trail-a-cinos. Cafe Bustillo instant is not too bad.
Reilly

Mountain climber
The Other Monrovia- CA
Feb 14, 2013 - 01:18am PT
Always take fishing gear, ya never know...







































Credit: Reilly
Chaz

Trad climber
greater Boss Angeles area
Feb 14, 2013 - 01:35am PT
Mr Donini's right. "A credit card is much lighter and more compactible than a sleeping bag."

And makes for a way quicker take off in the morning.

Here's Roughing It, right here:



Santa Nella Holiday Inn. No extra charge for the Cornfield View rooms.
Clint Cummins

Trad climber
SF Bay area, CA
Feb 14, 2013 - 01:52am PT
Use cans. No need for stove or cooler.

Note: it helps if you don't drink coffee, and you climb until well after dark and are very hungry for dinner! I don't heat up the cans - don't think it is worth the time, for me. It doesn't matter much to me what is in the can, either.... "I came here to climb, not eat!" :-)
Chaz

Trad climber
greater Boss Angeles area
Feb 14, 2013 - 02:03am PT
Cook in the cans, too.

Use the can opener to poke a vent hole in the top of the can, and boil it in a pan of water. You can go do something else while your cans are boiling.

I like the Mexican Fiesta, bioled in cans. Canned tamales, canned refried beans, and if you look around, you can find canned Mexican rice. Feeds two.
hooblie

climber
from out where the anecdotes roam
Feb 14, 2013 - 03:35am PT
water

use your cook pot to mold frozen plates at home, zip lock them
and toss 'em under your pack in the sled strapped to the roof.

i've tried melting snow. that goes along with
digging roots ... you know, plane crash stuff

well, maybe not so much in tucson
QITNL

climber
Feb 14, 2013 - 04:14am PT



eKat

Trad climber
Less than a second shy of 49 minutes
Feb 14, 2013 - 07:53am PT
ICE CHEST

Freeze a dry bag full of water and use it for ice. As it melts, pour it out and replace the water with loose ice from the store.

It keeps your ice chest dry so stuff doesn't get all soggy and wrecked.

BitchenKitchen!

eKat

Trad climber
Less than a second shy of 49 minutes
Feb 14, 2013 - 07:55am PT
Seal-a-meal. . . FOOD SAVER

Make dinners and suck wrap 'em. Then all you have to do is boil some water, throw in the dinner, boil and serve. No messy pots!

BitchenKitchen!
locker

Social climber
FukUville
Feb 14, 2013 - 11:17am PT


I'm not sure about that cooking in cans idea...

I think most are lined with something...

and BPA comes to mind...







nutjob

Sport climber
Almost to Hollywood, Baby!
Feb 14, 2013 - 11:33am PT
When I go car-camping with kids, I try to have most of my ice be in the form of frozen beverages: 64oz soy milk boxes, or individual juice packs (learned this trick from Em), and then individual cold packs for the rest to keep things from getting soggy (like eKat says). Also keep frozen chicken apple sausages, turkey bacon, etc.

For camp4 or other quick bivvies, I like to keep my sleeping bag loosely packed in the longer term storage sack, with a ridge rest wrapped around the outside. It's light and easy to grab quickly, and very quick to break down / make a quick exit when needed.

Pressure cookers are key for car-camping (and maybe long backpacking if you insist on cooking things). Altitude-agnostic, efficient fast cooking. Opens up menu options you would generally not consider when camping.

I keep a stash of candles and mosquito coils in my kitchen bag. I dislike the big campsite lanterns that many people are fond of.

Glow sticks are nice to keep in the tent for kids that aren't used to sleeping in the dark yet.

I keep a huge tarp and variety of ropes/parachute cord for quick rigging dry secure areas between trees, over a picnic table, etc. Really improves quality of life for car-camping trips where rain is likely.

A shovel in the car keeps you in compliance with forest service requirements for campfire permits, and it opens up a lot of possibilities for last-minute camping when you can't get a reservation in a regular campsite and you want the campfire experience (or just to cook your dinner).
nature

climber
Boulder, CO
Feb 14, 2013 - 11:34am PT
Credit: nature

Credit: nature

Credit: nature

Credit: nature
Jon Beck

Trad climber
Oceanside
Feb 14, 2013 - 11:39am PT
Save some bucks on propane, refill the small cannisters

http://www.harborfreight.com/catalogsearch/result?q=propane+refill

Propane refill adaptder
Propane refill adaptder
Credit: Jon Beck
TwistedCrank

climber
Dingleberry Gulch, Ideeho
Feb 14, 2013 - 11:46am PT
For multi day trips in the backcounty, these are awesome. It's a stuffsack in the pack then it's a rucksack for a dash up a peak. Lightweight, yet comfy.

And they come in so many different colors too!

REI done good by these.

Credit: TwistedCrank
nature

climber
Boulder, CO
Feb 14, 2013 - 11:50am PT
the problem I see with the cutting board on top of the cooler is you've either eliminated its use as a seat (common) of someones ass is gonna smell like onion.
ruppell

climber
Feb 14, 2013 - 11:56am PT
Plus what if your chopping some dinner and need a beer?
nature

climber
Boulder, CO
Feb 14, 2013 - 11:57am PT
yeah.... i'm thinking FAIL! on the cutting board gimick ;)


When we spent those years developing out at Winslow and heading out EVERY weekend I found having a tote with all the kitchen stuff in it and devoted to only camping made life much easier. I also had a few extra plates, knives, forks, cutting boards and I'd just toss them in a plastic bag when dirty and do them when we got home. Saved time and water (in the desert).

You know those plastic tops you can put on an open can? I cut a small hole in the top of one that a fork handle could fit through. It was for canned dog food so I'd leave the fork in there and not have to deal with a dirty dog food fork.
ruppell

climber
Feb 14, 2013 - 12:01pm PT
Honestly the handiest "trick" I have is a folding chair. No joke my first road trip I didn't have one for about six months. I would just sit on, you guessed it, the cooler. lol Finally decided to buy one to see what all the hype was about. Now I never go anywhere without one.
covelocos

Trad climber
Nor Cal
Feb 14, 2013 - 12:20pm PT
http://www.biolitestove.com/campstove/camp-overview/features/
Mungeclimber

Trad climber
the crowd MUST BE MOCKED...Mocked I tell you.
Feb 14, 2013 - 12:22pm PT
action packers, each one is some 'set' of gear.

one is BitchenKitchen stuff, including JetBoil coffee kit.
one is assorted sundries like batteries, bug repellant, small children, and sunscreen.

one is food stuffs for meals and snacks


sort the order of the packers by which one you'll need first, or blend a single easy to reach 'fast reaction' packer with coffee, sunscreen and food.


or be like me and toss whatever into the closest one until it's a cluster, then re-org it later.
Cosmiccragsman

Trad climber
AKA Dwain, from Apple Valley, Ca. and Vegas!
Feb 14, 2013 - 01:03pm PT
A COMBO porta potty, camp stove, and bunwarmer!































































photo not found
Missing photo ID#289618
guyman

Social climber
Moorpark, CA.
Feb 14, 2013 - 01:38pm PT
heading out EVERY weekend I found having a tote with all the kitchen stuff in it and devoted to only camping made life much easier. I also had a few extra plates, knives, forks, cutting boards and I'd just toss them in a plastic bag when dirty and do them when we got home.

Heck... I thought I invented that.

Also instead of buying ice, just make your own in those disposal Glad plastic storage containers. 6 or 7 of those really keeps coolers cold -good for a weekend.

Im not down with the cooler top - cutting board - the cooler is a table or a seat.

I hate the fold up seats they now sell that are made in CHINA .... your ass sinks way down and it's not a good way to sit when your cooking. The old style alumium folding chair... you know the ones with woven plastic slatts to sit on and they work really well in mud.

I have a Folding Table .... made by HONDA and supplied on the early CRV models. It's sturdy, small and compact.

Also: I like to use those CHEAP- BLUE TARPS, to put all the stuff on and to use as a "Kitchen Floor" keeps all your stuff cleaner and stops dust and crap from getting in your food and helps keep you car clean when you pack the stuff back in.

Bring a extra one and some 4 mm cord to make a roof for your Kitchen if it rains.

I like to camp well and eat well.... the thought of eating CANNED food turns my stomach.

Good topic Mr. E .... looking fdw to reading more.

locker

Social climber
FukUville
Feb 14, 2013 - 01:47pm PT


I mostly car camp these days...

So it's not a huge problem taking more than needed to make sure that I am in, "CRUISING mode"...

That said, if I am only going out for a few days, I pretty much pre-cook MOST of my meals...

briham89

Big Wall climber
san jose, ca
Feb 14, 2013 - 01:50pm PT
Anyone using an outback oven? I'm thinking about getting one.
Jon Beck

Trad climber
Oceanside
Feb 14, 2013 - 01:51pm PT
A COMBO porta potty, camp stove, and bunwarmer!

throw some ice in the bowl and slap a cutting board on the lid and I would say you got yourself a winner there Cosmic!
GhoulweJ

Trad climber
El Dorado Hills, CA
Feb 14, 2013 - 01:54pm PT
Fletcher

Trad climber
The great state of advaita
Feb 14, 2013 - 02:13pm PT
With little kids, I do a lot of car camping. The "no limit to what you can take" rule ends up having limits. Especially when you start adding kids!

Used to roll out the door and through a few things to go to JT pre-kids. Now, it takes all sorts of quartermasterly logistics just to get on the road. Now moving into the less is more direction once again.

When I went to Facelift, I packed as though I had three kids! Ha ha! Going to JT on my own this weekend. Won't make that mistake so soon again!

I am a big fan of action packers (or other storage bins that work for you). Everything has a home in the garage and on the road with those.

One thing I find really useful is I keep box each of quart and gallon ziploc bags in one of the action packers. These are my new duct tape. Many uses, but finally got wise after planning lunches (sandwiches) for day hikes and then realizing after I made them, had nothing to put them in. This lead to some interesting improvisation (which is kind of what being in the outdoors is about, anyhow!).

I also bring a plastic dishpan for washing dishes in camp. Then I realized it would be even better to have two (one wash, one rinse). They just nest in each other and weight difference is negligible.

Eric
Fletcher

Trad climber
The great state of advaita
Feb 14, 2013 - 02:26pm PT
Credit cards.

Reminds me of a New Yorker cartoon from years back: a naked woman is standing in front of a department store. Caption reads "Well, here I am at Bloomingdales... naked and with a credit card!"

I'm sure I didn't think this one up, but I've always liked the idea of vacations where all you bring is a "credit card and a thong" (insert one essential piece of gear for "thong" if you like!).

Maybe not in wilderness, but you can always get what you need (maybe not "want") wherever you go in the world. I realized this early when packing to go from New England to Wisconsin to work at a summer camp. I had bought a summer's worth of soap and was trying to fit it into my bags. That's when a friend commented, "You know, Eric, they do have soap in Wisconsin." :-)

And sometimes, even in wilderness you can get stuff you need. I was trekking in Nepal in the Annapurna region. The group I was with wanted to go "off the beaten path" and not on the traditional trekking circuits between villages et al. So we ended up following shepherd's paths for a few days through jungle and forest up to one of the spurs of Machupuchare. We camped in a stunning meadow around 12,000'. No settlement around for miles and miles, though you could see villages thousands of feet below in the valleys.

Well, we thought we had to make do with what we had (which was pretty luxurious, all things considered), but later in the afternoon a guy shows up with a tump line attached to one of those old style metal coolers. It was filled with bottles of coke! Of course, I had to buy one! Tasted pretty good in that setting!

Eric
TheTye

Trad climber
Sacramento CA
Feb 14, 2013 - 03:37pm PT




AeroPress!!!!!
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