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Everything But The Kitchen Sink

Some people, when they travel, over pack and will bring everything except the kitchen sink. 

We have all seen this sort of person; the man struggling with several suitcases and carry-on bags at the airport, the woman at the beach who practically needs porters to transport her bag, umbrella, barbeque, dog, chair, wind-guard and picnic basket, or the student boarding a bus holding pillows and a duvet.  We sometimes feel sorry for these people when we see them struggling, but at times we think they should have planned their packing and their trip a little bit better.

It is a scenario repeated at campgrounds the world over; families, couples or groups, in an attempt to recreate all the comforts of home in an outdoor setting, go a little overboard and bring along tents that are far too complicated and advanced for their level of camping expertise.

These situations never end well; while Mom and Dad argue about which tent pole goes where and what gets set up first, the children run amok and may misbehave while their parents argy-bargy.  The couple who have never set up a tent before take the multi-roomed version out of the box only to find one wall has a tear in it, and the group setting up multiple units finds that someone forgot to bring the a bag that contained the tent stakes.  In all three cases, everyone ends up grumpy and can’t enjoy what should be a pleasant and relaxing holiday.

All tent manufacturers recommend that people should practice putting up their tent in their yard at home first a few times in order to become familiar with it; nobody wants to learn how to set up a tent under pressure.  Furthermore, by assembling it at home first, one can notice if there is any damage and can take steps to remedy it, avoiding unpleasant surprises.   Also, experts recommend that in order to simplify one’s camping holiday to make things more pleasant, one should acquire the best tent one can afford which suits one’s needs; not the tent that is the most expensive or contains the most bells and whistles. Your tent should match your needs for your family, if you area couple, opt for a smaller hiking type tent.

Experienced camping enthusiasts also recommend a tent that is not too large for the amount of people sleeping in it, especially if the climate is a bit cool.  This is because a large tent with too few people in it will always feel cold and will never warm up.  The best tent should contain adequate space for people and gear.

Campers should by all means get the correct tent for their needs in order to make the most of a camping holiday.  Nobody likes to struggle with too much stuff or too much tent; time is much better spent having fun!