If you want to have the best time possible taking your family on a camping trip, whether it’s for a weekend or a lot longer, where you make your base camp is important. Where you intend to do your camping is a big factor. If you intend to stay at a campground where designated spots are already set up, then it’s only a matter of choosing which spot you like.
Campgrounds and RV Parks
At a campground that has facilities like showers and bathrooms,you might want to set up your camp site near there if you have little kids that will have to be taken to the bathroom frequently. You should get any closer to those facilities than necessary however because there is likely to be other campers coming and going there frequently also.
At a camp ground or an RV park, there might be some spots that are set apart a little more from others. If you want more privacy and less noise, then you should pick one of those spots. If you like to be in the center of things for socializing with other campers, then you can choose a more centralized spot.
If there is a pool or lake for swimming, you might want to set your tent up or park your RV closer to the swimming area. How far you will have to walk to the swimming spot depends on how large the campground is where you are staying.
Camping in the wilderness can be a lot more tricky than enjoying the extra comforts of a campground because there are no electrical hook ups, no running water faucets, and no bathrooms and showers. Most families with small children prefer campgrounds because they do offer these conveniences.
State Parks often have more wilderness camping spots and will have access to those things, but they might be a distance away. If you get really into the wilderness areas, there won’t be any of those conveniences near by. If you set up camp in a state park, make sure you read all of the rules and regulations concerning things like alcohol, firearms, and fires. Reading the rules will help you to stay in compliance with what the state park allows and does not allow.
Choosing Your Spot
If you can set up your base camp near a water source, that is going to make it easier for things like swimming and fishing. If you were not able to bring along much clean water with you, you will need to use your water purification tablets or water filter to make the water source you have clean and fit to drink. You might want to heat water to bathe off in, You will need water for cooking. So camping near water just makes good sense.
You also want to have enough flat ground that is not grown up with bush and grasses to set up your tent or tents. Clear ground is better because in wilderness areas if there is a snake in the camp, you want to be able to spot it easily unless you have a snake proof tent.
If the weather is very hot, then try to place your tent in the shade of a tree to keep it cooler during the day. A tree near your tent can also help shield it somewhat if it comes a hard rain.
Make sure you set your fire ring up a safe distance away from your tent and away from brush and other sources of fuel. Camp fires can be deadly for you, your family and others and could destroy massive areas fast if they get out of control.
When you have a family with you or just friends, make sure everyone is familiar with the area around them and use one specific spot as a bathroom area. The bathroom needs to be far enough away from the campsite that there is no odor, but close enough so no one gets lost. Using a shovel to bury the unmentionable is a good idea.
Whenever anyone leaves camp for any reason, make sure everyone has a whistle with them at all times so that if they do get lost they can signal for help.
Even when families or friend go camping in groups, bad things can happen. Sometimes whole families have disappeared when they go into the wilderness camping. Always make sure that you leave word with family or friends where you are doing and try to camp where you are sure you can get a cell phone signal if possible. A cell phone signal is a safety precaution you don’t want to find yourself without if something goes wrong.