When planning for an upcoming trek or hike, a lot of things should be considered, such as a backpack, food, and weather. But how about the camping spot?
As the sun starts to set, one of the biggest responsibilities of a camper is to find a perfect spot to rest. It’s never a good idea to just dump all the stuff in the first place being spotted.
If I do not take finding a good camping spot seriously, then I may end up waking up in the morning under a canopy of condensation or a dead falling branch in my tent.
Choosing a suitable campsite is considered one of the integral parts of the camping routine, but also a daunting task.
Whether a camper is seasoned or a first-timer, it is best to know what the tricks in finding a good and safe camping spot are. I hope the ideas below will help you on your next camping activity:
What Factors are Important in Choosing a Campsite?
1. Go for Flat Ground
The best way to ensure that you will get a comfortable good night’s sleep is by pitching my camping tent on the flat ground. There are some instances when nature will not favor me, so I end up on a slope.
However, I make sure that I will have a comfortable sleep by positioning my head at the top of the slope. In avoiding paddles during a rainy night, picking a ground with a slight incline is a good choice.
1. Examine the Surface
It’s not enough that the ground is flat, the surface should also be checked. Stones, rubble, branches, roots, or rocks are some of the elements that usually make my sleep uncomfortable.
Before settling on a certain area, I check if it is possible to clear it. If it is not, I look for another. To save from hassle, I go for a spot that is free from debris.
3. Beware of Trees
Many campers who went to South Pacific or in tropical countries experienced an unexpected threat, which is the falling coconuts. Apart from a painful wake-up call, coconut can also wreck the tent or worse get an injury.
I understand that trees can protect me against the wind, but tall trees can also be a cause of unwanted scenarios. In case I am not very familiar with the location, I make sure I am aware of the trees surrounding the spot I found.
If I want to protect myself against lightning, I go to a low area with dense and similar in height trees and is away from water. During my last winter camping, I avoid an area under trees with snow on their branches.
4. Look for Windbreaks or Shelter
I feel lucky if I spotted an area with a natural windbreak. It helps a lot when putting up my tent. Small crops of trees, rock outcroppings, large boulders, fences, or hedges offer effective protection against the wind. I avoid spots with potential rock slides.
5. Never Choose A Compacted Ground
Just because others are camping in a particular spot, it is also good for everyone. When people keep camping on the same campsite, the ground will get compacted. As a result, it would be dangerous for campers during heavy rains.
When the compacted ground is filled up with water, the campsite will suddenly get swamped. So, I never pitch in my tend in this overused area.
6. Think About the Sun
For those who like thawing out in the tent when the morning sets and wish the sun to warm them up, pitching up the tent in a spot facing south is a nice idea.
Since I personally like spending in my tent during the day, I look for a spot with some shade. It’s discouraging to stay inside the tent during the hottest part of the day; it feels like I’m in a sauna.
7. Consider the Water Supply
Practicing low-impact camping will not hurt anyone. By pitching my tent at least 200 ft from the water supply, rest assured that I will have a convenient camping experience. I also make sure that the source of water is free from contamination,
In every camping activity that I join, safe and easy access to water is important. So, I make sure that I will not pitch too far away from it. Besides, it is also not a good idea to camp in an area that is too close to the water supply due to high traffic.
8. Be Attentive to Environmental Hazards
Make sure that the campsite is safe from avalanches, high tide, flash floods, or rock falls. Always remember that natural windbreaks can be either useful or dangerous.
The best thing I can do about it is to be aware of the local environment. I stay away from a campsite which I think is not safe to stay.
9. Distance of the Toilet
I noticed that the wash blocks are among the busiest areas. Since I don’t want other people to walk through my tent all night, I make sure a fair distance away. Well, I just need to prepare myself for a long, cold walk in the during if I need to go to the toilet.
The Places to Avoid as Camp Spots
Choosing a good campsite is one of the best ways for you to have peace of mind and become safe and comfortable throughout the activity. It’s a nice idea to go to a place that is well-drained, sheltered, relatively even and flat, and breezy.
Meanwhile, you need to avoid the following places:
- Gullies and depressions
- Exposed ridges
- Lone trees
- Fragile vegetation
- Next to water sources
- Valley Floors