Help, I Never Camped Before!

The main thing you should expect to experience when entering the wilderness for the first time is a huge boost of self-confidence! You’ll amaze yourself at how creative you can be to make things comfortable for yourself with only a few supplies. And believe me, you will definitely make priceless memories and see spectacular scenery that could never be bought in a vacation catalogue!


Lots of Exercise. Expect lots of physical activity. Paddling. Setting up tents. Hauling gear. Hiking. You will sleep well each night after the day’s activity, and will be amazed how much stronger you are when you return home. Tip: Wear comfy, broken-in shoes that fit you well.

Eat Yummy Food Cooked Over A Fire or Camp Stove. Just imagine everything with a grilled flavor. And add a small potential for burned fingers. My two cents: Cover pots to conserve energy and make your food cook faster. And don’t grab a pot with anything wet. A dry bandana works great as a potholder.

Relieve the Call of Nature in.... Nature. There are no potties along the trail, although some destinations do have port-o-potties at campsites (think: wooden box with a hole cut in the top.) If you’re shy/grossed out by this, do a little research. There’s lots of helpful info online.

Sleep in Tents. No night-sounds CD this time around the block! This is real life! You’ll have a lightweight mini air-mattress (called a Therma-Rest), and your pillow will be your backpack or an extra fleece. Climate control is the zipper on your tent’s ventilation windows. Tip: If you’re a light sleeper, bring ear plugs.

Be With People 24/7. You will make new buddies.... and probably have some conflicts too. But that’s what it’s all about! And the friendships you make through shared challenges will last a lifetime.


Do Your Research! Know the ins and outs of your destination, what the camping regulations are, what kind of weather to expect in the area and how to use your gear. Ask us what information we have available. Our goal is for you to enjoy your trip to the fullest, and our staff would love to answer any questions you may have. There are also loads of helpful YouTube videos and articles online.

Start Small. If it’s your first time camping and you’re nervous, try an overnight trial run in a local area. This will give you a chance to practice using your gear, and think of things you may have overlooked. Or, just take a weekend trip for your first time.

Don’t Over-Pack. Especially on a backpacking trip, keep it simple. You may think you need that 3rd jacket when you’re packing... but you’ll probably change your mind when sweating your way up the mountain under a behemoth pack. Ask us about sample gear lists, which can be very helpful in tailoring your packing list.

Go For It. Once you’ve set out on your adventure, just go for it! Accept challenges that come up head-on, and be cool with changes in plans. That’s the beauty of the wilderness... you never know what’s around the next bend. One thing’s for sure, you will make memories that will stay with you and your partners in adventure for the rest of your lives.