Slow camping and dealing with doubters

Slow camping and dealing with doubters - Episode 147 of The Slow Home Podcast

It’s that time of the month again! Where Ben and I sit down and answer some of your questions about all things slow living, and try to keep the stupid jokes to a minimum. (In today’s episode I think we succeed in at least one of those areas).

I don’t know why I’m always so surprised at the wonderful questions we’re asked every month, but I always am. I learn so much from these episodes, and they give Ben and I an opportunity to talk about things that we honestly wouldn’t sit down and chat about otherwise.

This month we open up by answering a question from Sharni about camping, which is super fun and timely as we’re currently waiting for the soaking wet Sydney March to end so we can spend some time in the national park down south.

Sharni asked specifically for a list of the bare essentials when it comes to camping so I thought it best to put that together here. Keep in mind, much of this can be borrowed rather than bought (particularly if you’re just starting out with your camping adventures and aren’t sure of your style yet) and it’s definitely worthwhile taking a few exploratory trips before committing to one kind of set up.

I love that camping requires us to be intentional in everything we pack, and the realisation I always have about how very little we need in order to have an amazing time.

So here’s a list of items we always take with us (based on the fact that we don’t hike in, but rather camp near our car and usually stay a few days) but I’d love to know yours too – feel free to leave a comment sharing your must-haves or leave-at-homes:

  • something to sleep in and all necessary pegs, ropes, poles (tent, swag or similar)
  • hammer
  • something to sleep on (blow-up mattress, bunk style bed, foam mattress)
  • something to sleep in (sleeping bags are best but if it’s warm or you’re backyard camping, a sheet or blanket would be fine)
  • basic clothes and shoes that are OK to get (potentially very) dirty
  • folding table
  • folding camp chairs 
  • light (torch, gas lamp)
  • Esky and ice
  • firewood and hatchet
  • something to cook on (if your campground doesn’t have wood fired BBQs then just a simple gas stove or a camp oven)
  • pack of cards
  • large water carrier
  • drink bottles
  • Aeropress and KeepCups (coffee is non-negotiable)
  • hats
  • tennis ball/cricket set/soccer ball/frisbee
  • solar shower if going for longer than a few days, or if campground has no facilities
  • toilet paper
  • shovel

We also have a box in the shed that contains the smaller basics and is always packed, which makes packing so much easier as we know the essentials are ready to go. It includes:

  • camping plates, bowls and mugs
  • cutlery
  • washing up bucket
  • dishwashing liquid
  • dustpan and brush
  • matches
  • rechargeable torch
  • knife
  • chopping board
  • saucepan
  • frying pan
  • tongs
  • large bowl
  • wash cloths
  • tea towels
  • a few clothes pegs
  • length of rope
  • suncream
  • insect repellent

We keep it as simple as possible, and I’m sure there are ample ways we could improve our set-up, but I love the idea of making do with what we have rather than going out and trying to optimise things. Necessity is the mother of invention, apparently!

Aside from camping, we also answer questions about phone use and the arguments it can cause, as well as how to deal with the guilt that arises from even necessary purchases, learning to adopt ‘holiday slow’ in to daily life, and what to do when people aren’t down with the changes you’re making in life.

It’s another good’un and I hope you enjoy it!

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3 Responses to Slow camping and dealing with doubters

  1. Hey guys….I’m a wee bit behind with my podcast listening and so only just listened to this one and was so chuffed to hear you answer my question on making choices with the purchases we make. It was really useful information and spot on. Finally have to purchase some new jeans (begrudgingly as mine are wearing through in rather embarrassing places from cycling to work ☺). I am definitely going to cut myself some slack as know I’ll never find the perfect product to tick all the boxes. Thanks again guys. Love the podcast.

  2. Aw, this was a very nice post. In thought I would like to put in writing like this additionally – taking time and actual effort to make a very good article… however what can I say… I procrastinate alot and on no account appear to get one thing done.

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