Find or Create Shelter Before Dark
One of the most important camping tips is this: Always pitch camp before dark. You'll need to decide on a type of camp housing that suits your fancy, whether that's a tent, recreational vehicle (RV) or a cabin. Some adventurers go primitive and literally sleep under the stars in a hammock. If that's too bare-bones for you, then you may consider packing a tent for your outdoor adventure. Although they're probably the most basic shelters for camping, tents can be rather comfortable with the proper preparation. Ask the salesperson at the outdoor recreation store to recommend a suitable tent for your needs. These needs will determine the size, shape and quality of the tent you select. Keep in mind that with tents, bigger isn't necessarily better -- you'll have to lug it to your campsite, after all. Be sure to try your tent out at home to detect any problems so your camping trip doesn't turn into a nightmare. Bring extra tent poles just in case yours break; that's not unheard of. Keep a window or two slightly unzipped at night to reduce moisture inside the tent. Also, pack an old shower curtain (one that's slightly smaller than the size of your tent floor) to place on the ground to keep you dry in case it rains.
Roll on over to sleeping bag camping tips in the next section.