Now that you've set up your camp, it's time to have some fun. Outdoor activities like canoeing, hiking, fishing, cycling, horseback riding, rafting, kayaking, skiing or rock climbing will round out your camping experience.
But before you set off on an outdoor adventure, make sure that your camp is completely set up before nightfall. The best time to make camp is shortly after you arrive. In case the weather suddenly changes, you'll want to have your sleeping bag unpacked and tent assembled. And be sure to return from your hike or fishing excursion before nightfall so that you're safe and sound before it gets dark.
Many people choose to hike while they camp. For a light hike, take a walk around a park or your campsite. If you're up for more of an adventure, take a lengthier and more rigorous hike on a nearby mountain. Many parks offer trails with differing ranges of difficulty and length. When choosing a hike, consider the difficulty of the trail and its safety. Particularly if you're new to hiking, you should choose a well-maintained trail manned by a staff that monitors safety and security. Hiking offers a great way to survey the wilderness and see more beautiful scenic sites.
Biking is also a good way to get around while you camp. Make sure to verify beforehand whether biking is allowed on the trails near your camp. Many national parks only allow cycling on paved and dirt roads, but some campsites also offer special trails just for bikes.
If your campsite is near water, try a white-water rafting adventure. If you want a more relaxing excursion, opt for canoeing or kayaking on a nearby lake instead -- a great way to explore scenic areas that aren't frequented by traffic or lots of pedestrians. If you camp in the winter months, skiing or snowboarding are also options.
What to do around the campfire at night? Play board games, charades or your guitar. But whatever you do, have fun. After all, camping is the perfect way to set aside the hustle and bustle of modern living to spend quality time with family and friends in a scenic outdoor setting.
For more information on camping and outdoor sports, visit the links on the following page.
Related HowStuffWorks Articles
- How Ultralight Backpacking Works
- How does bug repellent clothing work?
- How Bear Spray Works
- How to Start a Fire Without a Match
- Are humans wired to survive?
- How to Find Water in the Wild
- How to Build a Shelter
- How the Boy Scouts Work
- How the Girl Scouts Work
- How Spelunking Works
- How the Sierra Club Works
- How to Hike
- How to Make and Repair Camping Equipment
- How Ice Climbing Works
- Can you ice climb a waterfall?
- How Climbing Mount Everest Works
- How has Mount Everest tourism affected Nepal?
- How Sherpas Work
- How to Avoid Hypothermia
- How Cave Diving Works
- How Spelunking Works
- How Noodling Works
- How Rock Climbing Works
More Great Links
- "Advice: How to Select the Perfect Tent." Greater Ogden Utah Communities. http://greaterogden.home.att.net/outdoor4.htm
- Berger, Karen. Water Purification: Is It Safe to Drink the Water?" Scouting Magazine. http://www.scoutingmagazine.org/issues/0101/d-outs.html
- "Camping Equipment Lists." Outdoor Places. http://www.outdoorplaces.com/gear/lists/carcamping1.htm
- "Camping Tips." Love the Outdoors. http://www.lovetheoutdoors.com/camping/Tips/Tips_and_Advice.htm
- "Car Camping Tips." Road Trip America. http://www.roadtripamerica.com/tips/carcamping.htm
- Conline, Jennifer. "Glamping: Camping? Yes. Roughing It? Not Quite." New York Times. Sept. 14, 2008. http://travel.nytimes.com/2008/09/14/travel/14green-1.html?scp=2&sq=camping&st=cse
- How To Camping Tips. http://www.howtocampingtips.com/
- Grizzly Bear Outreach Project. "Bear Information: Safety." http://www.bearinfo.org/bearsafetyscript.htm
- "Henry Ford and His Camping Companions." Ford. http://www.ford.com/about-ford/heritage/people/vagabonds/658-vagabonds
- "How to Hook up and Set up the RV." Do It Yourself Projects. http://www.diynetwork.com/diy/ab_trailers/article/0,,DIY_13699_4721126,00.html
- Kids Health: Camping. http://kidshealth.org/parent/firstaid_safe/outdoor/woods.html
- Leave No Trace: Outdoor Ethics. http://www.lnt.org/
- National Confectioners Association. "Candy USA: Marshmallows." http://www.candyusa.org/Candy/marshmallows.asp
- Ryalls, Allan and Robert Lee Petri. "Camping." Brittanica. http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/91358/camping
- "Sleeping Bag Comparison." Slackpacker. http://www.slackpacker.com/sleepingbag.html
- "Tent Buying Guide." Backcountry Experience. http://www.bcexp.com/guide_tents.php
- Zacharias, Patricia. "Henry Ford and Thomas Edison: A Friendship of Giants." Detroit News. August 8, 1996. http://info.detnews.com/redesign/history/story/historytemplate.cfm?id=105