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Camping - planning

You are considering to go on a camping trip? Have you already decided that you want to, but you don't know where to start? Maybe this can help you with the things that you have to do before.


First of all you should always chose a destination. Usually you will make a list of places that fulfil your criteria for the landscape in the beginning. For example a forest, a mountain, a lake, or simply a campsite. Don't be afraid to search a large area for this. Depending on your mobility you could easily go for an area with a diameter of several hundred kilometres. After that you will start to go more and more into detail. Do you want to be close to civilisation or not? Do you want easy access to a certain infrastructure or area? Do you want flat, hilly, or mountainous terrain? And so on. Feel free to include all your personal criteria in this step. It's okay to spend several days looking for the perfect place.


The next step will be choosing a time and duration for the trip. Depending on the area there can be a lot of different factors involved. Typical climate, weather forecasts, festivals, natural phenomena, natural catastrophes, seasonal tourism, and so on. To give you a few examples: Is there a lot of rain during this time of the year? During what time are the most wildfires, floods, hurricanes or tornadoes? When will the casual tourists overrun the area?


You are rather flexible when camping and it usually doesn't make a big difference if you shorten or lengthen your holiday by a day or two. You should have a vague idea, though. Going on a trip over the weekend is completely different from going on a trip for half a month. In what ways this will affect you will also be covered in future blog entries.


This depends on what kind of camping enthusiast you are. Are you that kind of person who takes a backpack full of stuff and goes into the wilderness, or are you the one who fills their entire car with equipment and drives to a campsite? You will have a very hard time getting a literal ton of equipment into a remote valley. So you might considering taking only the most essential parts with you and neglecting the luxuries of life. You might also not be able to store water and food for more than a few days. So you might think about where you can stock up on it again.


Unfortunately, unforeseen events can happen. There is an emergency and you need to get somewhere else asap. Somebody got injured or ill and needs professional medical care. You have an unpleasant encounter with the wildlife. You rely on periodic supply of medicine (diabetes, coronary diseases, etc). Those are the things where you better have 10 back-up plans. That's why you should check for alternative routes, hospitals, safe-holds, or simply the coverage of signal for your mobile phone. If you travel to a foreign country you should also always get a dictionary in order to communicate with the locals. As always, better safe than sorry!

--- Katie
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