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Things to Bring When Camping and Backpacking

Essential Backpacking Gear and Supplies Plus Optional Extras

Whether you are an experienced backer or a novice, having essential gear and supplies with you is essential. If you are accustomed to trekking and camping on different types of terrain, you most likely have well-used checklists. You know what styles and weights of clothing to pack. You know what hiking, camping and running shoes to take along.

Yet if you are new to the exciting adventure of backpacking, gear checklists from the pros are vital necessities. It is difficult to know what to take hiking. By following advice from these experts, you can have all the essentials and many optional items neatly stowed in your backpack. When you pack in an organized, sensible way, you can more easily relax and enjoy the thrilling experience of each new trekking excursion. 

Packing the Essential Gear for a Safe, Enjoyable Backpacking Adventure

Whether you are about to embark on your very first backpacking adventure or the next one of many, pack savvy and smart. Find out ahead of time what to take hiking. Discover the best of Things to Bring When Camping and Backpacking. Be sure to include your favorite brands of the following items to make this trek the best one yet: 


1. Backpacks

B074D3G6SJ - Deuter Aircontact Lite 50+10 Backpack
  • Extra Lightweight (for short excursions).

Deuter Aircontact Lite 50+10: This extra-light backpack is versatile and easy to carry. For day treks or one to three days and nights on the trail, this easy-to-organize pack is an ideal choice.

Osprey Daylite Plus Daypack: This backpack is ulta-light and comfortable to carry on the trail. It offers high degrees of durability, even in harsh weather conditions. 

  • Regular Weight (for longer-term trips)

Gregory Mountain Products Stout 75 Liter Men’s Backpack: This convenient backpack design is sturdy enough to outlast many long hiking and camping trips. It front loading “stuff pocket” offers easy access to snacks and other trekking essentials. This is an ideal item for your packing list for backpacking.

TETON Sports Scout 3400 Internal Frame Backpack: This rugged pack is surprisingly comfortable to carry, even on long or rough trails. You can pack virtually everything you need and more in this spacious backpack.   

  • Backpack Cover

Many backpack brands and designs today come with their own rain covers. However, if your favorite pack style is not sold with a cover, the following brands and designs are popular selections for your list of essentials for camping: 

Frelaxy Hi-Visibility Backpack Rain Cover with Reflective Strip 100% Waterproof Ultralight Backpack Cover: This backpack cover offers a Storage Pouch and Anti-Slip Cross Buckle Strap for hiking, camping, biking and traveling.   

 ZM-SPORTS 15-90L Backpack Rain Cover with Reflective Strip: This backpack cover design offers Vertical Adjustable Fixed Strap for avoiding falls along with a storage pack. This is a major item for your packing list for backpacking. Put this item on your list of essentials for camping. 

2. Sleep Gear

B01D1O9RIC - Hyke & Byke Shavano 32 Degree F 650 Fill Power Hydrophobic Down Sleeping Bag
  • Sleeping Bags (and Quilt, if needed)

Kelty Tuck 22F Degree Mummy Sleeping Bag – 3 Season Ultralight Sleeping Bag: This sleeping bag offers a Thermal Pocket Hood and a Zippered Opening in the Footbox. As a lightweight camping and traveling backpack, it is often used with a tent or hammock camping seep setup. A Stuff Sack is included. This is important for your packing list for backpacking.  

Hyke & Byke Shavano 32 Degree F 650 Fill Power Hydrophobic Down Sleeping Bag with ClusterLoft Base – This super-lightweight men’s and women’s Mummy Bag is designed for summer backpacking adventures. You can order extra duck down insulation, if you like, for colder weather trekking and camping. This is a must for your list of hiking gear.

  • Sleeping Pads

ECOTEK Outdoors Insulated Hybern8 4 Season Ultralight Inflatable Sleeping Pad: This model has Contoured FlexCell Design and provides easy, comfortable sleeping. It lightweight, durable, and hammock approved. This sleeping pad received a sub-zero temperature rating.   

Sierra Designs Sleeping Pad, 3″ Thick Air Pad Mattress for Backpacking & Camping: This sleeping pad includes a one-way valve for fast, easy inflation. It raises comfort to the ultimate levels. This is an essential item for your list of hiking gear.  

3. Shelter

B004SKCKY2 - ALPS Mountaineering Meramac 4-person Tent
  • Tents

Nemo Hornet Elite Ultralight Backpacking Tent, 2 Person:  This tent offers an Ultra-fine 7D Nylon Ripstop fly with a silicone water repellent. It is extra-lightweight and has large doors and vestibules to ensure greater wet weather coverage. Put this item on your list of essentials for camping.  

Kelty Late Start Backpacking Tent – 2 Person: This popular 2019 model backpacking and camping tent has a sturdy floor and body composed of waterproof 68 denier rainfly fabric. It can withstand wet weather conditions and dry out quickly. This is an important item for your list of backpacking gear.


1. Cap or Hiking Hat

Fishing & Hiking Boonie Sun Hat for Men & Women – This backpacking/camping hat provides good protection from overhead sun and UV (UPF 50+) protection. This Wide Brim Bucket Hat is durable with a pleasing safari style.

2. Long-lasting Sunscreen

Panama Jack Sport Sunscreen Lotion – SPF 50, Broad Spectrum UVA/UVB Protection: This powerful sunscreen is non-greasy, reef-friendly, and PABA, paraben, gluten & cruelty free. It offers water resistance of up to 80 Minutes. (3 Fl. Oz.)   

3. Light Jacket or Long-sleeve Shirt (for Sun Protection in Warm or Tropical Climates)

Lefthigh Men Women Lightweight Jacket Waterproof Windbreaker. This lightweight jacket is durable and comfortable outerwear for backpacking, hiking or cycling. It is waterproof and dries quickly after being worn in wet weather. This item should be on your list of backpacking gear.  

4. First-Aid Kit

2-in-1 First Aid Kit: This Mini Camping Outdoor Hiking Survival Emergency Medicine First Aid Kit bag or pouch includes everything you need for treating and patching cuts, scrapes, burns, abrasions and more while on the trail or at the camp site. Bag Pouch. This is among the essential things to bring for camping.


B0799MQM4K - Bulin 13-piece Backpacking Cookware Set

1. Camping Stove

Vulcanus Mini Butane Gas Camping Stove: This convenient portable stove for cooking foods while backpacking and camping is extremely compact. The central burner provides a double flame, and the wind screen makes cooking perfectly safe, even in windy weather.   

2. Cooking Pots, Pans, Utensils

Bulin 13-piece Backpacking Cookware Set: This 13-piece camping cookware mess kit is made of safe, non-toxic aluminum with non-stick coating for easy cleaning. Hard-anodized aluminum provides fast heating, high temperature resistant, corrosion-resistant, built to last. Heat-resistant handles to keep your fingers safe from the heat.Secure and anti-scald.Perfect for camping, hiking, backpacking, picnic, etc.


1. Drinking Mug

ME.FAN Silicone Collapsible Travel Cup – This collapsible travel cup is made of food grades silicone, topped with a stainless steel rim and plastic lid. Easy to wash, odorless, non-staining, durable, flexible & reusable.

2. Eating Utensils: Knife, Fork, Spoon (or Spork)  

B07BCFC9ZQ - Kershaw Ration Multi Tool Spork

Kershaw Ration Multi Tool Spork: Perfect combination eating implement for backpacking and camping excursions. Made of stainless steel, this spoon and fork combination is lightweight and easy to pack and to clean after meals. It also serves as a bottle opener.   


1. Energy Drinks, Bottled Drinking Water and Snacks

Sambazon, Energy Drink Single Organic, 12 Fl Oz: This energizing vegan drink contains the benefits of the acai berry and the caffeine of 2 shots of espresso. It is Non-GMO, gluten-free, vegan and USDA certified organic.

2. Backpacking Food

Backpacker’s Pantry Cuban Coconut Rice & Black Beans: Each 7.8 ounce pouch contains freeze dried and dehydrated food which is made of premium freeze dried meats and produce. High in Protein and Non GMO, Vegetarian, Vegan and Gluten Free


1.Smartphone or Watch with GPS App (for driving to backpacking trails, camping site)

Garmin Vívoactive 3, GPS Smartwatch: This product comes with Contactless Payments and Built-In Sports Apps as well as black with silver hardware.   


1. Headlamp

B07Q3K9WMV - IKAAMA 6000 Lumens 18650 USB Rechargeable Headlamp

IKAAMA 6000 Lumens USB Rechargeable Headlamp: This LED Work Headlight-Flashlight is waterproof and usable in all types of weather when backpacking and camping.   


1. Water Filter / Purifying Aid

Seychelle Extreme Water Filter Bottle: Ideal for Camping, Travel, Hiking, Backpacking, Survival and Emergency – Removes Bacteria, Viruses, Radiological Contaminants. Among the essential Things to bring camping (28 oz).   


1. Appropriate Clothes for Warm or Cold Weather (as needed)

  • Rain Jacket

Rain Poncho Jacket Coat Hooded for Adults with Pockets: Lightweight, easy to pack and keeps you dry even in a downpour.   

  • Hiking Boots

Merrell Men’s Moab 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot: Protects angles and feet when trekking over rough terrain. Comfortable for long treks.   


1. Trekking Poles 

B07KXZJG9L - Black Diamond Trail Pro Shock Trekking Poles

Black Diamond Trail Pro Shock Trekking Poles: Designed with rubber grip and solution strap for added safety while trekking. These are among the essentials of things to bring for camping.   

Checklist Download

Thank you for checking out this list of things to bring when camping and backpacking. We created a downloadable version of a checklist for our tribe. If you would like to get your free copy of the comprehensive checklist, you can download the Adobe PDF version here.

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