I know it’s getting a little bit late in the season for camping but I’ve gotta believe there are still a few die-hards out there still keeping warm by the campfire.
A while back I got an email from “Tabo” who saw my Minimalist Car Camping Checklist. He had a few great suggestions and pointers that I wanted to share, especially regarding flying and car camping with a rental car. Read on for more… thanks, Tabo!
It looks like the “minimal list” involves renting a car after flying; so you need to take into consideration that you can’t fly with some items. You can’t pack a lighter into your checked baggage, you can’t pack a big kitchen knife on carry-on.
The pocket rocket is fine, but remember you can’t fly with fuel canisters. Some airlines will let you travel with empty fuel bottles for liquid fuel stoves, but only if they’ve been thoroughly cleaned. Some airlines will just confiscate the fuel bottles. Some might even take the stove. Be prepared! We always bring two stoves, the pocket rocket and a jetboil, they compliment each other well.
After you pick up the car, you need to find a camping supply store. Get a list of a couple of stores, call them up to ensure they have what you need and most importantly, that they will be open at some point before you leave town.
For the headlamp, check the battery. You can find AA and AAA batteries anywhere, but if it uses a button type like the Petzl e-lite or a 6v like the BD Ion, make sure you bring extras since you don’t know if you’ll find them easily.
Speaking of backup, remember that airlines like to lose that one item you really need. You don’t want to cancel your trip if the airline does misplace your bag, so plan on some contingencies. Have a list of “what ifs”, like what if they lose the pack that has the tent and sleeping bag? With that in mind, don’t put all your eggs in one basket! Carry on essentials that can’t be/are costly to replace.
Oh yeah, like any camping, some para-cord and some duct tape, they always come in handy.