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Dos and don’ts of camping

Camping is a fun and inexpensive way to travel. If you are short for cash, but also long to spend a night or two away from your regularly scheduled programme then camping is your best bet.
However, if you’ve never before stepped in to the wilderness, here are a few simple dos and don’ts that could help you get started.

Organise your camping gear
This is usually the biggest roadblock many beginners face, when first thinking about going camping. Proper camping gear is essential but it’s not complicated as you may think.
Make a checklist of all the things you may need – a backpack, water bottle, something to sleep on (a bed sheet/mat/bag), torch, lighter or match sticks, dry food, basic first aid kit, and of course a tent.
If you don’t own a tent, there are plenty of places where you can rent one for a reasonable price.
We recommend – www.tentmaster.lk
Contact: 0778 622 002
A four person single layer tent cost – Rs.500 per day

Check weather ahead of time
Read weather reports and projections leading up to the big day. While you can’t entirely depend on weather reports, if you keep an eye out, you can predict your own pattern easily enough.

Manage your waste
Have a plan of how you are to deal with your waste. Please carry some garbage bags with you to carry back all of your non-biodegradable waste.

Tread lightly
If you look in the right place, you will be able to find a spot where either other people have camped or a place where you need not cut down natural vegetation to create your space. Practice sustainable camping to support your ecosystem, if not you won’t be camping for very long.

Don’t assume you are Bear Grylls
If you are not a former SAS serviceman, survival instructor, or an honorary lieutenant-colonel then do not expose yourself to unnecessarily harsh conditions.
Do not attempt to eat the vegetation that grows naturally in your camping site, simply stick to what you’ve brought with you, there’s really no need to cook everything on a campfire, it’s practically quite difficult to do. There are camping stoves available for rent that is lightweight and easy to use.
We recommend – www.tentmaster.lk
Contact: 0778 622 002
A lightweight camping stove cost – Rs.500 per day

Dig deep
You may have assumed that there are no sanitary facilities in the wild. If you are lucky, you may be setting up in a designated camping site and there are a few toilets dug up for your convenience. If not, you are going to have to do your business much like they used to, pre-plumbing.
If you are near a natural body of water, do not do your business near the water, it’s likely that that is your only source of water to clean up after and you don’t want to contaminate it.
Simply find a buddy and take a trip a little further away from your campsite and dig deep. Toilet paper and wet wipes are your friend, but remember not to discard them randomly in the wild as they do not degrade as comfortably as you may assume, so seal that tight and pack it away.

Don’t leave your campfire unattended
You don’t want your camping story to be the next wildfire survival movie that people watch and go: “those guys were total idiots”.
Do not go to sleep until you are certain all the ambers have been put out, and pro tip: while it is aesthetically pleasing to pitch your tents nicely circling the campfire, don’t do it. A half-moon shape is okay, but its preferred to set up tents a distance away from the fire in case any stray sparks choose to make their way over to any flammables you may have lying around.
And, most importantly, DO have the right attitude! Speak to a few experienced campers and the technicalities will be sorted out quite easily, but nothing will feel right if you don’t have the right mentality. If you are prepared to brave fairly tough conditions, tough only because you are not used to it, then you are sure to get hooked.

By Dimithri Wijesinghe