June is National Camping Month! Are you already planning your overnight adventure to celebrate? You don’t have to be a wilderness expert to partake in the fun. We’ve got the where, why, how, and more, so round up your friends and family and get ready for the camping adventure you’ve been waiting for.
Why to go camping:
No matter your age, it’s great to take time to unplug and kick back with nature. According to BSA’s market intelligence manager Scott Olson, camping encourages an active lifestyle, which results in big-time benefits such as:
- Improved physical health
- Contributing factors: clean air and water, greater physical fitness, sunlight, and natural food
- Greater mental health
- Contributing factors: socialization, more sleep, solving problems, discovery, minding nature
Find more reasons to go camping along with the numbers to back up Scott’s research in the original Ask the Expert blog post.
Where to go:
If it isn’t already an annual tradition, 2016 is the perfect year to start observing National Camping Month because it also happens to be the National Park Service’ s 100th anniversary! For campers who like to venture beyond the backyard, what better place to start than a recognized American landscape? From Yosemite to Shenandoah, our national parks are teaming with breathtaking sights and incredible adventures waiting to be discovered.
Ready to set up camp amidst an awe-inspiring scene? Head to NationalParks.org and discover the perfect park for your overnight outing.
What to bring:
When you’re camping, you’ll obviously want to Be Prepared, but you will also want to be comfortable. Create your own wilderness haven with the help of personal or group camping checklists, trip planners, and more from the Boy Scout Handbook’s Campcraft.
Need a quick lesson on packing the basics? You can prepare for whatever your trails bring with the Boy Scout 10 Essentials. Just be sure to leave your campsite ready for the next group of campers by practicing the Leave No Trace principles.
Tip: Speaking of being comfortable, see what Bryan on Scouting had to say about protecting yourself from pesky mosquitos.
What to eat:
Just because you’re out in the wilderness doesn’t mean you can’t eat like a king! Prepare your feast with a tried-and-true foil cooking recipe like:
- Hamburger stew
- Baked salmon
- Apple pie packets
- Baked banana boat
Already a well-seasoned foil cooking chef? Turn your campsite into a pizzeria, or even whip up a cheesecake with these delectable Dutch oven recipes.
The Chief’s take:
By now you know camping is both fun and healthy, but did you know camping can also help develop leadership and responsibility? See what the Chief has to say about the positive impact of outdoor adventure in his Chief’s Corner blog post.
Master the basics:
No matter your level of outdoor expertise, Scouting can prepare you for your backwoods (or backyard) adventures. If you want to learn more skills to master the art of camping, check out the Boy Scout Handbook, 13th Edition to see what it takes to earn the camping merit badge, then head to BeAScout.org.
Are you a camping pro? Share your best camping tips in the comments below!