September 2, 2020
In light of the global coronavirus pandemic, people aren’t traveling. As such, more and more are planning getaways in the great outdoors. Either way, fall is a very popular time for people to go camping. Like everything else right now, though, it’s important to stay safe. Here are some safety tips for camping trips in the age of COVID-19.
Keep Your Distance
Across the country, we’re still being encouraged to stay home when we can. When we’re out in public, though, we’re expected to maintain social distancing measures. That means that we should avoid coming within six feet of others—even when we’re outside.
Because we’re not doing traditional travel, campgrounds might be more crowded than usual. As such, you want to try to find locations that allow you to spread out. If you’re trying to escape the madness, the last thing you want is to be in close proximity with strangers.
Pandemic Camping Packing List
Whenever you go camping, you want to be prepared. That typically involves packing a tent, sleeping bags, a cooler, cooking equipment, flashlights, etc. Your trunk may look a little different as you leave for your adventure in 2020. Here are some things to pack:
- Hand soap
- Hand sanitizer
- First Aid Kit
- Portable potty
Hand soap and a first aid kit were probably always on your list, but it could be even more important now. Also, bringing your own portable potty can prevent you from needing to use public facilities which may not be the cleanest.
Remember Food Safety
Camping has already presented challenges when it comes to food. While some might be able to keep it simple with granola bars and pre-packed peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, others enjoy preparing meals over a campfire, portable grill, or camping stove.
If you’re planning to bring perishable items such as milk and meats, be sure that you’re maintaining a safe temperature. You also want to be sure to clean your hands thoroughly before handling food, whether you’re cooking or eating.
Check The Numbers
It’s pretty normal to check the weather before a camping trip. After all, who wants to get stuck in a storm or other inclement conditions? You also should check the roads to make sure that your route isn’t impacted by closures or construction.
While you’re at it, take a few minutes to check the number of COVID-19 cases at your destination. Sure, it might seem like overkill, but if cases are surging or there’s an outbreak, you’ll be able to make an informed decision about whether to proceed or find a different location.
This is important anytime, but it’s even more essential right now. Choose a contact person on the outside world and give them regular updates while you’re camping. You could become ill or injured or even deal with some unsavory folks out in the woods.
Staying in touch with someone who’s at home can be an essential lifeline in the unlikely event that something goes wrong. Tell them where you’re going and keep them in the loop if you change location. It’s better safe than sorry.
At the end of the day, while we have to do what we feel necessary to stay physically safe, we also need to take care of our mental health. Spending some time out in nature can be the reprieve you need, especially if you’ve been staying at home. When we keep ourselves strong, we make it easier for us all to come together to get through this!