The Dyrt campers pitched their tents all over the country this year, then reported back to share campground reviews and photos. And they learned A LOT about camping along the way.

Whether you’re a seasoned camper or just getting started, we’re all making mistakes and improving our game as we go. (Raise your hand if you STILL trip over a guy line whenever the sun goes down…✋Just me? Nevermind.)

One of our favorite things about The Dyrt community — the fastest growing online community of campers — is that we all get to benefit from the mistakes and experiences of each other. (Use your headlamp and watch your step! You’re welcome.)

The Dyrt Campers Share Wisdom From the Field

We recently asked our community of campers to share the lessons they learned while camping this summer. Here’s the priceless wisdom they had to offer…

Yovimpa Pass Campground in Utah, Photo from Jason R.

1. “When last minute camping, like deciding and leaving within two hours, you still need to look at your list. You will forget even the most basic things, like matches…and plates.” — Kim C.

2. “Stop spending so much time preparing. Bring less, enjoy nature more, and cleanup will be easier when you get home!” — Richard M.

3. “Nothing ever goes entirely according to plan, so be flexible and have backups.” — Sarah C.

4. “Weather doesn’t make or break a trip, your mind does.” — Steph H.

5. “Camping reminds us that the chaos of everyday life is so unimportant compared to what the wilds of the world has to offer.” — Kim C.

6. “I took six trips this spring/summer and it rained every damn time. Each time we were better prepared and cared less. My take away by the last two trips was to just enjoy nature as it comes — but always bring rain gear.” — Natty K.

7. “Always take extra batteries and matches.” — Jim T.

8. “Let people know where you’ll be and when you’ll return; many places I camped didn’t have cell reception. If something went wrong, I could have been in a lot of trouble.” — William K.

9. “Always book way in advance for Rocky Mountain National Park camping.” — Cassie S.

Longs Peak Campground in Rocky Mountain National Park, Image from Kelly Z.

10. “Bring an extra case of bottled water!” — Robin W.

11. “Don’t camp next to a river in bear country.” — Mary K.

12. “When snow is possible, Reflectix in your windows in a must.” — Nicole L.

Fourth Iron Campground in New Hampshire, Image from Daniel S.

13. “Always touch firewood with a bare hand before purchasing. I made the mistake of getting two soggy bundles and realized it too late.” Natty K.

14. “Camp slippers!” — Sarah S.

15. “Never underestimate how cold the mountains can get in fall.” — Cassie S.

Detroit Lake State Park campground in Oregon, Image from Chanel C.

16. “Know your environment and its predators and how to react. Grand Tetons….always carry bear spray !!” — Bill K.

17. “I learned that in some places, like the Michigan Upper Peninsula, a little screen house will SAVE THE DAY because bugs can be so bad!” — Deni S.

18. “Putting a pup tent inside a cabin tent means it won’t be as drafty and you’ll stay warmer.” — Al S.

Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park campground in California, Image from Lauren L.

19. “Standing dead trees make the best firewood even (especially) if it has been raining. Saved my ass from being cold and wet more than once.” — David N.

20. “If the percentage of rain is over 10. . . bring a tarp for over the tent!” — Joshua M.

Are you new around here? Welcome! We hope you’ll continue to visit for more camping advice and inspiration. And don’t forget to pull up a chair at The Facebook Campfire for more shared wisdom from campers like you. 


Britany Robinson

Britany Robinson

Britany is the Managing Editor of The Dyrt, and a lifelong writer with bylines in BBC Travel, The Guardian, Lonely Planet, and more. When she's not at her computer, she's (hopefully) outside, hiking or camping with her dog. Oh and she definitely ate all of the chocolate out of the trail mix you're sharing.