Thursday, July 28, 2011

How We Pack for Camping

We have a minivan.

When we camp, we tent camp.

When we camp, we have a lot of stuff.

When we camp for an entire week, there's even more stuff.

Which means you have to be very precise and organized as to how you pack your car.

My father in law has never seen how loaded down we are when we go camping, so I took these step by step pictures to share how it is that we pack our car.

We start by removing the last seat in our van, and switching it with the middle seat. The back seat actually allows for better positioning and adjusting than the middle seat. The spare seat is placed in our dinning room for the week. Then we load our camp box and large ice chest. They must be placed on the sides. Now is also the time to pack the boogie boards and large flexible freesbie against the seat. Our EZ Up and double camp chairs and umbrella go in next, in between the ice chest and camp box. The single camp chairs for the girls are then positioned onto the ledges of the back windows. Our small camp table is also slid in alongside of the ice chest. Next to pack are the rubbermaid boxes. Usually two are filled with non perishable food, especially if going for a week. One box has our air mattresses and tarps. The other box is a one filled with other camping necessities - hammer, mallet, air pumps, lanterns, etc. More stuff is also strategically positioned along the sides of the cars in the window spaces. Next comes the beach chairs and blankets and bedding. Chairs laying flat atop the ice chest, blankets being stuffed into every nook and cranny that could possible hold something. The girls luggage and beach bags of beach towels are backed and our tent is packed at this point. One of the last things to be packed into the car so that it can be easily accessed and set up so everything else can be loaded into it. LOL. The only thing missing from this picture is the large duffel bag that Steven and I pack our clothes for a week in. It gets shoved in last minute along with our pillows. The one picture I failed to get was the front of the car. This trip, there was an ice chest between the girls, sitting on the seat with our electric coffee pot in it, bike helmets and scooters fit in the nooks beneath the seat, bucket of sand toys beneath Rachel's feet. As well as stuff between mine and Steven's seat. We were loaded!!!

And as if the inside of the car wasn't fully loaded, we have a bike rack that straps to the back of our car. Normally there are only three bikes, but this year I had a bike, therefore Rachel's was strapped to the roof. In this picture, Rachel was upset and crying because she feared her bike would come off in the drive to the campground. LOL. Daddy assured her if it did, he'd buy her a new one...after the tent was put up. LOL. At the end of our camping trip, and we're loading up the car to come home, everything pretty much has to be packed the same way! There's no way if we want to continue camping that we could ever get a smaller car. LOL.

2 comments:

Letti said...

We just went camping for two days and I was amazed how much we had to pack. With the size of my family we would have to rent a uhaul if we went for a week. That was a fun post!

Kim said...

That's pretty much exactly what our van looks like minus the beach gear and adding fishing gear. It is very, uh, snug. :) It always reminds me why we put Ryan in the back seat and Abby in the middle though...it keeps the "Stop touching me" stuff to a minimum!