Yes, these days you can download some extensive camping checklists, but somehow I always still manage to forget a few items. These items are all non essential for camping, but they do come in handy!
This might be a an odd item for some of you, but having a table cloth to cover a dull cement table helps refine the picnic experience for me. I usually pack two tablecloths, one for the table at camp and one I put in my bag for when we stop at picnic spots to make breakfast after our morning drives.
Packing up camp is never fun, but it is less fun if you have to get rid of the excess dirt inside your tent with your bare hands. It is inevitable that your tent will get dirty, and we don’t always have space to pack a broom, so I now always make a point to pack a dustpan.
I always plan meals before any trip, but never think about what do to with the leftovers. I have learnt that even though you don’t have any leftovers you will still find a use for Tupperware. It keeps everything organized, ingredients fresh and things dry.
You will be surprised how many meals you eat with your hands while camping. Think about it – choppies (lamb chops), hot dogs, chips, fruit and breakfast rolls. It’s guaranteed that you will need serviettes at least once a day during your trip.
Camera Bean Bag
Taking the perfect picture early in the morning or late afternoon can be a challenge. This is the time of day when the light is most appealing but requires a slower shutter speed, which if you don’t have a steady hand will more than often deliver a blurry photo. A bean bag provides you that extra support and stability that you need to take the perfect photo. You won’t need this item every day, but when you spot a pack of wild dogs next to the road as the sun is just about to set, you will be glad you packed it.
I am not a big swimmer which is why it’s not at the top of my list of things to pack, but days in the Kruger can get hot, very hot. To combat the heat you can either go sit in your car with the aircon on full blast, take a cool shower or cool off in one of the swimming pools. Most camps have swimming pools and it’s a great way to relax and get some Vitamin D.
I believe it is perfectly save in the Kruger, but sometimes even if it’s just to keep the monkeys out, we lock our tent. It’s for cases when you just quickly want to jump in your car and drive to the shop without packing up all your camera equipment.
On our last trip to the Kruger we actually remembered to pack a hammock and what a blessing it was. Usually when I want to take a power nap in the afternoon it’s just too hot in our tent. A hammock is ideal for an afternoon nap in the shade, and yes you won’t always have trees to tie it to, but from now on I will always pack one just in case.
Six Egg Container
We eat a lot of eggs so when we go camping we usually buy 48 eggs and load the entire pack. On days when we want to make breakfast at one of the picnic spots, we will pack a picnic basket and this is typically when we realize that we forgot to pack the 6 egg container to transport the eggs. Instead we have to load the full 48 eggs in the car. A simple item, but one we always seem to forget.
The majority of braais in the Kruger are stand alone with a built in grill. When the fire is already lit, the braai (welding) gloves comes in handy for adjusting the height of the grill.