Camping Equipment and Gear
Trekking Backpacking travel
Below are the major categories of my camping equipment and information. Please remember that I am in no way
suggesting that I am an authority in this area. This is only meant to
give reader ideas about my preferences and ideas. Your personal
preferences will probably be different than mine. Please see
Some advice about advice
for more discussion in this area.
Camping Equipment Menu
Buying Camping Equipment
Tent and Ground
Pots and Pans
Stealth or Free Camping
Frugal Bike Tour: How to Save Money and Economiz
How to Prevent Flat Tires
Bike Touring Shorts
For Bicycle Touring
Bicycle touring lights
Pictures of Equipment Failures
Buying Camping Equipment
I started looking at camping equipment in
a new light when I realized that I was not just buying a new tent or
stove but my new apartment and appliances. After all,
this was not just a vacation but our my nomadic lifestyle.
Researching and buying all of my camping equipment was
almost as confusing and frustrating as buying my new bike. I
have been camping all of my life and have experimented with several
different types of gear and feel that I have a handle on what I like.
There are many reasons to camp while bicycle touring,
backpacking, or trekking. These reasons may include getting out in
nature or the joy of living with few material possessions. Camping and
the equipment involved is absolutely necessary in two situations.
First, if you are traveling in remote places there are often no
hotels or other indoor accommodations within a day's bike ride from each
other. In this case you have no other choice but to camp.
Usually this type of camping does not involve a campground or any other type
of facilities. I typically ride until late afternoon, find a place to
collect several liters of
water, and then ride on until I find a place.
I prefer a flat location,
well hidden from anyone, where I can sleep under the stars or
pitch the tent. This is what some cyclists refer to as "guerilla camping" or "free
camping." Much of North and South American camping fit in this category. In
fact, if you are riding around the world you will find that you often have no
other choice but to free camp.
The second reason that cyclists camp is to save
money. There are places where you can find hotel rooms at the end of every
day. In these places many bike tourists choose to not carry camping
equipment and rent a room every night. This is sometimes called a "credit
card tour." The advantage to this is that you can travel much lighter and
faster. The disadvantage is the expense. You have to pay off that
credit card someday. Places where a credit card tour is possible might
include the eastern states of the USA, Europe, and Japan. In these places
a much cheaper option is to stay in campgrounds or free camp at night.
I stay in hotels when they fit in my budget,
free camp when I have to or to save money, and stay in campgrounds in developed
countries. Below are my favorite retail stores where I like to shop.