Camp safety should be on the top of your priority list when you are preparing to head off on your next adventure. Whether you are going alone or with family, making sure you have an up to date first aid kit is paramount to everyone’s health and wellbeing. Sometimes, it can be hard to know what to pack, and that is why we have taken the difficulty out and created this quick checklist for you to follow. You can even print it out and take it to the shop with you when you go to buy supplies.
The Importance of First Aid
It is essential that you bring a first aid kit with you when you go camping. After all, the worst that can happen after purchasing the contents is that it doesn’t get used – and, in many ways, that’s the best outcome. If a member of your group becomes sick or is injured, the first aid kit can provide them with quick relief – helping them to get through and recover, or tiding them over until you can get to a hospital.
It might be an idea to take a first aid course before you go on your trip if you haven’t already. After all, you never know when it will come in handy, and if something happens, you will have a better and more educated idea of what to do. They don’t tend to cost a lot or last a very long time, so it won’t absorb too much time and money. Plus, the skills you come out of it with are well worth it.
What You Will Need
In this section, we go through two important areas. The first is how to select and create your first aid kit with a nifty step-by-step guide. After that, we look at what you will need in your first aid kit, both for a personal box and a group/family one.
Making Your First Aid Kit
#1 Deciding on the Size
The first thing you need to do is determine how big the first aid kit needs to be. Are you going alone? As a couple? With family? With friends? This is an important question to ask yourself, as the answer will help you to determine how big the first aid kit needs to be. If it is just you, or you have one other person coming, a small kit that fits in your pack is all that you need.
If you are going in a larger group, then you will likely need a bigger kit with more supplies inside it. If you are taking a campervan or motorhome, then you should also consider a car kit. This contains key pieces of equipment like bungee cords and spark plugs. It’s good for those unexpected breakdowns and emergencies.
#2 Choosing a Container
This is another important step to take. The best containers to use are reusable lunch boxes, plastic tubs with clip-on lids, food tins, and old tackle boxes. As long as it is secure and can be compartmentalised for organisational purposes, it will probably be a good first aid box.
The best thing to do is to use something that has already been used, so you are reusing the box. This saves waste, which can have a positive impact on the environment. Of course, you can also purchase first aid boxes and kits from your local shop or chemist, but they don’t always have everything you need inside.
#3 Stocking the First Aid Kit
Now, you need to get ready to stock the first aid kit. If you are looking for what you need to put inside, please refer to the two checklists below: personal and family first aid contents. The personal checklist is good for up to two people, and the family one is ideal for groups. You can print these lists off, or you can take them with you on your smartphone.
Visit your local chemist or supermarket with the checklists below and start to browse the shelves for the items that you need. If you get stuck at any point, it should be easy to find an expert to help you – especially if you are in a chemist. Stocking the kit should not take long, and it is important that you bring everything listed. After all, you never know what is going to happen next.
#4 Don’t Forget Personal Medication
You should never forget to bring any of your personal medication with you when you go camping, and you should always bring more than you need. If you find yourself stuck for a few extra days, it is good to know that you have brought enough of your personal medication to see you through. Make sure this is at the top of your priority list when you go to pack everything up.
#5 Take the Climate into Consideration
The expected weather conditions of the area that you are camping in may require you to bring a few specialist items and pack them in your kit. For example, if the weather is going to be hot and sunny, then you may need to bring some sunscreen to protect your skin from the sun’s rays.
If you plan on going somewhere cold, on the other hand, then lip balm and moisturiser should be packed up. This will prevent your lips and skin from cracking due to the cold, keeping your hands smooth, as well as your mouth. There is nothing worse than the cracks getting so bad they bleed, after all.
#6 Organise the Supplies
Now that you have all of your supplies, you can start to organise them in your chosen container. Group them together according to what they are used for, so things like medicine in one section, bandages and plasters in the other, and so forth. This will make the items easier to locate in case of emergency.
Somethings should be placed in a Ziploc bag before they are packed away. Things like lotions and creams with a strong scent can attract predators, and the plastic bag will work to mask this scent. This is especially important if you are planning on camping abroad.
#7 Check Your Kit Over
The final thing you need to do before you are finished getting your kit ready is to give it a thorough once over. Before you leave, it is essential that you make sure you have absolutely everything packed and ready to go. Make sure none of your medication has expired, everything is in order, and all of the items on the list have been checked off.
Personal First Aid Kit Contents
- Gauze Pads
- Nail Clippers
- Antiseptic Ointment
- Personal Medications
- Sewing needles
Family First Aid Kit Contents
- Gauze Pads
- Water Purifying Tablets
- Antiseptic Ointment
- Ace Bandages
- Bug Bite Lotion
- Baking Soda
- Stomach Medicine
- Diarrhea Medicine
- Cold Tablets
- Cough/Throat Lozenges
- Antiseptic Wipes
- Butterfly Plasters
- Cold Pack
- Calamine Lotion
- Sunburn Lotion
- Tooth Wax
- Tooth Repair Paste
- Oil of Cloves
- Eye Patch
- Eye Lubricant
- Smelling Salts
- Disinfectant Soap
- Latex Gloves
- CPR Breathing Mask
- Charcoal Tablets
- Triangular Bandages
- Sewing Needles
Hopefully, this list contains everything that you need to create an effective first aid box that can treat a number of ailments – from illness to minor injury. Remember to always have your phone charged and ready to go when you are camping so that you can call for help, and always make sure that you get a person to the hospital if they start to go downhill. Safety is more important than a camping trip.
What did you think of our first aid checklist for camping? Is there anything that you would have added? We love hearing from you, so make sure you leave us a message in the comments below.
If you are in the US you can check out this guide here.
A seasoned camper and hiker, there is nothing he doesn’t know about the Great Outdoors. Hiking alone, with friends, or even little ones, he’s done it all. A trained survivalist, he gives Bear Grylls a run for his money.