In many areas, my own included, now is the time to make summer camping reservations before spots fill up for the summer. Camping is inexpensive family fun and a relaxing way to take a break from this high-tech world.
Savvy travelers can choose a location
and reserve a site
, without leaving the comfort of their home office chair. State parks can also be reserved online. If tent camping is a big turnoff for you, many state parks offer camper and mini-cabins as well.
If you have more than one camping vacation planned this year, it'll make your life a lot easier if you streamline your camping gear. That way, when the weekend hits, you can eliminate hours of packing and just grab your things and go.
Be perpetually packed for summer fun by keeping your camping gear in plastic storage tubs. The Art of Manliness has a comprehensive list of things
to include in your tub, including sleeping bag, tent, flashlight, first aid kit, batteries, small broom, wet wipes, bug repellent and matches.
Next, create a list of things that you want to bring along, but that you don't keep in your tub, including: sunscreen, lawn chairs, clothing, toiletries, and food. Plan a simple menu, pack the car, hit the grocery store, then head out into the great wide wilderness for a back-to-nature experience.