6 Camping Safety Tips to Get You Through the Summer

Camping and spending time in the great outdoors is a fun way to bond with the family. Hearing the birds, feeling the breeze, and getting out of the house can do everyone a world of good. That is definitely the case right now, with the coronavirus still raging.

You’ll feel good being out in nature, but some dangers exist of which you and your family should be aware. Follow these tips if you’re roughing it this summer, and everyone in your party can stay safe.

Fire Danger

There’s something wholesome and primal about sitting around in front of a blazing fire. It’s the American way to roast hotdogs and marshmallows, but you also need to be aware of wildfire danger. Every year, wildfires:

  • Burn many woodland acres, particularly in California and the Pacific Northwest
  • Cause millions in property damage
  • Kill many people and leave others homeless

The thing about wildfires, though, is that you can prevent many of them. Make sure not to start a campfire where there is lots of dried brush around. You should also clear the area around the fire, keeping in mind that sparks can fly a significant distance in high winds.

Venomous Snakes

In many states, venomous snakes live that can deliver a nasty bite. Their venom may be fatal to young children, and even to some adults if you can’t get medical attention in time. Be aware of:

  • Copperheads
  • Cottonmouths
  • Various rattlesnake species

You can find venomous snakes in nearly every state. If you’re going to be heading into the woods, desert, swamp, or elsewhere snakes live, tell your kids to watch out for them, and do so yourself.  

It’s helpful if you can get a wildlife field guide to identify the snakes you see. You can also look at pictures of them online before you go, to get an idea of what you should look for as you navigate their territory.

Ticks

In summer’s height, ticks proliferate, and you and the rest of your family need to look out for them. Ticks often wait in tall grass for animals to come along to which they can attach themselves. They also drop down from trees, so if you’re walking through the woods, you might make a tempting target.

Wear long-sleeve shirts and long pants to prevent ticks from latching onto you. That’s not much fun in the summer heat, but better to sweat than get Lyme disease, which ticks sometimes carry. When you return from a hike, your whole family should check one another to see if you’ve picked up any unwanted passengers.

Wild Animals

There are other potentially threatening animals living in some regions. Depending on where you and your family decide to do your camping, you might be in wolf territory, or bear, or mountain lion. Coyotes live in many states as well.

Bears and mountain lions are apex predators, and one might hunt you if it’s hungry enough. It’s more likely that they’ll go after smaller, weaker prey, so if you have young children in your group, it’s them you need to watch out for more than anyone else.

You’ll be safer if you stay in a group. Don’t let anyone wander off by themselves. You should do a little research before you go on your trip to know what to do if you encounter a dangerous animal.

Dehydration

Dehydration is something that can happen quite easily during the summer. That is particularly true if you’re hiking during the hottest part of the day in areas with little shade.

You should try to drink eight eight-ounce glasses of water per day, or even more if you’re sweating quite a bit. Bring water with you when you go camping. You don’t know if there’s going to be a potable water source nearby or a store from which you can replenish your supplies.

Bees, Wasps, and Hornets

One more potential concern during your camping adventure is bees, hornets, and wasps. Any of those three can deliver a nasty sting. What’s worse, some people have allergies, and for them, a sting is perilous.

Make sure to watch out in areas where stinging insects congregate. Give them a wide berth, and don’t do anything to agitate them.

These types of insects protect their hives, and they act as one against threats. You don’t want to have a whole horde of angry insects dive-bombing you.

If you watch out for these threats, you and your family should enjoy your camping adventure.

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