Dear Amy: My family and I are going camping for the first time. Do you have any advice on how to stay safe and what to pack? — Janie Z., Tacoma, Washington
Dear Janie: Camping can be fun for the whole family if you follow some important safety precautions, especially if you’ll be in a wooded area.
Part of the fun of camping is cooking over an open fire, but to prevent forest fires, keep a few simple rules in mind. Before you build a campfire, make sure that the campground allows fires and that conditions are safe: Wind and dry vegetation make campfires too dangerous. Pick a sheltered spot at least 15 feet from trees, shrubs, low branches and your tent. Find out more at smokeybear.com/en/prevention-how-tos/campfire-safety.
If it’s your first time camping, you may be wondering what to pack. You will need certain items for outdoor lodging. A tent, sleeping bags, sunscreen, pillows, daypacks, folding chairs, flashlights and a water filter or treatment tablets are a few of the essentials.
Make sure you have everything you need by checking out the recommendations at Camping Checklist, rei.com/learn/expert-advice/family-camping-checklist.html.
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