What do you use for camping...... And Why.


Well-Known Member
Aug 25, 2003
Central , Florida
Camping............ ?

What do you like and why plus how do you do it ....... No pole on this I am sick of the dam pools everyone is running today.

I know I am opening Pandora's box on this question but we are not a syndicated magazine advertising anything I really would like your ideas on how you do it for your comfort.

1... Tent.
2... Hammock.
3... Bivy
4... Tarp and sleeping bag.
5... Sleeping bag
6... Cot with or without a tarp.
7....Home made out fit.
8... Sleeping in the boat.
9... Rolled up in the tarp.
10... What you are wearing and some form of weather protection ,or not , just roughing it like the explorers. Or anything else that works for you.

Basically it boils down to this ...... What works for you and why it works the way you like it..... Covering all 4 seasons....... If you camp all 4 of them , if not like me then just the better camping times. :D

Your personal ideas and no one else's.......... Just your ideas and what works for your comfort and to hell with anyone else.

No one will say anything negative or make suggestions about your style of camping if they do there post will vanish , that I can promise you so speak your mind freely and clearly.

If they have something to say then they can post about how they do it and nothing else.

Camping is like the boats we make , one has it use for an area while others have other uses for there area .... Let's compare camping notes like we do with the boats. This way we all win. :D


Well-Known Member
Sep 9, 2007
South Louisiana
I guess I'll start. I mostly use a 9'x9' tent. That's about right for one man and his gear. :) I can actually stand up in mine. Can't bear to wiggle into my pants while sitting down.

It has a fly but I will add a tarp over the tent extending out about 10' in front for a front porch.

For a quick overnighter I'll take my little 2 man ??? pup tent.

I use my string hammock for lounging but am thinking about trying a Hennesey hammock.


a Bald Cypress

Well-Known Member
May 7, 2007
Northwest Louisiana

Currently, I use a tent, dome type,[it is supposed to be a three man but, fits one just about right] bought for $62.00. It has windows on each side and a little pocket about ½ way up the inside for glasses or whatever at night.

For sleeping, I use an inflatable mattress and a sleeping bag that is 25 years old. It is some kind of synthetic and can be used as a doublewide or single with different layers top or bottom. Four layers in all. Will also make two single bags.

I have but do not always carry one double burner stove and one single burner. I also have a folding, home made grill.

tx river rat

Well-Known Member
Feb 23, 2007
Waco Tx
Tent is a 9 by 10 dome, soon to be replaced bye a pop up style tent
Single burner propane stove and propane lantern
Folding grill coffee pot cup paper plates metal fork always have a couple knives on me and plastic spoons small plastic bowel.
Depending on menu a small cast iron pot
Military folding cot pillow ,I have two sleeping bags light one for summer and a heavy one for cold weather these are augmented with chemical heat pack that can be put in bottom of the bags.
Just about anything in the summer and in winter gore tex gloves and a parka gore tex system jacket that is a rain coat light jacket a vest and a heavy outside shell
Foot ware runs from red ball rubber boots to hiking boots with always a pair of elk moccasins for camp use.
I have several coolers and they are used according to the length of the trip
Water is carried in 1 gal jugs
I also carry a poly tarp for an extra rain fly or any other use and a roll of small rope.
This list is the basis for my camping and is modified according to menu and kind of camping trip I am going on.


Well-Known Member
Nov 7, 2008
Hoschton, GA
Sherry and I are way on the other end of the spectrum. We've both tent camped in the past (she more extensively than I), but what we currently do is a 19ft Airstream that really is like having out own little mobile hotel room. It maxes out at around 4500 pounds, so I can pull it easily with a half ton truck. It was ridiculously expensive, but we paid for it (no federal bail outs needed) and it really has become a special part of out life. We've taken it on trips to various parks in the mountains up North of Atlanta, to the Smokies, to St. Joe Peninsula in Florida, and a few weeks ago, we spent a week-long vacation seeing the Florida Keys.

This isn't really camping, of course, but they call it a camper, and I thought I'd throw this in with the rest of the responses.


Kayak Jack

Well-Known Member
Aug 26, 2003
Okemos / East Lansing Michigan
SHELTER: My favorite is a Hennessy hammock. I replaced the inadequate rain fly with a Cook Custom Sewing rain fly. I have both a 10'X12' and a 10'X14'. I rig (either one of) them with the 10' lengthwise of the hammock, and about 5' of the fly on one side of the hammock. The larger fly produces a larger covered "patio" alongside the hammock on one side.

I also use either a Eureka 4man timberline (big enough for 2 people) or a Eureka Tundra Tent, 3 man and actually larger than the 4 man Timberline. The Tundra is a long tent, with long vestibules on both ends, but it is more comfortable than the Timberline. Inside the tents, I use a visqueen liner that turns up 6" along all four sides.

SLEEPING BAG: I now have a Campmor 40 degree down bag. I wear clothes when I sleep. More in colder WX. Below 40 I may be wearing my down vest, rain jacket, and rain pants. Carry the bag in three bags: stuff it into a nylon stuff bag; put that into a plastic bag (trash compactor bags are tougher than garbage bags); carry that in a larger nylon stuff bag. This keeps it dry and protected.

PAD: In the hammock, a closed cell foam pad is best. In a tent, I use a Therm-A-Rest 2" thick 3/4 length self-inflating pad.

COOKING GEAR: Nesting kit of GSI anodized aluminum pots.

MESS KIT: Light My Fire from Campmor, item#82725

STOVE: Twig stoves, homemade or LittlBug

LIGHT: Princeton Tec Quad LED headlamp, Campmor# 55981. Lightweight, waterproof, aims where you want it. Get the brightest color you can, not camo. I've lost mine three times. Found it only twice.

WATER: First Need water filter. Much lighter than carrying it with you.

RAIN GEAR: LL Bean Stow Away jacket & pants. I wear the jacket every month of the year.

UNDERWEAR: Only wicking, no cotton. Merino wool shirts and drawers are versatile.

FOOTWEAR: Wicking sock liners Campmor# 01095. Additional wicking socks maybe. For wet work, Chota mukluks. I use the cheapest ones, and add Dr. Scholl's gel pads inside. For dry work, I use New Balance Cross Country low quarters.

HEADWEAR: Akubra hat. Currently it is a Snowy Mountain hat. Digger or Stockman models are also good. Fur felt, wide brimmed. A real "fan the fire water the dog hat."

KNIFE: A tough camp knife made by Joey Dupre', and a Gerber multi tool.

NAVIGATION: Garmin Oregon 400t. Overkill. BUT - get yourself some kind of WATERPROOF GPS and learn how to use it. SUUNTO Matchbox compass. Get ONLY one that is adjustable for declination to True North. Don't screw around adding and subtracting in the field. EXPERTGPS.COM for topo maps. Print them for each trip and take them with you. Spray them with water proofing (Thompson's or Behr) and carry them in ALOKSAK bags to keep them dry. Know how to use map and compass - don't trust your life to something that uses batteries.


Well-Known Member
Sep 9, 2007
South Louisiana
I use a folding grill for most cooking and a Pepsi can alcohol stove for a quick cup of coffee. 4 cup coffee pot, aluminum mess kit with spices and a small bottle of cooking oil , a couple folded pieces of aluminum foil and Bic lighters tucked here and there.

Water in gallon jugs, small cooler, dry bag for clothes and sleeping bag, 3/4" foam sleeping pad , plastic grub box for mess kit and food, parachute cord and 50' of 3/16" rope , compact string hammock. . Flashlights for after dark work.



Well-Known Member
I'm something of a minimalist, and I like to see how little I can get away with bringing. I've pretty much posted my philosophy and my gear list in an earlier post.

When I go truck camping, I'm all about comfort in a tent. I bring plenty to eat and drink, lots of ice, firewood, chairs, a folding table, 5 gal blivot of water, steaks, coolers, big Coleman stove/grill, my big Thunderdome circus tent that sleeps 8, etc.

But, really, again, I'm a minimalist at heart. I like to pack light, camp light, and still be comfortable.

When I went to India for a month, everything I brought fit in my Jansport backpack.

From my kayak camping post:

What you see below is what was packed in my kayak for a four day trip, minus a large ziplock bag filled with Lipton Rice Creations, Lipton Noodles, foil packets of salmon, chicken, and tuna, and the cook stove and water purifier, which were in Mark H.'s kayak.

Not pictured are my GPS, my sandals, and a bag of wine. My VHF radio, strobe light, knife, etc., were on my PFD. Most of the items pictured were packed into the back of the kayak, with the exception of the ground pad, which went into the front.

The big yellow flotation bags have a separate chamber that serves as a dry bag, so, almost everything went into smaller drybags, then those went into the larger flotation/drybags.

Wal-Mart Space Saver bags made good clothing bags. They're waterproof and, of course, save space. Wallet, money, phone, food, etc., was all bagged (sometimes double bagged)into Ziplock bags, then into drybags, then, again, into the big drybags.



Well-Known Member
Aug 25, 2003
Central , Florida
Well I guess it is my turn.

Good weather camping it is the Hennessey Hammock. (Will be trying the Eagles nest in the near future to see what it is like)
Bad weather or cold weather ... Was the Apache tent that went up like an umbrella , wore it out so now I have one of the North Face 32 Rock dome , ( three person but really is for only one ) and the trusty Eureka Timberline as a spare. Only one goes on a trip.
The three person Apache was big enough for a cot inside it which made for some good sleeping.

Sleeping , a Thermarest mattress ( a good 20 years old and still working) . Bags , a 40 degree synthetic , a 20 degree Down , and a 0 degree down bag. Only one at a time on a trip.

Cooking was a single burner Coleman multi fuel and it died on me so it was replaced with a Zip Stove and now the Trangia for my cooking , the 3 ultralight set.
Group camping a two burner Coleman with the necessary pots and pans or cast iron wear.
Pots , one small titanium for the Zip or a stainless GI mess kit ( since then I have gotten the cook kit for the Zip and it is packed with it now ) , the Trangia has the cook wear with it.

Two waterproof sea bags ... one for the bedroom ( Hammock or tent , sleeping bag , mattress {pillow when tent camping } ) and one for the clothing and incidentals including a small tarp.

The food and stove are packed in a Rubbermade Action packer and the river snacks are in a 50 cal ammo can plus the wallet , camera , flashlight , meds and the rest in another 50 cal ammo can , the plastic , waterproof ones , from Cabale's.

One bag is in the bow of the boat , the other in the stern , the food box is behind the seat and the ammo cans are in front of me when paddling. That puts the river snacks (Lunch) in easy reach plus the other can with the camera for taking pictures.
In the small V of the stern and bow are normally a one gallon water jug for a 4 or 5 day trip.
Any room left over has the camping chair , spare paddle , rain coat in a small stuff sack and camp shoes in it. The things you don't want to dig threw a bag to locate in a hurry while on the water.

Car camping ...... The same stuff but it is packed in my little camper without the paddling gear. Plus I take a small ice chest (when car camping which is in the back of the Jeep ) but not on the river.



Well-Known Member
Aug 25, 2003
Central , Florida
Been thinking about my post and the difference between tent and hammock camping.... I can hear several of you groaning at this time and NO ..... this is not an advertisement for hammocks. :lol:
Just a What If and I forgot to post why I like the hammock over a tent.

Watching a TV commercial ... Mattress A only supports three parts of your body and causes pressure points for a uncomfortable nights sleep , while our super duper mattress supports all of your body and is what the astronauts use. ( This brings another question to my mind ... they sleep in 0 gravity ) :?

"O" well to get back to Earth and its gravity.
A air mattress supports part of you body but does create pressure points , something I do agree with the advertisement about and can relate it to camping.
The hammock supports all of your body since we have gravity down here. If it doesn't then that part without support would fall to the ground. :roll:

When you sleep in a tent you are on a sleeping pad , usually 20 by 72 inches and that is all the area you use when sleeping , the same in a hammock no matter how wide or big it is. You have rain protection , same thing in the ... You guessed it , the hammock if you got the camping one.

The hammock camper does not need flat ground , dry ground or rock free ground and those tree roots don't bother us at all since they are way below us , about the only thing that is lower then a hammock camper since we are the outcasts of the camping world. Or are we smarter and very few have caught on to our secret for a good nights sleep. :lol: :lol: :lol:



Well-Known Member
Mar 9, 2005
way down yonder
I like polls better....that way ya kin read the question 'n figger out if someone wants ta know bout how much pull behind trailer ya kin haul, how much gear ya kin cram inta a van 'er pickup, how ta car camp, how much gear ya kin put in a backpack fer hikin' off inta the desert 'er mountains 'er what kinda gear ya take on a kayak odyssey 'er mebbe a canoe expedishun.

Most of my campin' iz frum a truck, base camp. Miz Bear 'n me pitch a 12' x 12' Eureka, set up cots 'n sleepin' bags. We tote a heap a plastic boxes fulla corkscrews, MRE's, pretzels 'n coolers fulla fried bacon, hard boiled eggs, lettuce, mayo, corned beef brisket, mustard, etc. She brings half the kitchen.

Any of ya'll thinkin' bout buyin' a Hennessey, hold off whilst I see if I can sleep in mine. So far, I caint, but I wanna sleep in it the worst kinda way. I been kinda busy lately, but it wont be long til I git away frum the dang barkin' dogs, loud trucks 'n I kin see if I kin sleep in my Hennessey.

I mite even swap it fer a whizbang. :mrgreen:

Mebbe Keith 'n seedtick need a hammock? I been lookin' fer a Beowulf table most of my life.....not like the Holy Grail, but close.


Dragline: Knock it off, Luke. You can't talk about Him that way.

Luke: Are you still believin' in that big bearded Boss up there? You think he's watchin' us?

Dragline: Get in here. Ain't ya scared? Ain't ya scared of dyin'?

Luke: Dyin'? Boy, he can have this little life any time he wants to. Do ya hear that? Are ya hearin' it? Come on. You're welcome to it, ol' timer. Let me know you're up there. Come on. Love me, hate me, kill me, anything. Just let me know it.



Oct 23, 2008
New to forum..and my first post..I fish/camp mountain streams/rivers and bay in NC and Va. my arsenal of gear is as follows:
Hennesey Hammock w/4 season kit and w/personal modifications and Kelty Noahs Tarp per conditions
EXped SynMat Deluxe 9 for real cold weather
Kelty Light Year 40 degree bag most conditions
Custom made Quilt w/2 layers of ClimaShieldXP for real cold conditions
Fleece from light weight to heaviest as needed for trip
Columbia combo pants and shirts (non cotton)
Wicking underwear and socks
Down Jacket w/removable liner, insulated leather boots,gloves head gear and an assortment of the hot hands/toasty toes products for winter
Waders/hikers as needed for summer trips
Gore-tex rain jacket or poncho made from old tent depending on trip
Steri-pen for water purification (mountain streams and clear running water)
Katydyne water bottle as backup
FeatherFire Alcohol Stove w/pot and needed accessories
Trangia ClickStand setup
JetBol(my new favorite)
Assorted waterproof bags, parachute cord,Bic,waterproof matches
Basic first aid kit w/suture kit,snake bite kit,ace bandage,solar blanket,antibacterial wipes and necessities
Platy's water canteen
Casio Pathfinder watch,knife,multi-tool,headlamp,backup flashlight
GPS backup,maps as needed
Food appropriate for planned trip
Energy snack food
Granite Gear Vaportrail 3600 pack summer trips w/camelback hydro
Kelty Agile 4500 for winter trips w/camelback hydro
Most trips I can pack out @ +/-30lbs. w/ winter trips @+/-40Lbs.
Pack fly rods various weights appropriate for trout trips w/dry/nymph flies and accessories
Casting and spin combos for river/sounds/bay trips w/lures etc.
inflatable pontoon kayak for river/stream trips(going to Freedom15)
Plastic SOT kayak for sounds and bays (going to Wadefish 2.0)


Well-Known Member
Jul 22, 2006
Denham Springs, LA
i got one of those WWII vintage jungle hammocks that i got from an army surplus store (back in the 50's when they were really army surplus stores).

spent many a night in it - sleep in the air or sleep on the ground with a small air mattress. It sure keeps those skeeters off

about that Beowulf table - you been talking about that for a long time - why don't you come down one day and we can see what it takes to fix you up


Well-Known Member
Aug 26, 2003
I'm really not that much a gear head and believe the less you can get away with the better. I also don't want that much organization in my life. So many things control our life as it is....... Some organization is good.....but if you need that much stuff. I dunno.... :roll:

Since paddle/camping with this bunch, some of the best things I have picked up has been the Hennessy Hammock, Cookes tarp and Sierra stove.

When ya look at Harry, Ray, Van and those guys...They paddle an ancient tin boat, alot of their gear is old or home made from something else, and they get along just fine. They really enjoy their outings.

Swampy on the Buffalo looked and camped like a homeless waif with his blue tarp and such. He did just fine and had a great time. His only high tech gear was a Hennessy and Sierra stove. Mess kit was thrown together from a flea market along with other things.

I guess it's all a matter of preference. I don't know what the line is between a gear head and a true wilderness canoer. I guess being prepared is the most important thing on the list.


Well-Known Member
Nov 9, 2006
OYaker said: I don't know what the line is between a gear head and a true wilderness canoer. I guess being prepared is the most important thing on the list.
Mr. Yaker I have to agree with this last statment it isn't what cha carry it's do you know how ta use the stuff to survive and have a good time at it.
Joe ( the guy whom is goin ta paddle a barge down the ST. Mary.)


Well-Known Member
Nov 9, 2006
Here is a list of the stuff I plan to tote and do tote with me on most trips.
Hennessy Hammock fer the sleepin in the trees
Eurika 3 man built fer 1 or 2 if your friendly /under tarp
Coleman bag fer cool nights
old injun wool blanket with a hole in it half way in it works as a warmin poncho by the fire while sittin gittin an edjumacation from the older knowlegdable folk

Big cole man cooler cause I need ta carry refreshments
Plastic tote the wife gave me cause she said I need ta carry dry food
dry bag for my dry clothes incase I take a dip
waterproof box from wally mart to have the camera close
Estwing 32 inch hatchet fer choppin stuff:IE: big fish,gator,wood
11 inch bowie style cookin cuttin knife
9 inch survival knife hooked to my PFD
1/2 gal o fresh water per day o the trip fer coffee and such/ plenty coffee
fishin stuff : rod reel hooks
for food I most time tote
steaks frozen hard before trip
spam with or without built in cheese
home made hard tack/or corn dodgers
tortilly shells
a couple cans o beans and beef stew
ritz crackers
fish steaks in hot sauce
new this year: frozen real hard before trip bread dough for fresh DO bread Damper style
jerky made here cause I still cant find a good one on the market
assorted sesonings to go with cookin
eatin plate
fork spoon knife thing from Wally
head lamp
personal service items
fer cookin on
I take a tri pod grill and a sit on the gound grill folds up
Dutch oven with a skilet lid
Coffee pot
may have fergot a couple things but dont think so if i did didn't need em any how.

old army shovel fold up kind


Well-Known Member
Aug 26, 2003
Joe! You are ready my friend! Looks like you have what you need to do what you want to do with what you are taking.
What is important, you feel comfortable confident and happy with what you are taking to do with what you want to do with.....?

Dropped into the teens last night Joe with light covering of snow. Take some good pictures and give me a mental vacation from old man winter after your St. Mary's trip.

WORD of CAUTION! When Chuckles opens up a can of Vienny's.....don't put your hand in front of his face, he can confuse fingers with Vienny's! :shock: