Camping with a baby is doable and a very rewarding experience. The time you spend with your baby together in the wilderness is magical. A huge factor in making tent camping with a baby successful is with a few key pieces of gear.
* all affiliate revenue from the links below go directly to Kids Who Explore (My Social Enterprise) where it helps get more kids outdoors. You do not need every single item on this list to have a successful camping trip but I really wanted to compile my favourites for front country camping in one spot to help you have a wonderful camping trip with your baby too. My backpacking blogs will be coming in June.
Camping with a Baby checklist:
First thing is first, I always use this free to download packing list from Kids Who Explore or else I will never remember all of the items that I need to bring.
Sleeping Gear: I love our baby sleeping bag by Morrison Outdoors because it is super warm and cozy and great for safe sleep. I have the 6 month to 12 month size for my 10 month old baby and it fits super well. Use 'kidswhoexplore' for 10% off on your next order. I love the kids sleeping mattress from MEC and the Therma-rest underneath incase it is really cold. Closed cell mattresses with R Value of 3 or more is best for baby. Please also do your own safe sleep research before camping with a baby too.
Tent: We have a four person car camping dog house tent by Big Agnes that is spacious but the zippers do get caught a lot when doing up the tent doors. I love having a spacious tent to be able to fit the play pen into the tent too. I sometimes use my family backpacking tent for 4 as well by MSR and we love it a lot even for car camping.
Diapers & wipes: Always great to bring more than you think you need and wipes help a lot to keep baby's face clean and if you have a toddler too, it is great for how messy they can get at the campsite. I use them for a quick spot wash sometimes too.
Feeding Supplies: I sanitize my bottles and pump before leaving home and store them in a bin in the car with the formula. I boil water to sanitize at the campsite as well. Plus any other teething toys or soothers too.
Clothing and Protection: I love to use merino wool base layers for my kids when camping and I do use bamboo sleepers a lot during the summer too. My two favourite shops for merino wool are from either Wee Woollies (Vancouver Island Family-Owned) or Iksplor (A Lovely Sister Duo based in Jackson WY) and you can use "KIDSWHOEXPLORE" to get 15% off you order with them too. I love this set for my baby. Merino wool is great in the summer because of the breathability, UV protection, moisture wicking, quick dry ability, and temperature regulation. A big brim hat to keep the sun out of babies face helps a lot too. During the evenings, I dress my baby in a fleece onesie if it cools down before bed.
Baby Hygiene: Pack all the baby wipes with you. I skip bath routine when tent camping because there is never a great place to do it. I also have my toddler too so it becomes chaotic to keep everyone safe in the site and focus on bathing a baby. I do keep on top of all diaper changes and teeth brushing. I often bring my Osprey hiking carrier and fill it with the washroom supplies for baby to keep everything convenient
Entertainment items: I overpack often and sometimes I don't use all of the gear but it really is helpful if you do need to take a rest and you want baby in a safe space. A camp story style book, a baby camp high chair, a baby tent, a play yard, an outdoor exercise centre, teething toys, a wrap or soft-shell carrier, and a hammock to snuggle in. These are all items that I have loved bringing along on a car camping trip where I have the luxury of pack extra items into my 4 Runner. I always fully supervise my baby in all of these items too, never leaving them unattended.
Safety items: I pack along sunscreen and bug spray for my toddler and my baby will be at the age this summer where he can use it too. I love Think Baby the most and 3 Moms Organics to help prevent bugs and ticks from getting at us. I always bring a family first-aid kit
These are the items that I love and have brought on my camping trips. Everyone's camping trips do look a little different depening on things like duration and climate. Most of my camping is in British Columbia or Alberta, Canada. I put safety first at all times and I do bring a lot of comfort items when I can drive into the site.
Enjoy every second of your camping trip with your baby because it is magical. Time slows and you can just watch your baby absorb nature. It is a perfect setting.
Happy Camping! Thank you for being here!