The Ultimate Guide to Camping: From Backpacking to RV’ing

The Ultimate Guide to Camping: From Backpacking to RV’ing

May 30, 2020

Enjoying nature comes in many different vehicles when it comes to visiting the National Parks. 

There's everything from the ultra-rugged backcountry trips (where it's just you and a bag) to having a half-million dollar luxury vehicle at your disposal and everything in-between. 

Let's explore the three most common types of camping in the National Parks. 


Backpacking – For the true outdoorsman/outdoorswoman 

Also known as backcountry camping, backpacking is the most fundamental type of camping there is.  Just you, your travel crew, and a backpack full of supplies.

Nothing beats this, if you have the time, energy and love taking a little risk.  There's just something about eating dehydrated food, sleeping on a paper-thin mat, and hauling out your own poo, that makes you feel like you're in nature!

While backpacking can be limited in the National Parks, there are certain areas that are designated for backcountry camping.  Do your research before you set off. 

If you decide to backpack, make sure to have all the necessary supplies.  Check out our page for a good  of backpacking supply checklist. 


Car Camping –  A classic family favorite! 

When we car camp, we are very much like goldfish - we take up as much room as our environment will allow. 

Meaning, you will fill your car up with as much shit as you possibly can.  

You can pack everything from a comfy air mattress, chairs, to enough food to feed an army (or your family). 

This is the most family-friendly option when it comes to visiting a National Park.  It's very inexpensive, allows you to bring more than you need, and creates a bonding experience your kids will never forget! 

Reservations can be extremely difficult to secure, so make sure to book in advance!  Make reservations at the NPS Site


RV’ing – The mac daddy of them all! 

If you have the budget, this can be the gourmet version of National Park hopping. And the more you camp, the more you notice the different types of people that are RV folk.

There are usually three types of people who are into RV'ing:

1. I love camping, but I hate camping - we all know these people. Maybe you are one of these people.  They love the outdoors, the beautiful scenery, hiking, and everything else about the National Parks, but they hate being uncomfortable and roughing it for a few days.  

It's all good!  We love our boujee campers :) 

2. We paid our dues - Been there, done that

These are the people who have earned their strips and spent the good ol' days camping in tents and backpacking throughout the wilderness.

They now desire a more pampered life and decided to make the investment in comfort (I can't wait to join them!)

3. This is a lifestyle - what house? 

These are the people who lead a different life.  One not made for the common person. 

Slab City comes to mind.  Home of the free folk.  Those that take the road less traveled.  They hop from place to place in their home and decide where to drop anchor for the day.

What a life!

No matter what type of camper you are, you can enjoy the 84 million acres of National Park!  This land is our land. 

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