Spending time in nature is a wonderful concept that benefits both your physical and mental health in a series of ways. First of all, the sounds of nature tend to relax you and keep you calm, while people who are being closer to nature tend to show a lower likelihood of being on anti-depressants. This is particularly beneficial for children, seeing as how they tend to display fewer behavioral issues. These two reasons alone are more than enough to show you just how pivotal it is not just for you to spend some time in nature but also why bringing your entire family along is a good idea. Still, preparedness the most important for a positive experience and here are some tips on how to have yourself ready and set to go.

1. Basic supplies

First of all, just because you’re at a lake house it doesn’t mean that you can afford to forget bringing drinking water. Same goes for various snacks. Sure, you may intend to fish for food but this isn’t a 100 percent reliable plan, which is why you should always take necessary steps of precaution. Also, bring toiletries with you, due to the fact that you’ll definitely need them and the closest convenience store may be miles and miles away. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.

2. Tent and camping supplies

Unless you already have accommodation of sorts (a lake house, a cabin in the woods), you need to bring a tent, alongside with poles, stakes and tent footprint. Nonetheless, a tent alone is hardly enough. You also need some lights, a fire-starting gear and more. Depending on the region that you intend to visit, as well as the part of the year that you intend to visit it during, you should definitely bring a mosquito net. Overall, once you have this covered, you’re done with the basics and it is time to start customizing your weekend.

3. Pick a theme

While a lot of people prefer to just go there and wing it, there are some ideas that require further preparation. For instance, if you aim to prepare some barbecue, you’ll need a grill and some charcoal, as well as meat, seasoning and necessary utensils. If you’re interested in fishing, you should bring fishing gear and those who aim to explore the area on foot need to look for a pair of sturdy hiking shoes. This will make the overall experience much more enjoyable for everyone and help you get the most out of this trip.

4. Skip the unnecessary items

The next thing you need to understand is the fact that packing light will make things so much easier. This makes packing and unpacking quicker, as well as leaves you with more room for essential items. For instance, while board games are great for quiet evenings in a tent, you can always spend this time telling stories and engaging in other activities. During the day, instead of playing ball with your kids, you can make them a bow and arrow and teach them how to fish. You see, a weekend in nature is an opportunity for you to do new things and try new stuff so why restrict yourself by sticking to routines.

5. You should still bring some self-care

Previously, we’ve mentioned the idea of not bringing unnecessary items, which makes some people confused as to where they should draw the line. Essential medication and sunscreen, on the other hand, are far from unnecessary or redundant. Skin- and hair care products are also something that you should bring in order to make a trip somewhat more enjoyable. Remember, this is all about seeking a positive experience and any item that contributes to this experience is the most definitive must-bring.

6. All sorts of repair kits

In the end, you need to be ready for the scenario where a piece of gear or equipment that you bring starts malfunctioning, which is why you need to bring all sorts of repair kits that you own. Pads, mattress, tent and tarp all have their repair kits and bringing some needle and thread is always a good idea. On top of it all, it doesn’t take much space in your inventory, which helps keep your packing space-efficient. Also, bring an extra set of flashlight batteries on you, just in case and some jumper cables. You never know when you might need them.

In conclusion

As you can see, you need to find a perfect balance between packing all that you’ll need and packing light. On their own, this method is self-explanatory but some may find these methods to be mutually exclusive. A word of advice, don’t expect it all to be perfect, or even run smoothly, on your first try. Nevertheless, with the above-listed six ideas, things should be much easier to manage and for your second trip, you’ll already know exactly what you need.