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Outdoors | May 9, 2021

9 RV Camping Tips for Beginners

Camping RV Campsite Pets

Camping is all about s’mores and hikes and time with friends and family. But it’s also about setting up camp, even if you’re camping with an RV. We’ve put together some RV tips for beginners to help make your first or next outing as easy as possible.  

Get to Your Campsite Before Dark: This will ensure you don’t park somewhere unsafe, and that you find the right spot. Additionally, it’s advisable to take down camp and leave before noon on the day you depart. This will make things less stressful for everyone.

Get a Set of Leveling Blocks: Stackable leveling blocks placed under the wheels of your vehicle can help you level your RV and ensure it stays in one place.

Start with Level Ground: Sure, most RVs have leveling kits or jacks, but starting with a level piece of ground will make life a lot easier. If you’re not staying in a campground, look for a site that is above any nearby ponds, lakes or streams. You don’t want to be below the local waterline. You also want to be away from too many tree roots and shrubs. 

Always Consider the Weather: Even if you have an RV, the weather can play a big role in your camping trip. Check out our article that covers tips for camping in the rain. Bring along card games and books just in case you find yourself trapped in the RV for a few days.

Bring a Leash for Every Pet: Just because you’re camping doesn’t mean your dogs can run free. While the U.S. Forest Service does not require dogs be on a leash at all times, they do require they stay on leash in designated campsites. These leashes cannot be longer than 6-feet in length. If your dog is off-leash outside a campground, they must be under control at all times to avoid issues with other campers, wildlife, and pets.  

Don’t Temp Wildlife: You don’t want to bring bears, coyotes, raccoons, and other critters to your campsite. If you can keep food and leftovers in your RV, do it.  

Bring Along Tools : Things need tightening and repair all the time on an RV. Bring along duct tape, a set of Allen and hex wrenches, scissors. Zip ties, rubber bands, screwdrivers, a small hammer, and screws or nails.

Pack More than Enough Cookware: If you didn’t bring the frying pan, you cannot just go back home and get it. With an RV, it’s better to overpack than under-anticipate.

Don’t Use Regular Toilet Paper: To avoid the unpleasant chore of fishing toilet paper out of your septic hose and black tank, use dissolvable toilet paper. Septic-safe toilet paper can also work well.

Learn to Empty Your Gray and Black Tanks Before You Go Camping: Ask a friend, family member, or read the instruction manual that came with your RV. The bottom line is, empty the black tank first, then the gray tank to rinse out the septic hose.

We have even more camping tips, such as where to camp as well as fees and restrictions, and quick tips for Northwest camping.

Start Every Camping Trip at Coastal

When it comes to camping and the great outdoors, your Northwest owned and operated Coastal has everything you need for RV and tent camping. That includes sleeping bags, tarps, camp stoves, camping chairs, fishing poles and tackle, freeze-dried camping food, as well as jackets, rain gear, boots, and socks.

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