For some people – a handful of them – camping may sound like a huge inconvenience that is forced upon themselves. They think that way probably because they have never been to a campsite, or perhaps it’s their vicarious experience talking which they have gathered from movies, TV shows and other stories that glorify the dangers of this adventurous activity.

If you have the itch to go camping but are not sure if you should be doing this, try recollecting the memory of riding a bicycle for the first time or getting your first tattoo or piercing. It didn’t end up that bad, did it?

The same goes for camping. Unless you try it, you are never going to find out.

Now if you have made up your mind, here are a few tips that should keep you safe and dry throughout your camping escapade.

Let your family know your location

Camping is risky in a way that you might lose directions or get besieged by a herd of predators or experience a hard fall from a cliff. When you have broken bones, you can’t go far and will need someone to come looking for you. I’m not saying you will break a bone, but it’s a possibility when you are in the unknowns of the wild. In that scenario, your family or friends should know where you are going so that at least they can rescue you in case you lose contact.

Carry extra pairs of socks

Camping is not just about pitching a tent, setting up the fire and make noodles. It starts right when you go off the beaten track. Although the hiking part is often not talked about, it’s a whole journey with ups and downs, tripping and falling, but you got to keep moving. While walking through the woods, you may have to pass through puddles, streams or simply walk in the rain. If there’s anything that annoys more than a drenched body, it’s wet socks. Carrying extra pairs of socks will keep you warm and dry when you cozy up inside the tent. If you can, carry an extra pair of shoes as well.

Keep the essentials handy

When you go camping, there are certain survival tools you must carry. One of them is an electric drill. Just kidding; it’s not.

When you are out and about in the woods, you need a pocket knife that is reasonably small to fit into your pocket and big enough to sharpen wood, slice meat, kindle a fire, fend off aggressive wild animals and more. Why a pocket knife? Because you can flick open it anywhere and you need not carry a sheath to store it. Sometimes, the best folding pocket knife is the one that you didn’t buy. Therefore, it is important to do your research before buying one.

Gather more wood than booze

When you are camping, even the finest rum or whiskey can’t get you through the cold night. You need sufficient wood to keep the fire kindled at least during your waking hours or let it burn all night to keep animals at bay.

Camping in a hotter place?

The heat can take a toll on you in more than one way, which is why you will need an ice cooler to avoid food spoilage. Placing dry ice underneath your regular ice will keep you going a little longer. Also, you can create layers of ice to slow down the melting.

Camping is fun when you go fully prepared. It’s pretty much manageable without an extra pair of pants but the essentials mentioned above must be at the top of your list.