CAMPING WITHOUT WASTE
Camping is supposed to be about connecting with nature, living minimally and leaving behind the modern day stresses and technologies. However without all the comforts of your home sometimes you end up hurting nature by creating huge amounts of waste that is really not necessary.
Here I’ve put together some suggestions for having a successful camping trip that doesn’t cause you to have 5 big bags or rubbish at the end.
Take stainless steel or reusable plastic plates, utensils and cups. Also cooking equipment that can be used time and time again, containers and jugs for food and drink that you’re bringing with you that can be refilled along the way and at neighbouring towns.
Plan all your meals and snacks ahead of time so you can work out what quantity you need, what’s possible to prepare without cooking and what doesn’t take up too much time or heat to cook. For example, you can make some pasta sauces at home and put them in jars and you can buy fruit and vegetables that can be cut up easily for snacks such as apples, carrot, avocado and celery.
BAGGING YOUR OWN
Take along cloth bags and containers to the shops and ask for products to be given to you in them, as while they might look at you strangely and it could cause a little inconvenience you can avoid a lot of waste. Try fishing for dinner and collecting food from the area (but only if you are able to check what is safe to eat).
If you must buy packaged food don’t get the single servings, and collect food scraps to take home for your compost.
Alcoholic drinks can be an issue, so if you’re definitely going to drink then buy the biggest servings possible and be sure to recycle everything.
For cooking, you should ask around about where you can collect firewood or buy it without excessive packaging and learn how to start a fire with kindling, newspaper and matches (from personal experience I can say this may take a while).
As it can be harder work to feed everyone while avoiding waste, you could pop into town to visit a restaurant (not fast food) once or twice, of course, if it isn’t too far away from your campsite.
Borrow tents and camping gear, as these objects are not used so frequently and not everyone needs to own everything when we can share. If you are going to buy things wait till your second trip, or think about what will also be used around the house (sleeping bags, mattress for guests etc).
Take along duct take to mend any tears or broken poles in the tent and be sure to repair it yourself or take it to a store that will do this for you rather than replacing it.
You will need to take along a first aid kit, sunscreen and bug spray that could cause you to have some waste. However consider buying liquids in bulk and transferring into smaller reusable bottles, and instead of Band-Aids use a cloth that can be washed and reused.
Do you have any other tricks you use to avoid waste while camping? Share your ideas in the comments below.