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Are you a minimalist?

Discussion in 'Other Camping' started by JessiFox, Nov 14, 2014.

  1. JessiFox

    JessiFox Novice Camper

    Pretty much just what the title says ;) do you get by with the basics for camping and keep your costs pretty low, or are you one who likes to have the latest/nicest gadgets and accessories and such to accompany you on your adventures?
  2. JoshPosh

    JoshPosh Pathfinder

    Back in the day, the only electronics we brought was a wrist watch. Everything else was pretty much for survival and not convenience. Sure we might of had some can of beans or soup, but for the most part it was really basic and we caught most of the food that we ate while camping. we were about 3 to 4 hours drive from the nearest city.
  3. Northern Dancer

    Northern Dancer Survivalist

    I like your stuff JP. ;)

    I'm very much a minimalist when it comes to tripping BUT, everything is up for grabs when it comes to base camp - designed to be comfortable as well as relaxing. When it comes to tripping it's wash one, wear one. Like the trip master always says, "You brought it...you carry it!" I have excellent equipment that is more practical and lighter to carry including my canoe.


    Even the dog is expected to do his share. How 'bout that - I just noticed that Reese's pack is not on straight.
  4. campforums

    campforums Founder Staff Member

    I like to think I am somewhere in between @Northern Dancer and @JoshPosh. I don't bring more than I am comfortable carrying but my ruck sack is big enough that I have no trouble fitting some spare clothes, tools for cooking, a tent and comfortable bedding. The more trips you go out on you will become more efficient at packing. For example after your first trip you will probably take a ton of things out of your pack and realize you never even touched a particular item for the entire length of your time. Those are the things that you definitely won't be bringing with you next time. Vice versa, you will also probably remember for example how hard it was to make tinder from larger sticks without a good sharp knife and decide to bring one next time.

    Your packing list is always improving ;)
  5. Northern Dancer

    Northern Dancer Survivalist

    Right on...you really do learn a lot on that first trip.

    The other thing that I/we had to learn [and it took a long time] was to give up property rights.

    What do I mean by that?

    Well EVERYONE wants to bring an axe, - we end up with 6 of them. EVERYONE wants to bring a stove - we end up with six of those too. NO ONE wants to put food in their pack - though all expect that someone will, just not them. SO...we learned to pack three to five days before, sort out who was bringing what. NO DUPLICATION.

    "BUT I WANNA..." so we have to use a bit of diplomacy. The trip master has the final say and his word is law. Since we all have an opportunity to be in that position we tend to be fair.
  6. JessiFox

    JessiFox Novice Camper

    Interesting to see where everyone's at on this one...I suspect I'll fall more in line with the minimalist camp, though I'm not so intent on 'roughing it' that I won't bring anything comfortable ;). I can see how it would be a hassle with everyone so focused on their own wants that you end up with too much of one thing and none of another...something to keep in mind for sure as I likely would have overlooked that tendency.
  7. Northern Dancer

    Northern Dancer Survivalist

    It all depends on the kind of camping you plan to do; length of the trip and what your goal is.
  8. campforums

    campforums Founder Staff Member

    Oh yeah, I can attest to that. What I've learned to do is create an online packing list with something like Google docs that way everyone can help contribute to help making sure nothing is forgotten and everything is packed and if something does get missed everyone else will know exactly who to blame haha! I make the list usually and sometimes people add a few additional items and then by the time the trip comes around each item has a note beside it like "packed by ____".
  9. Northern Dancer

    Northern Dancer Survivalist

    That's a good idea. The other tip is that we pack the van or vans two days before we leave. That saves a whole lot of time on the day of the event start. It seemed to me that we spent a chunk of time just packing. Now we just get in the van(s) and we are off; I do the same when I go solo.
  10. JessiFox

    JessiFox Novice Camper

    The packing list is an excellent idea. I would be less prone to forget things if I had a list to check half a dozen times over ;). I'm a big fan of lists for pretty much anything though, so no surprise a camping list is appealing as well.
  11. Northern Dancer

    Northern Dancer Survivalist

    That is why I decided to make lists. I have more than one - for interior camping, base camp, shopping etc.

    When I'm heading out everything goes on the loading dock [my front veranda]. I check things off and pack accordingly. I found when I did that it was much easier to organize the van.
  12. happyflowerlady

    happyflowerlady Survivalist

    We always went camping someplace where we could drive right down to the lake, or stream where we were camping, so we didn't have to carry things in like some people do who go into the more remote areas to camp. I think that we were pretty much toward the minimalist side of the coin, and usually just had the basic necessities along with us.

    My mom always made a lot of the food ahead of time, and had a big Coleman camp cooler to carry the perishable things in, and she had one of those old fashioned woven picnic baskets that had a set of lightweight plastic camping dishes in it. We only used them when we went camping, and they were always packed (neat and clean) in the basket and ready to go.

    The cooking rack (an old oven rack) went over the campfire, and we had a camp coffee pot, and a big cast iron skillet to cook the fish in, as well as our breakfast of bacon, eggs, and pancakes, Those breakfasts on camping trips were the best breakfasts in the whole world, and when I took my own kids camping, we did the same thing.

    I really like to cook over a campfire....not every day, you understand; but when you are out there camping in the deep woods by a beautiful blue lake, then cooking over the campfire is the greatest thing ever !
  13. Northern Dancer

    Northern Dancer Survivalist

    You bet it is...isn't it amazing that simplicity creates an ambiance that tantalizes the soul and lifts the spirit; especially when one is outdoors. That's why I love and cherish it. :):bear:

    121d5yh.jpg x1ees3.jpg rwrln9.jpg

    My camp site at Canisbay
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  14. campforums

    campforums Founder Staff Member

    I like that barrel-style fire pit, it looks like it'd be very easy to mount a grill on top without much difficulty. Maybe a bit of a pain to get the used embers out after the fire has died out but manageable if you had a shovel.
  15. Northern Dancer

    Northern Dancer Survivalist

    The grate is on a natural hook on a tree. And yes I have a shovel and a rake - a handy tool. I do have a portable campfire ring with animal designs. They are becoming popular. The one in the picture is the camp site fireplace. I would only use this at a base camp.

    images?q=tbn:ANd9GcTkLoqDnKKEDa6xgyqj1HcspBdHg6mskyZ6mbsG00cMOvFWkOfi.jpg Mine looks something like this.
  16. campforums

    campforums Founder Staff Member

    Wow, I know I shouldn't really be surprised considering all your other branded gear you've posted but there's that bear again!! :D

    It is a good idea I suppose, although I normally just prob the cooking grate up between some rocks. Sometimes it takes a while to get things just right, but I suppose even with that it takes some time to do as well.
  17. Northern Dancer

    Northern Dancer Survivalist

    Ya...it's just about on everything. :bear: Here I am. I use a homemade stove with a small grate on top. The other times I make a small cooking fire with a bigger grate - it's whatever I fancy at the time. I have made earth ovens but it takes to much time if it's for a short stay.
  18. campforums

    campforums Founder Staff Member

    Metal working is another cool hobby I would like to take up eventually lol, I'd love to see what you've cooked using an earth oven. I've eaten food that has come from a wood burning clay oven which I imagine would be similar and it tasted phenomenal!
  19. Northern Dancer

    Northern Dancer Survivalist

    I've made monastery muffins - real easy to do, using the add water only. You can make bread and pizza type concoctions and very definitely one pan meals like - pork chops, with cream of mushroom soup poured over top (without water added),thinly sliced potatoes, a bit of onion, a pat of butter/margarine. Depending on the size of the pan (I do enough for self or two or three people) and it takes about 45ish minutes.

    The earth oven is a project and takes a bit of time. :(

    HOWEVER :finger: I can cook anything in a Dutch Oven - breads, main courses, soups, desserts, meat etc. etc.

    I suppose one could say, if you just brought a Dutch Oven , you could pass as a minimalist. You use the top as a fry pan.

    Last edited: Jan 1, 2015
    happyflowerlady and 2sweed like this.
  20. kevinkimers

    kevinkimers Novice Camper

    Good question. Well normally I'm a minimalist but now that I am getting older, it would be nice to have the finer things I guess. However, financially, it is not always possible. Maybe one day we will get into the newer items that are available, but until then... we will stay minimalist.
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