Rambling Over Coffee: No Camping Road Trips This year - Weddings - And Finally Organizing my Camping Gear and Backpacks

2019 has been a crazy busy year and because the first half of it was spent planning and pulling off a big family wedding, my daughter and I didn't get to make our Girls Road Trip like we usually do in May. Not only that, but most of my 'free' time was spent doing the wedding planning, which was more involved since I was the event coordinator, wedding planner, florist, cake baker... well, everything.  I also had to travel out of a state to help family members a couple times, so even the small solo camping trips I would daydream about weren't happening.

But... I'm always prepared.

One of the items that is important to me is that I have a backpack ready to go camping/hiking at all times.

I actually have two and in the past year or so, it's been in the back of my mind that I'd like to have them both outfitted with the same items so I could grab either one for a spur of the moment camping trip and know they were both 'good to go'.  Also, because if my daughter had 2 days off in a row and could come with, I'd have two packs ready to go, fully stocked, with items I knew I liked and used.  (Previously I kept one fully packed for 'me' and the second was similar, but was more of an accompaniment to my pack so a 2nd person could come with me and we would have to share some items or the 2nd person just didn't 'need' to have it in the pack as we would only need one between us.)  

But my long-term goal has been to have BOTH PACKS outfitted the same so I could grab either one 'to go' or a second person could use the 2nd pack and I knew it had exactly the same items as mine.

Last week I took both packs out of the closet, emptied them and laid out the contents in the office.  Although both packs were similar, they weren't (aren't) where I wanted them to be.  

Over the years I've tried a few different brands or styles of things and some things I have two or three of; others I only have one.  They've stopped making them, or they were too expensive for me to buy two or three of at the time (2 for my camping backpacks and I also have my 'bug out' emergency bag as well as having a get home bag in each of our family members cars with some basics for being stranded on the roads and making their way home due to ice storms, etc. which has happened twice since we've lived here!)

Everyone has different items they need/want/use.  Different skill sets. Different personalities. Different regions of the country where they live to affect what they need. Different styles of 'camping' they do. Every pack will have similar items that are essentials, but you need to pack your bag with items YOU know you will use, need and/or want.

Some of the items were packed in bins in the garage because after our last big trip hiking and camping throughout Arizona, New Mexico and Arkansas, I was exhausted when we arrived home and I HATE unpacking but it MUST be done so I simply packed most of it away in the camping bins in the garage... intending to go through it all 'later'.

Now is apparently later.

So this week I laid out everything, took inventory, and decided what I still needed to buy a 'second' of, what I didn't want in our packs, what I wanted but didn't have yet... and then packed everything back up. 

I was sick of the clutter in my office so I packed everything into the bins, packed the freeze dried food away in my case I keep just for freeze dried meals for camping... and put the empty packs in the closet.

I've started to purchase some of the items I want to have 'double' of so each pack has it's own.  I have a list to purchase online as my budget and time allows.  I'm feeling pretty good about my plan of action.

The camping bins mostly hold items for 'car camping' or extras of items; while I want the packs to be 'grab and go' for when I am not with my car or have the car to supplement that particular trip.

My office is now cleaned up again.  Bins are packed and ready to be taken to the garage again.
My packs are in the in the closet.
My 'inventory' made.
My 'need to purchase one more of those' list is made.

And I hoping I'll be doing a small 1-2 night camp within the next couple weeks (it's 100 degrees, literally, right now so waiting a couple weeks should bring the temps down to high 80's or low 90's) and I'm considering planning a road trip for October...  waiting to see what life throws at me first before I get too excited.

Enough chit chat for now - I've got things to get done.  Don't mind me.... it's just the coffee talking again.



*One of my packs that is still available to buy is the Kelty Redwing 50.  I have the black one and bought mine from Dick's Sporting Goods a few years ago, but I really (really) love this blue one I found on Amazon better;