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Camping For Boys By H. W. Gibson Characters: 9876

Updated: 2017-11-30 00:03


Experience only can determine what should be taken to camp. Usually the first camping trip decides what to take on the second trip, and also reveals how few things, providing they are right things, one really needs to be comfortable in camp. A boy's mother, who is generally the official trunk packer of the family, makes a mistake in stowing away in the trunk a lot of things not serviceable or suitable for camping. Cotton goods, except towels, handkerchiefs, and hose, are of no use. Gray woolen shirts, gray, brown, or green sweaters (a boon to campers-avoid white, red, or striped colors), khaki suit, outing flannel pajamas (tan color preferred) are in the class of real camp necessities so far as clothing is concerned. The hat should be drab or khaki color, of campaign style, something that will shed water and sun. The hat used by the Boy Scouts of America is admirably adapted for campers.

The outfit may be divided into four classes: things necessary, things desirable, things convenient, and luxuries. Boys who go camping for two weeks or less should take articles in the following list marked (1); those who go for four weeks or less should take articles marked (2) in addition to those marked (1); and those who go for what may be called the season, six or more weeks, should take those marked (3), in addition to all of (1) and (2).


Woolen sweater (coat style) (1)

Note book or diary (1)

Twine and rope (2)

Two flannel shirts (gray) (1)

Lead pencil (1)

Change of underwear (1)

Pens and ink (2)

Two pairs stockings (1)

Stamps, stamped envelopes (1)

Jersey (2)

Outing flannel pajamas (1)

Paper, postals and envelopes(2)

Running pants (1)

Handkerchiefs (1)

Needles and thread (1)

Two pairs woolen blankets (1)

Matches in metal box (1)

Poncho (1)

Folding drinking cup (1)

Turkish towels (1)

Strong pocket knife on chain(1)

Extra pair heavy shoes (2)

Toilet soap (in aluminum or

celluloid box) (1)

Echo whistle (2)

Fishing tackle (2)

Comb and brush (1)

Camera (2)

Tooth brush and tooth paste(1)

Small-sized Bible (1)

Money (1)

Pins and safety pins (safeties one-inch and four-inch) (1)

Good disposition (1)

Leggings-tan, army style (1)


Extra suit of clothes (2)

Rubber-soled shoes (sneakers) (1)

Soft laundered shirt (2)

Bathing suit or tights (2)

Small compass (2)

Small mirror (1)

Baseball, bats, gloves (2)

Whisk broom (2)

Tennis racquets and balls (3)

Dish towels (2)

Ping Pong racquets, balls (3)

Cheap watch (1)

Rubber boots or overshoes (2)

Map of vicinity (2)

Clothes pins (2)

Musical instruments (2)

Flash lamp (2)

Scissors (2)

Repair outfit (2)


Games (3)

Can opener (2)

Books (3)

Small hand washboard (3)

Small pillow (2)

Thick strong gloves (3)

Mosquito netting (2)

Heavy woolen stockings (3)

Candles (3)

Elk hide moccasins (3)


Bath robe (3)

Blacking and brush (3)

Shaving outfit (3)

Laundry bag (2)

Face rag (3)

It is understood that cooking utensils; tools, tents, cots and the general camp equipment is supplied by the camp management. The above list is for the individual campers.

Mark Everything

Mark everything with your initials, or, if in a large camp, your camp number. This may be done with indelible ink upon white tape, and the tape sewed upon the garments, or you may order through the large department stores your full name embroidered on tape in sufficient quantity to sew upon your belongings. Marking your "goods and chattels" helps identify ownership, for things somehow get fearfully mixed up in a boys' camp.

A clever scheme for locating lost articles was adopted by one large camp. A "Lost and Found" shop was opened. Articles found were brought to the shop. Hours for identification and reclaiming were announced, the owner paying two cents for each article claimed. This method had the effect of making the boys more systematic and less careless in throwing things around, or leaving them upon the ground after a ball game or play. After a certain length of time, an auction was held of all unclaimed articles. The money received was put into books for the camp library.

Write it Down

Make your "check list" during the winter. Have an old box handy in which to put things you think you will want to take to camp. Boys usually talk over the experiences of the last camp until about January 1st, then they begin to talk and plan about the next camp. As you think of things jot them down in a little memorandum book marked "Camp Ideas." Leaders will find this plan especially helpful. In making up the list, put down each article on a separate line. Don't jumble things together. Leave nothing to memory which, alas, too fre

quently is a splendid "forgetter." Write it down on paper. Examine your list very carefully, and strike out everything you can do without. Simplicity coupled with comfort should be the guide in making up the list or inventory. Tack the list on the inside of your trunk or camp box. Often the little trifles prove the most valuable things on a camping trip. For instance, a supply of giant safety pins is invaluable for pinning blankets together in sleeping-bag fashion. Ever roll out of your blankets or toss them off on a cool night? If so, you know the value of a giant safety pin.

What to pack the outfit in and how to pack it is a problem which each must solve for himself. A cracker box, with hinged cover, padlock, and rope handles, is good for a short-time camping trip. It should be of the following dimensions: 30 x 18 x 15 inches.

[Illustration: Camp Box]

A good strong steamer trunk is about the best thing. It is convenient, easy to handle, and takes up very little space.

The boys who are mechanically inclined, will want to have the fun of making a camp box. The illustration is a suggestion successfully worked out by a number of boys. The dimensions may be determined by the maker. Don't make it too big, or it will be a burden and also occupy too much room in the tent. It stands upright and serves as a dresser. Boys who spend a summer in camp should have either a steamer trunk or this dresser.

If the trunk or box is too small to carry blankets, a good plan is to roll blankets, bedding and such articles in a roll or canvas, the ends and sides of which are doubled inward, so as to prevent articles from dropping out or getting wet. Strap with a good shawl or strong rope. (See illustration.)

[Illustration: Blanket Roll.]

A dunnage[1], duffle, or carry-all bag is sometimes used for packing, but there is a possibility of a "mess" as well as a loss of your good disposition and patience in trying to locate some desired article.

Carry your poncho to be used in case of rain en route.

[Transcriber's Footnote 1: Personal baggage.]


Have your expressman deliver your baggage at the station at least one hour before the train starts. If the baggage is delayed, much annoyance and loss of temper is the result. If the camp is a large one, some one should be designated to look after the baggage arrangements. After checking the baggage, this person should receive checks and attend to claiming baggage at destination.

Many of the large camps provide mucilaged labels or "stickers" to paste on the end of the trunk or box making identification easy at railroad baggage room. Initials and camp number should be painted on outside of trunk or box.


"A place for everything and everything in place" should be the real key to find things in your trunk. Neatness is good discipline for the mind, and should characterize every real camper. The trunks of some boys in camp look as if a cyclone had struck them. "Full, pressed down, and running over." Every old thing in any old way is both slovenly and unhygienic.

About once a week everything should be taken from the trunk or box, and exposed to the sun. Let the sun also get into the trunk or box. Then repack neatly. This will prevent mould and dampness, and be the means of discovering lost articles. Finally be sure to go over with care your "check list" or inventory the day before camp breaks. This will prevent rushing around excitedly at the eleventh hour, hunting lost articles.


Gray and khaki are the most inconspicuous colors for camping.

Shirts should be provided with breast pockets.

Each lock should have a duplicate key to be given to the tent leader, or in a large camp, to the camp banker.

Have an old laundry bag in which to put soiled clothes. "Wash day" is a popular day in many camps. No camper need be dirty when there is abundance of water.

There is a luxuriance in a piece of soap and a clean towel that only experienced campers can understand and appreciate.

Wet towels, swimming suits or tights should not be placed in the trunk or box, but hung upon a rope, or non-rust wire outside of the tent.

The poncho is the camper's friend. It makes a good rubber blanket, a wrap, a cushion, a bag, a sail or a tent.

Be sure to take enough bed clothes. You will need them on cold nights.

Stamps wiped over the hair of your head will not stick together-the oil of the hair does the trick. Take a self-filler fountain pen-no glass filler to break.

A small Williams or Colgate shaving stick box, with screw or hinged cover, makes a good match box. A better one is a water-tight hard rubber box, with screw top. If dropped into a lake or stream it will float, whereas a metal box will sink.

Some one has said that "Good temper is as necessary for camping as water is for swimming." Be sure it is on your "check list."

[Illustration: Personal Labels]

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