Five Items That Saved My Camping Trip in the Canadian Rockies

Jasper Road

The following guest post is brought to you by Adina Marguerite Pease.

My most recent adventure over the border to the Canadian Rockies did not exactly go as planned. The first day went something like this: arrive at expensive campsite – which actually looked more like a mud pit. Stand under power lines at campsite to look for a new place to stay and notice skin vibrating. Give up, change plans on the fly, get in the car and drive until spotting another campsite – three hours later. Set up camp in the dark while fighting ridiculous winds. Come face to face with giant black widow spider in camp washroom.

That first day set the bar in terms of hurdles to be jumped on the duration of the trip. While nothing ever got quite as rough as that first day – it also wasn’t nearly as smooth of a trip as the other times I’ve been camping in the Canadian Rockies. Luckily, I’m a bit of an over preparer and happened to bring a couple of key items that unexpectedly saved the trip.

the wool blanket
The wool blanket.

1. Wool Blanket

Checking the weather before our trip, I expected highs of 85° F and lows of 50° F at night. So the wool blanket only made it’s way into the car for emergency purposes. On our first night in Jasper National Park, the temperatures dropped to freezing and the only thing that really kept the heat in was the wool blanket. Not even a down mummy bag and heavy cotton sleep bag on top could keep me toasty enough. From now on, whenever I go camping that wool blanket is making it into the car.

Must pack items.

2. Jersey Knit Infinity Scarf

By far the most versatile item I brought on the trip was a simple jersey knit infinity scarf. This scarf served me well outside of its normal purpose to cover my eyes during mid-day naps, my ears on cold and windy hikes, and my head from over zealous mosquitoes. Finally, I’ll admit to also putting it around my rather sparsely haired pup’s neck and ears to keep her warm around the campfire.

3. Hanging Toiletries Kit

After that experience with the black widow spider, you could say I got rather paranoid about where I placed my toiletry kit in camp washrooms. Fortunately, my toiletry kit has this great little hook on the top that lets it hang off of just about anything. Including the nice slippery walls of a washroom stall. My anxiety of more black widow encounters was significantly reduced by not having to put my kit on the floor or hang it in some dank spider friendly area.

ferry dock

4. Yoga Pants

Not that I did any yoga on this trip (or for that matter ever), but I packed two comfy pairs of these stretchy black pants – anticipating using them for long drive days. With that unexpected temperature drop, I ended up using them instead as pajamas to wear to bed and around camp. Originally I had assumed it would be warm enough to wear shorts for these purposes – so thank goodness for those multi-purpose yoga pants.

5. Hand Moisturizer

In addition to the cold and despite all the rain, the air was incredibly dry in the Canadian Rockies. Add in cooking camp food, washing dishes, and all the general hand washing that goes on and my hands were just about the driest they’ve ever been. A strong hand moisturizer with shea butter saved me from completely cracking all the skin on my knuckles.

About the Author: Adina Marguerite Pease is a travel and food writer, photographer, and beginning videographer based out of Seattle, Washington. She shares her adventures traveling and eating gluten free on her blog, Gluten Free Travelette. You can also find her on Instagram, sharing photos of her pup, and Twitter, generally working to incite wanderlust.

Add your voice & leave a comment!

Gear We Use

Organization

Packing Cubes – Organize your luggage with the lightweight, durable and compressible Eagle Creek Pack-It Specter Compression Cubes.


Backpacks + Daypacks

Pacsafe – Since they come with extra theft-resisting features, Pacsafe bags make you a more confident traveler. We especially love this bag.

Sea to Summit – Of all the Sea to Summit products, our most recommended is the fits-in-your-palm, super packable Ultra-Sil Daypack.


Personal Care

Nalgene Toiletry Bottles – These leak-free toiletry bottles and tubs come in all sizes – even super tiny, helping minimalists pack it all without bulk.

Turkish Towels – They’re thinner than most travel towels, and they actually cover your body! We can’t get enough of Turkish towels for travel.


Clothing

Speakeasy Supply Co. – They make the awesome hidden pocket infinity scarves that are perfect for stashing secret cash, lip balms, and passports.

Anatomie – Anatomie travel pants come with luxury prices, but they offer many benefits for travelers. See our review of the famous Skyler pants.

Travel Resources

Booking Airfare

Dollar Flight Club – Get flight deal alerts for your preferred departure airport. There is both a free and premium version (recommended for more sweet deals). Members save on average $500 USD per flight!

Skyscanner – Skyscanner is our preferred site for searching flights. They offer unbiased search results and are free from hidden fees. You can also book your hotels and rental cars.


Accommodation

Airbnb – Airbnb is the best place to book out apartments around the world. Sign up using this link to get $37 USD off your first stay booking + $14 USD towards an experience booking!

Booking.com – Search for hotels, hostels, and apartments using this one resource. Use it for flights, car rentals, and airport taxis as well.

Hostelworld – For hostels, Hostelworld remains our number one source for booking stays. Choose from straight up hostels, budget hotels and bed and breakfasts.

Trusted Housesitters – Save money on travel accommodation by becoming a housesitter. Housesitters often have extra duties, like caring for pets and gardens.

Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. Dianne says

    Good list and highlights a cardinal rule of camping – be prepared for temps. to be higher or lower than predicted and always be ready for the unexpected. I’ve been looking for a hanging toiletries kit, thanks for the nudge. Good post.

Leave A Reply