The Essential Backyard Campout Safety Checklist
This is Part II of my series on camping in your own backyard.
When camping with children in your backyard, it is important to know how to keep everyone safe. Even though you are in familiar territory, it is surprisingly easy to experience mishaps. If you prepare correctly, you can keep these to a minimum. Plus, following safety protocols is the smart things to do. If your kids are old enough, you can review them together and have them help you prepare. It can be a fun learning experience for the entire family. Below are some basic tips to consider. I encourage you to do some research to help you prepare your family for fun in the backyard!
Essential Backyard Camping Safety Checklist
- Use common sense while camping, especially if you have a campfire.
- Have the proper equipment and tools (see my post Must-Haves for Backyard Camping for details).
- Chose a safe campsite (a flat spot free of large obstacles like rocks and tree stumps)
- Keep potentially dangerous items out of the reach of children (matches, knives, insect repellent)
- Learn about and teach children about campfire safety if you plan to have one (a good resource is SmokeyBear.com)
- Teach children to stay within eyesight or earshot.
- Respect wildlife. Never approach or touch wild animals, use a camera instead.
- Be aware of your surroundings and watch where you step.
- Pay attention to weather conditions.
- Do not leave children alone at the campsite.
- Have first aid essentials available in the house.
- If you are sleeping outside for the night, put all food away in the house before going to sleep to avoid attracting animals to the campsite.
- Remember to be prepared for the unexpected, do not take unnecessary chances.
- Supervise your children at all times!
Many of these are intuitive, especially for moms, but it doesn’t hurt to do a quick review once in a while. My goal in writing this was to provide an exhaustive list, but I am sure I have missed a few important points. If you would like to add your thoughts, please do so in the comments section.