No family camping trip is complete without the practice of some popular camping traditions. Singing songs around the campfire, setting up tents, etc. are all camping traditions that are deeply-rooted in history. Make your next camping vacation one to remember by incorporating these fun camping traditions into your stay.
1. Setting up Tents
Staying in tents is not only an economical way to camp out – tents are a traditional dwelling that Native Americans used long before Europeans arrived. The tents that Native Americans used were known as Tipis. Tipi is a Sioux word for “dwelling.” The shape of Tipis allowed them to shed wind and rain. Nowadays, tents are far more compact and easier to carry around. The nights you and your family spend camped out in a tent while listening to the sounds of the night and going outside to admire the star-studded sky will become lasting memories.
2. Campfire Songs
Campfire songs are an oral tradition that cannot be traced back to a particular culture or time in history. Singing around the fire is a common practice across many different cultures and popular campfire songs have a variety of origins. The popular campfire song, “Home on the Range,” is Kansas’ state song while “Blow the Man Down” is a traditional sailor song from the 19th century. Some campfire songs even have spiritual significance. Both children and adults love to belt it out in front of a campfire. Bring a guitar, hand drums, and/or tambourines to make singing around the fire with your family even more fun. Only the crickets will hear you so it doesn’t matter if you don’t exactly qualify as a good singer, let loose and enjoy singing around the fire on your next camping trip.
3. Campfire Storytelling
While packing your tent, food, and everything else you need for your family camping trip, don’t forget to stock up on great campfire stories! Storytelling is a tradition in every culture of the world. Native Americans have been telling stories for thousands of years in North America. Telling stories around the campfire with your family will bring you closer together. Let your imagination run wild and make up your own stories or consult a great storybook and pick out the best stories you can find.
4. Making S’Mores
No one knows exactly where everyone’s favorite campfire treat originated but there was a recipe for a similar treat in the 1940 Girl Scout Handbook that was called “Some Mores.” Everyone in the family can enjoy this delicious sandwich cookie that consists of fire-roasted marshmallow, melted chocolate, and graham crackers.
5. Campfire Cooking
Whether you’re going to cook with a charcoal grill, dutch oven, campfire, or camping stove, making and sharing food with your family is a lovely tradition that shouldn’t be left out of any camping trip. Cultures around the world have different methods of outdoor cooking and in North America the Scouting movement and wilderness educators are excellent sources of information on the subject.