Which Clothes to Pack for Camping

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Camping can be fun, refreshing and rewarding. By following a few simple guidelines, you can pack the right items for a camping trip that will ensure your comfort as you settle in around the fire and crawl into the tent. No matter whether it's cold or warm, the right clothes will make all the difference.

Base-layer Clothing

Known as the base layer, the material worn against the skin in cold weather can double for pajamas or for daily wear. Synthetic material like polypropylene can wick moisture away from the skin, keeping you cool in summer and warm in winter. According to REI.com, layering allows you to make quick clothing adjustments based on the weather. Packing synthetic base layers is recommended.

Camp Wear

Around camp, you tend to get dirty. Having a designated pair of camp pants is worthwhile, especially if you are cooking, cutting wood or tending the fire. Choose a thick, durable pair of shorts or pants, and put them on as soon as you settle into camp. Also, keep extra undergarments handy. Changing out of dirty clothes is a good way to freshen up.

Hats and Gloves

Ear warmers, gloves and hats can add comfort on cool nights. Covering exposed skin is the first and best defense for the cold. During warmer months, well-ventilated shirts and shorts allow air to flow through them, providing a cooling effect.


Wind- and weather-resistant articles like jackets and outer layers should always get stuffed somewhere during the packing job. Look for lighter weight for back-packing and warmer months, as long as it can protect you from the elements. Gore-Tex, a breathable waterproof laminate available in some outer wear, will enhance the products' abilities to shed water far better than a spray-on chemical treatment, according to Spadout.com.

Camp Footwear

If possible, it's nice to have a few changes of footwear for camping. Heavier boots or hiking shoes can withstand long hikes, while lighter shoes are good for exploring close to camp. A pair of sandals or slip-on shoes is convenient for evenings around the fire and near the tent.