When we plan to spend some time in nature, the goal is to ease the mind and relax, but that doesn’t mean that we should go unprepared. That means that we should pack everything we might need but also inform ourselves on some basic camping topics, like how to keep bears away from our food, which is the topic we will discuss further.
Use the nearby tree to hang the bag with food
The great thing about camping is that we can find a lot of tall trees around, and the bears are not so thrilled about climbing them, which can be perfect for keeping our food safe from them. All we need to do is choose a tree that is about 100 yards from our tent, choose a branch that is high and strong enough to hold the weight of the bag, and hang it. It should be waterproof because the weather in the woods can change rapidly, and it needs to be perfectly closed to keep the smell inside.
The best way to hang the bag is to climb the tree and make sure it is well attached to a branch, but if you are not a big fan of heights, you can find some stick and use it to lift the bag to the desired branch. Overall, this technique is the most popular among backpackers all across the world, as it’s a simple yet highly effective way to preserve food, but in a way that all parties involved, including bears, are safe. Using bear canisters can be of much help here, and if you want to learn more about their importance and overall efficiency, check here and get all the info you might seek.
Do not leave the leftovers
Each camper should know that we are just the guests in nature and we need to leave everything just the same as we found once we get there. Although crumbs and some tiny pieces of food are not dangerous as they would decompose quickly, we need to make sure to clean everything up because they would surely attract many unwanted guests. The sense of smell in wild animals is more pronounced than in us, and even if we think our leftovers do not smell that intense, wild animals will smell them without a problem. Because of that, it is crucial to dispose of all the leftovers properly, and even throwing them into the trashcan is not a good idea. Instead of doing that, it is a much better solution to put them in a bag and take them with you when leaving a campsite which is where, once again, a bear canister can be of much help.
On the other hand, preserving nature is also something you should keep in mind while spending time outdoors, as people often tend to leave cans, bottles, plastic bags, etc., which, needless to say, is bad for our environment. Besides the fact that these things are harmful to nature, they can also represent a threat to wild animals, which is why cleaning and picking everything before you leave is of vast importance.
Prepare the food away from the camp
Now, this tip is reserved for those who like and prefer preparing food in nature, and since that’s a vast majority of campers and backpackers, this should be something of a must. Namely, since bears are sensitive sniffers and can detect food miles away, preparing any dish close to the tent and your camping site is not a good idea. The smell will definitely attract wild animals, at least to check what’s going on, and since this is not something any camper wants, make sure to prepare your meals at least 50 yards away from the site. By doing that and by keeping leftovers in specific camping bags and canisters, the time spent camping should not be disturbed by any unwanted visitors.
Make sure to store the clothes properly
If we want to enjoy the complete camping experience, we need to gather around the fire, tell a few stories, and prepare some food surrounded by nothing but nature. The food prepared at the campsite always has a much better taste, but it is important to be careful and follow some safety rules, or we can easily end up with a few unexpected guests at dinner. The first thing is to check where it is allowed to light the fire as each national park has different rules, so it is necessary to read them before deciding to light the fire and prepare food.
Of course, the garbage needs to be disposed of properly, and it is a universal rule for any national park, but also something that should be common practice even in places where there is no such rule and policy. The clothes we wear while cooking need to be stored like food because they will smell exactly the same, and since the bears are attracted to smell, they will not see the difference. They should never be put into the tent and need to be changed right after cooking and stored in bags that would keep the smell inside, and one of the best ideas is to hang them on the tree.
Take good care of your pets
Okay, this is not because the pets might end up as a bear lunch, as it is more about safety in general, as just like you shouldn’t eat near the camping site and your tent, you should also not feed your pets near the site. It might seem like a way too precautious measure, but when in the wilderness, we simply need to treat our pets like human beings, and every precautionary measure we take, our pets should take too, including the place reserved for meals. Another crucial thing is to keep the pets on a leash at all times because, even though this might seem cruel, when you consider everything that might happen by releasing them to explore nature and all possible dangerous situations and complications, it’s better to keep everyone safe by keeping them on a leash.