Camping in Rain: What To Do When the Heavens Open

Camping in Rain: What To Do When the Heavens Open

Nothing ruins a camping trip faster than a little bit of rain.  If you are ever unfortunate enough to have had rain interrupt a family camping trip you know that staying dry is only half the battle – managing your children’s morale is really the ultimate goal.

Unless you are camping in the Arizona deserts, there is a decent chance that camping in rain could be a potential problem when on your next family trip. Here are a few tips for dealing with inclement weather, both back at base camp as well as any excursions like hiking, biking, and boating.

Have a Backup Plan

I can’t stress this enough.  Every vacation should have a backup plan.  Things go wrong, even if it doesn’t involve the weather, and when they do – well, look out. If you are on a family camping trip, staying in a tent, research local hotels or motels, just so you know you have a fallback option.  Planning an outdoor excursion for the day? Well you’d better have an indoor option lined up as well.  If your kids are expecting a fun filled afternoon, they just won’t respond well to rain ruining their fun. Hope for the best, plan for the worst, as the saying goes.

Bring an Umbrella

I know this might sound like a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised how many times a family starts their activities for the day, forgets an umbrella and has to show up soaking wet back at the car.  This is an instance where a little preparation can go a long way.  Even if the forecast doesn’t call for showers, pack a few ponchos and an umbrella in a bag.  It’s not a lot of extra weight and will get your family out of some tight jams. So many parts of the world – Northern Europe, the Pacific Northwest, amongst others – are prone to rapid weather change, and who wants to obsess about the weather predictions anyway? Put it in your bag and leave it there, even if you’re in one of the sunniest places in the world.

Don’t be a Hero

I can’t even begin to tell you how many times my dad used these words…”It’s only a little bit of rain” or “it will blow over soon” only to have our family stuck in the middle of a crazy rain storm where spirits quickly turned sour.  I’m not saying to run at the first sign of trouble, but the purpose of a family vacation is to have fun, not to play a guessing game with Mother Nature. If there is any chance of bad weather, listen to your gut and go to your backup plan when it suits.  Sometimes it’s better to be safe than sorry.

Hope for Rainbows

If you follow these steps, you can salvage your trip, even when the rain just won’t let up.  Hopefully, you never have to get stuck camping in rain, but if you’re reading this, chances are you’ve gotten drenched at least once before. Here’s to hoping it never happens again, or if it does, you at least get rewarded with a nice rainbow!

Photo Credit: longhorndave

Camping in Rain: What To Do When the Heavens Open

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