I’ve spent the day hiking with a group, especially on a gorgeous fall day, only to have the hike draw to a close and at least one hiker bemoan the fact they had to abandon the woods and head home.
No you don’t, I’d say. Camp and stay the night!
Inevitably, a series of weak excuses would follow. I don’t want to carry all that gear. I don’t like sleeping on the ground and being uncomfortable. I don’t even have the gear.
The retorts were easy. You only have to carry the gear from your car to the tent pad — maybe 20 feet. Modern car camping is all about comfort, including sleeping on a thick air mattress that lets you blow better Zs that your thousand-dollar mattress at home. As for the gear … well, they had a point there. And shelling out big bucks for an endeavor you might not like, well, I couldn’t argue with that. At least, I couldn’t then.
But I can now.
Now, you no longer have to make a big investment to see if camping is for you. Now, there’s GetCamping!
Rent before you buy
You can test drive a car, why not a tent? And sleeping pads, and rockin’ (literally) camp chairs, and a stove, and cooking utensils, and a hammock and — well, all the key pieces of camping equipment. Our new GetCamping! program, created in conjunction with our partners at Great Outdoor Provision Co., gives you all the camping specific gear you need. Here’s how the program works:
If you have some camping experience or simply are good at figuring things out, just rent the kit. We’ll make arrangements for pickup, typically between noon and 2 p.m. on the Friday preceding your weekend camping trip, and will include instructions on how everything works. As for the stuff you’ll need for camping that’s not in your kit, you probably already have it. Sign up and you’ll also receive a list of appropriate household substitutes for the other stuff you’ll need (bedding, for instance). Here’s what’s included in the GetCamping! kit:
- Tent. Shelter is key. Our kit includes the 6-person Kaiju 6 tent from The North Face. It provides plenty of room for sleeping, even hanging out. The tent includes a covered entryway and a rainfly to keep you protected from the occasional sprinkle. It’s also well-vented to make sure you sleep through the night with a pleasant supply of fresh air.
- Air mattress. The big complaint about camping: I don’t want to sleep on the ground. With the ExPed inflatable sleeping pad, you’ll sleep on a thick cushion of air. Nearly as restful as your designer mattress back home.
- Camp chairs. Face it, part of the appeal of camping is the opportunity to sit and relax — for extended periods. And that’s possible with the GCI Fireside Rocker, a camp chair that captures the magic of your favorite recliner, but that can be toted from the campsite to the lake to an overlook for sunset. Two GCI Fireside Rockers are included with each kit.
- Hammock. Take your relaxation to the next step, the nap step, with a camp hammock from Eno.
- Tarp. A tarp provides an extra layer of insulation and protection for your tent floor.
- Lights. Just because the sun calls it a day doesn’t mean you have to. We supply you with a Black Diamond Spot headlamp to help you navigate the night, as well as a UST 30-Day Duro LED lantern to light your campsite.
- Kitchen. Even if you’re just warming up meals brought from home, you’ll need cooking gear. Our kit includes a Primus two-burner propane stove (including gas canister), and a Sea 2 Summit Alpha CookSet.
Still not sold? Worried about all the set-up and break-down, and simply how to make your camp hum? We also offer the kit with a concierge service: for an added fee, your camp will be set up and waiting for you when you arrive and will be broken down and put away after you leave. Plus, you’ll have access to a GetCamping! campground host should you have questions.
We take every precaution to make sure the kit you receive is clean and safe. Here’s our protocol:
- When a kit is returned from being used, it’s kept in quarantine for three days.
- After three days, each piece of equipment is cleaned with a disinfectant approved by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for use against SARs-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID 19. We wear gloves when cleaning the gear and let each piece air dry. We then use gloves to repack the gear into the GetHiking! Camp Kit, for the next user. In the case of the Concierge Service, the gear is assembled by your glove-wearing GetCamping! host.
Like it, buy it!
If you love camping and the gear you’ve rented, you can buy the same package new from Great Outdoor Provision Co., with your rental fee applying toward the purchase price!
Fall is the perfect time to camp. Warm (but not hot) days are great for exploring or just lolling around camp, the cool evenings are great for sleeping. And right now, being outdoors is about the safest place you can be. If you’ve been hankering to travel but hesitant because of the risk, camping is the perfect escape.
Best of all, if you’re a hiker, there’s likely a trail just outside your tent door. When you return from your hike, you’re already home.
GetCamping! Learn More
Ready to camp? Visit our GetCamping! page here and learn more about both our kit rentals and concierge service.