Let’s face it! Summer’s great but not the bugs that come with it. From ticks and spiders to mosquitoes and bees, warm weather brings bugs that can ruin your outdoor fun. Not only are they annoying but having them around your campsite increases your odds of getting infected by deadly diseases. Young kids and the elderly are most at risk. And since the outdoors is where they live, encountering bugs is sort of inevitable. But luckily for you, there are some easy, precautionary steps you can take to avoid & deter pesky bugs, so you can enjoy the sunshine outside.
Follow this handy-dandy guide to find out how to avoid bugs while camping this summer.
1. Choose the Right Bug Spray
Bringing a bug spray is a must if you wish to avoid a bug-catastrophe on your next camping trip. But don’t just grab and buy one that you first see on the store shelf. We recommend buying a bug spray with 20 percent or more DEET. If you have sensitive skin, go for a bug spray that has Picaridin in it. It is a good alternative to DEET. Picaridin and IR3535-based products are known to provide long-lasting protection against a variety of bugs. Repel, Coleman Insect Repellant, Ben’s Tick & Insect Repellant and Off! are some of the best ones available in the market today. Keep in mind that the bug spray you choose should also depend on the type of insect you’re trying to ward off.
2. Choose the Right Campsite
The next thing you should do is choose the right campsite. Go online, search for the best camping sites, read their reviews and see if any previous camper had to deal with pesky bugs or not. We highly recommend opting for an area that gets good wind as the breeze will help blow bugs away. To keep insects like mosquitoes and Lyme- ticks at bay, you need to make sure that you steer clear of areas near bodies of water. Do your best to drain any standing water near your campsite before setting up. Choose a campsite that is placed away from small ponds, slow-moving streams, and swampy areas. And always remember to find a place that is “high and dry.”
Check out our blog post titled “5 Tips For Choosing The Right Campsite” to get more insight into this topic.
3. Choose the Right Tent
A double wall tent with an inner mesh body is the best one for a bug-free camping trip. Before you leave home, set up your tent and give it a thorough inspection. See if there are any rips or holes where the tiny critters might infiltrate. Make sure zippers zip up all the way and don’t leave any gaps. Repair your tent if you find any holes, no matter how small they are. Don’t eat or drink inside your tent. Always keep your tent flaps zippered and never keep food inside your tent. Also, avoid keeping a lantern or flashlight turned on for an extended period of time inside your tent.
4. Dress Appropriately
Instead of wearing tank tops, short sleeved shirts and shorts, it is better to opt for lightweight pants and long-sleeved shirts when outdoors during the summer. Keeping your skin covered is the best way to avoid getting bitten. That is why you should avoid exposing your skin. It’s also better if you choose to wear loose clothes because this will make it more difficult for them to reach your skin. Clothes with tightly woven fabrics are also great because bugs will find it difficult to get through them. Most insects and bugs, especially mosquitoes, are more attracted to darker colors. So, consider wearing lighter-colored clothing as it is known to be less attractive to bugs.
5. Always Leave Food Covered
The smell of foods attracts bugs. That’s why you should never leave food and fresh ingredients uncovered while you’re at the campsite. Bugs will generally leave your area alone if there is nothing for them to eat. Always keep all your food in sealed containers. After you finish eating, be sure to pick up and throw away any food scraps that might have fallen on the ground. A clean site is far less likely to attract unwanted critters and bugs. If you have leftovers, store everything in re-sealable bags and never leave them out in the open.
- Avoid sitting directly on the ground.
- Check for bugs on your clothing before getting in the tent.
- Treat the outside of your tent with permethrin.
- Do not use perfume or perfumed toiletries.
- For an extra line of defense, keep your campfire going 24/7.
We hope the tips we shared will help you protect yourself from bugs. Summer is all about fun and being outdoors. Don’t let a swarm of insects ruin your camping trip. And with a little bit of planning, you can keep bugs out and enjoy your camping experience to the fullest. So, the next time you go camping, be sure to follow these tips to avoid bugs and keep summer fun.
How do you keep your campsite bug free? Let’s hear about it in the comments below!