Showing posts with label camping. Show all posts
Showing posts with label camping. Show all posts

The Napier Sportz Truck Tent 57 Series Review

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As we age it becomes more difficult to sleep on the ground.  For those who love tent camping, there is a solution to this problem.... Napier SportzTruck Tent 57 Series.  This tent allows the camper to sleep in their truck bed which eliminates the need to stoop down in order to enter and exit your tent.
Truck Tent, Napier Truck Tent, Napier Sportz Truck Tent
Napier Sportz Truck Tent 57 Series Side View
Truck Tent, Pickup Truck Tent, Napier Truck Tent
Napier Sportz Truck Tent 57 Series Side View
The Napier 57 Series Sportz Truck Tent is an awesome three season tent that sleeps two.  The rain fly and walls are  constructed from 1200 mm PU polyester taffeta.  The floor is made from 1200 mm PU nylon taffeta.  There are two interior gear pockets with a gear loft that can be used for extra storage space.  With a center height of 5'5" there is enough head room for pretty much anyone.  The rear window is placed in a manner to offer access to the cab of your pickup through the rear hatch window.

The description on this tent says it can be set up in as little as ten minutes; however, I can tell you attempting to assemble this tent in the dark for the first time it will most definitely take much longer than that.  On the other hand, taking the tent down and packing it away is a really simple task.  If you are going to be out and about in the vehicle that the tent will be set up in, consider setting the tent up in advance so that when you arrive back at your camping spot for the night you can simply pick up the tent, slide it into your truck bed and strap it down.  This will save you an enormous amount of trouble.

Napier SportzTruck Tent 57 Series

Napier SportzTruck Tent 57 Series
"The Napier SportzTruck Tent 57 Series allows you to
sleep comfortably protected in the bed of your pickup.
Its shock-corded, color coded Durawrap fiberglass and
steel poles allow for fast set up in asittle as 10 minutes."

Although setting this tent up for the first time presented its challenges, I have to assume that the biggest reason for this is that my wife and I attempted to pull this off well after dark when both of us were already tired.  I'm quite certain that the next time we set it up will yield a completely different result.  Upon examining the Napier Sportz Truck Tent during the day I could see that is really is a simple tent to set up.

The overnight temperatures were in the mid forties when my wife and I used our tent, and we were able to sleep comfortably on an air mattress inside of our sleeping bag.  Unlike some tents that claim to be "three season," this one truly is!  We had no trouble staying warm inside of this well built tent.

One thing I will say is that if your truck is lifted, you will definitely want to come up with a step system for getting into your tent.  You could probably use a two-foot step ladder or cinder blocks.  Our method was to simply stack up some firewood and use it as our step to get inside. 

Keep in mind that there are several different models of this tent designed to fit many different truck bed sizes.  Be sure to find the right one for your truck.

I was pleasantly surprised at the overall quality of this tent.  With proper care this tent will provide the use with many years of use.

- Any day in the outdoors is a good day

Beaver Dam State Park Illinois

The Beaver Dam State Park is located seven miles to the south and west of Carlinville in Macoupin County in west-central Illinois and offers an abundance of recreational activities.  Named for the beaver dam that actually created the parks lake, The Beaver Dam State Park encompasses 750 acres and offers camping, fishing, hiking and numerous other exciting activities.

There is an archery range located inside the campground allowing individuals to brush up on their hunting skills while enjoying the peaceful surroundings.  This archery range does not allow the use of broad heads so be sure to bring your field tips.

The Beaver Dam State Park offers both camper and tent camping sites.  Most of the campsites offered here are first come first served, however there are 40 pads which may be reserved by visiting the Reserve America website.

The Beaver Dam State park offers fishing in its 59 acre lake.  With 1.7 miles of shoreline, a free public boat launch and dock there is plenty of space for visitors to sprawl out and catch some fish.    This lake has been stocked with largemouth bass, channel catfish, sunfish and blue gill.  Boats powered by gasoline motors are not permitted; however, you may use a trolling motor.  This would be an excellent place to do some kayaking for fish!

There are nearly eight miles of hiking trails circling the lake and sprawling throughout the vast wooded areas within the park.  Be sure to avoid dehydration while hiking with your Sawyer water treatment bottle.

The Beaver Dam State Park offers spring turkey, squirrel and archery deer hunting as well as furbearer trapping during the allotted seasons.  For more information on the west-central hunting and trapping seasons check out the Illinois DNR website. 

Winter Activities:
Weather permitting, the Beaver Dam State Park offers the opportunity for ice fishing, ice skating cross country skiing and sledding.

Whatever you preferred outdoor activity, you are sure to find the Beaver Dam State Park suitable for your next adventure.

If you enjoyed this post, you may also like Truman State Park Missouri.

- Any day in the outdoors is a good day

Camping Etiquette - Minding Your Manners In Campgrounds

Sunset, sunset over water, water sunset
Sunset on the water

While camping in our nations campgrounds, it is important to respect your fellow campers.  Listed below are a few rules to live by to ensure everyone has a pleasant experience.

  • Respect other campers sites.  Do not just go walking through the camp sites of your neighboring campers.  
  • Follow the rule for quiet time.  There comes a point in the evening when it is time to quiet down and just relax.  Your camping neighbors will appreciate you for this and you will appreciate your neighbors being quiet as well.
  • Don't turn your radio up so loud that the entire campground has to listen to your music.  Not everyone wants to hear it.
  • Make sure that your campfire is completely out before you leave your camp site.
  • Be sure your any food is put up at night in coolers or in a vehicle....somewhere that it will not become a temptation for the wildlife.  Animals can become used to gaining easy access to food and will begin to hang around causing a disturbance to yourself and others camping in the area.
  • Always dispose of your grey water in the designated areas provided by the campground.
  • When leaving the campground, make sure it is as clean or better yet a little more clean than when you showed up to begin your camping adventure. Clean up all your trash.
By following these few tips, you will ensure that you and your fellow campground neighbors all have a good time.

If you like this post, you may also like:
Tips & Tricks For Wilderness Camping

-Any day in the outdoors is a good day

Tips & Tricks For Wilderness Camping

There is nothing like escaping from the electronic world and nothing makes this easier than primitive wilderness camping.  The U.S. offers some amazing places to take advantage of these opportunities.  You can locate your dream wilderness camping area by visiting the U.S. National Park Service website.

Because you will most likely be hiking in to your camping spot, you will want to pack light carrying only the necessities.  Some of the items to pack include but are not limited to the following.
  • Lightweight tent:  Your tent will provide you with shelter from the elements as well as ensuring you have a safe place to sleep at night.  The tent of choice should be a high-quality, lightweight tent.
  • Lightweight sleeping bag:  Your sleeping bag will help to keep you warm at night.  Select a tent that will keep you warm in your chosen camping environment.
  • Sharp knife:  A knife has multiple uses when camping and should be kept sharp.   Accidents are much more likely to occur when using a dull knife.
  • Ground mat:  A ground mat will put a bit of padding between your sleeping bag and the hard ground beneath you.
  • Lighter or Water-proof matches:  It is imperative that you have a method to start a fire in order to prevent hypothermia as well as having a source for cooking food.
  • Warm clothes:  Other than a fire, warm clothing is the best method of preventing hypothermia.
  • Water source:  Because there is likely to be no clean water source in the wilderness, you will need to carry your water supply with you.  
  • Maps:  Even the most seasoned wilderness camper will find maps useful at times.  No-one is capable of knowing every inch of wilderness.
  • Compass:  A compass will come in handy if you do find it necessary to use your map(s) to find your way around.
  • Flashlight:  The need for a flashlight is pretty self explanatory.  Nights in the wilderness can be pitch-black.  If you should find it necessary to move around in the dark you will be glad you packed one.
  • Spare batteries:  What good is your flashlight if the batteries go dead?  Be sure to pack enough spare batteries to see you through your entire adventure.
  • First aid kit:  As much as we don't like to admit it, accidents can and do happen.  In the unfortunate event of an accident happening to you or someone else in your camp, you will want to be prepared to take care of the wound(s) that may result.
  • Eating utensils:  Unless you are eating out of cans you will need something to put your food on and the silverware necessary to eat.  Heavy duty plastic eating utensils are a good choice or you can purchase a folding metal set that is self contained.
  • Trash bag:  Always make sure that you leave your camping area in better condition than you found it in.  This means picking up your trash and even picking up any litter you may see laying around the area you are visiting.  Together we can keep our wilderness clean!
  • Backpack:  A good backpack is a must for carrying all of your supplies on your journey into the great unknown.  Be sure to select a backpack that is both big enough and rugged enough to stow all your gear inside.
Be sure you arrive at your destination in time to set up your base camp during daylight hours.  It is much more difficult to pitch a tent and prepare your site in the dark.  Beginning your adventure in the dark will also run down the batteries in your flashlight.  Be sure to set your tent up on a flat surface.  You may consider placing it under a tree for added shade when the weather is hot or place it in a spot where the sun will shine on it throughout the day when the weather is cool.  This will help you control the climate of your sleeping area.  Make sure there are no rocks or sticks on the ground where your tent will be situated.

Taking daily hikes from your base camp to areas of interest will ensure that you have more than enough to keep you from becoming bored while hanging out in the middle of nowhere.  Make sure that you clean up your camp area before leaving.  You may even want to consider carrying your food supplies with you on your daily hikes to keep wild animals from wandering into your chosen space.  Nothing would be worse than returning from a hike only to find your tent torn to shreds and your camping gear rendered useless by a bear or some other opportunistic creature (except maybe coming face to face with the unsuspecting beast).  Using your common sense will prevent any unwanted circumstances from taking place during your stay in the wilderness.

Remember this trip is being planned to be a relaxing and fun while you are away from the daily grind.  Make sure you have everything you need before leaving your home.  Use your common sense to keep yourself and the other people with you out of danger.  Most importantly enjoy yourself and the company of the people who go with you.

If you like this post, you may also like:
Camping Etiquette - Minding Your Manners In Campgrounds

-Any day in the outdoors is a good day