BOAT BASED CAMPING
Of all the camping and adventure trips I do I think boat based camping is the most enjoyable. I'm not entirely sure why but I think it is because to me there is a greater sense of freedom in a boat, there is no road to follow, you can often camp on river banks and lake shores where you simply can't get to unless you have a boat. I do a lot of boat based camping but every year I really look forward to the trip I do with a couple of good mates and my two uncles. Three boats and four days on the Murray River in a beautiful stretch of river between Wentworth and lock number 9 is simply camping heaven. The river up there is wide, the water clean and usually the fishing very good. We tend to break camp each day and motor along the river until we find a nice sandbar to camp on. We then set about having our own daily fishing competition. Bragging rights last 24 hours until weigh in the following night and then an overall winner has the year to dine out on his win until next years trip.
Camping in a boat requires a slightly different way of packing compared to four wheel drive based touring or camping. Space and weight are at a premium so you have to think smart and small and only take the bare necessities.
Here is a list of the things (excluding the legal requirements for a boat) that I take on a boat based camping trip with two in the boat.
- Fuel. Know your boats fuel usage and take enough fuel for your trip.
- Crashpad swags for sleeping.
- A small stool each. They fold flat, are very light and take up next to no room.
- A fridge. Admittedly this is a luxury, my boat has two batteries so I can run a fridge. In reality an ice chest is all you need. Use big blocks of ice down the bottom to increase the melt time and keep it in the shade as best as possible.
- A small kitchen box. This is set up just for two people, two plates, cups, bowls etc.
- A small fold up shovel.
- A 'Crashmat' multi-use ground sheet. This can be used as a shade awning or protection from the elements in inclement weather.
- A small chainsaw, once again this is a luxury but it certainly does making getting a nice fire going that little bit easier.
- Food for the trip.
- Drinking water.
- A few tools and spare parts in the event of a breakdown.
- Fishing gear.
It just proves that you don't need a lot of gear to have maximum fun. So if you have a boat, grab a mate or two and hit the water for a boat based camping trip. I guarantee you it won't be your last.