Car Camping… With Baby #KohlsCampGuide

by Kim on April 12, 2016 · 44 comments

This is a sponsored post but the views expressed here are my own.

It will probably come as no surprise that Brian and I have an insane amount of outdoor gear– enough gear for a 30,000 mile, 47-state camping road trip, but do we have enough gear to car camp with a baby?

Okay, the answer is yes, because, really, what does a baby need?

However, there are some pieces of gear that make camping with a baby a whole lot easier. (I’m assuming- this is a whole new world for me). Recently, Kohl’s asked if I would help share the word about their camping department and offered to send me some camping gear (and they let me pick it out, so that I could get exactly what I needed) and so, with visions of car camping with a baby in my head, I said, Yes! Thanks!

Also, guys, there’s something here for you too- so read on to the bottom for your chance to win.

We are so excited to introduce Juniper to the great outdoors. We have two camping trips planned in the next few months, including a weekend of camping at Hocking Hills State Park and a week of camping at Shenandoah National Park. We’re also headed to Asheville, NC to housesit and hike for 10 days, so we’ll be testing Juniper’s patience in a backpack soon, too.

car camping with baby

We found this baby backpack (it’s a Kelty) at a garage sale for $10. Score!

So, here’s what I selected from Kohl’s to use on our upcoming baby-camping adventures. Have you camped with a baby before? How did it go? Do you have any tricks to make it go smoothly?

Coleman DuraRest Plus Air Mattress

Camping with baby

Pre-baby, we slept on camp cots or ground pads. But since Juniper will be snuggling up between us in the tent, we wanted an air mattress big enough to fit all three of us. This Coleman air mattress is queen sized and fits in our 4-person tent perfectly. Instead of using sleeping bags we’ll bring along a sheet and blanket to keep us warm. Note: Obviously don’t put your very tiny baby on an air mattress. Juniper is big enough to move her head and roll, so I’m not concerned about sleep safety anymore.

Camping with baby

Another benefit of camping on an air mattress: Since having a baby my body feels about one billion years old so I can’t imagine how it would feel after a night of sleeping on the ground. Sleeping on an air mattress will give us a comfortable night of sleep- something I appreciate now like I never did before.

Wenzel Biscayne Screen House

Camping with baby

Mosquitos on the east coast are no joke and can easily ruin a camping trip with their biting and buzzing. This screen house is amazing, big enough to stand up in and it fits over a picnic table which will make eating meals and hanging out in general so much better. I’ve also heard rumors that the cicadas will be out this year (my personal hell) and if that is the case I will be hiding inside this screen house the entire time we’re camping.

camping with baby

Bonus: The screen house packs down quite small- important when you don’t have a ton of room in the car.

Coleman Pack-Away Compact Table

camping with baby

We already had two cute, lightweight, foldable camping tables but nothing tall or sturdy. We needed something high to keep food, drink, and everything on earth that the baby reaches for these days out of her hands, and this table fit the bill. It’s super easy to assemble (as Brian demonstrates above) and it packs down nice and small (as Brian demonstrates below).

camping with baby

Fiskars 14-in. Hatchet

Every baby needs their own hatchet, obviously! (Kidding!) This has nothing to do with babies but we didn’t have a hatchet and Brian likes to chop wood and pose like Paul Bunyan and you can’t do that without one.

camping with baby

Win a $50 Kohls gift card and buy your own camping gear!

Kohls has given me a $50 gift card to pass along to one of you! You can enter to win by 1) sharing this post on social media and 2) leaving a comment below. A winner will be randomly selected on April 19, 2016. Good luck and happy camping! UPDATE: Congratulations to the winner, Ashley! The giveaway is now closed. 

camping with baby

We’re ready for our first foray into the great outdoors as a party of 3.