I finally get a couple of weeks off and am going camping – a great, traditional summer activity. Of course, some people cringe when they hear that word…”Camping”, but it doesn’t have to be as “rough” as people think. There are definitely varying levels of “roughing” it when camping:

Level 1 – Backpacker

Okay, so I definitely don’t define myself as a backpacker, the kind that can fit everything they need into one pack on their back. Skeleton sleeping bag, single burner propane stove, one foldable pot, dried and bagged meals and possibly a pup-tent. These burly-dudes can sleep just about anywhere and have no need for vault toilets.

Level 2 – Basic tent camper

Campers that bring a tent just large enough for their needs, which usually means crawling in on your hands and knees. Small stove, a sleeping bag, a few cooking items, one ice chest and they’re good to go. This is not my style of camping either, but getting close.

Level 3 –  Deluxe tent camper

This is more my speed  – a tent large enough to stand in and a footprint equally large enough to compartmentalize your needs (sleeping versus dressing areas). Double burner stove, chairs, plenty of bedding, an air mattress, generator to blow up the air mattress, bikes, two ice chests (one for drinks and another for food), and cooking supplies. Still stuck with porta-potties, but baby wipes and soap for your hands make it bearable.

Level 4 -Pop-Up Trailer

Once you’ve outgrown the large tent (because it’s a pain to put up!), you begin to lean toward pop-up trailer; it’s a combination of “tent” sleeping with the convenience of everything you need ready to go. Not only is it easy to haul around your camping supplies, but it’s a little “cleaner” in some respects since it’s lifted off the ground. We’ve been eying pop-up’s for a while now.

Level 5 -RV/Motor Home

Some might argue that this is not camping, but it’s easy to see why some people move from pop-up trailer to RV. Bring everything you need with you; TV, kitchen, bathroom (a lot of people are squimish about the porta-potties at campsites) with the luxury of electricity and hot water.

Level 3 is my current status of camping but I can see the benefit of moving to a level 4  – a little more convenient with less work.

Here’s a cute infographic about camping, similar to my “levels” but a little different. Enjoy! (click to see the whole infographic) What kind of camper are you?

7-Types of Campers
7-Types of Campers

Thanks to those that included me in a carnival this week:


  1. Eric J. Nisall Reply

    I’m definitely NOT a camper. I loved it when I was a kid and we’d have our annual trip to the Delaware River for whitewater rafting and a couple nights of camping. But now, I like the comforts of home–my bed, air conditioning, a full fridge and pantry, full size bathroom. Call it what you will, but aside from a bonfire with some beers I can do without the wilderness experience now.

  2. I guess I’m closest to a roughin it camper. I love allowing my eyes to adjust to the dark, the sounds of the night, and the cool breezes. I never sleep better than when I’m in a tent.

    This year, I’ve even put the tent up in the backyard a few times. Sure, my neighbors are probably laughing at me. But I don’t need air conditioning so I guess I’ll have the last laugh.

    BTW, I wasn’t raised camping. I went for the first time when I was traveling in Europe during college. I didn’t really start going on my own until my mid 30s. So who knows, maybe you have an inner camper waiting to get out and rough it a little more than you have so far. 🙂

    • @Pamela – I really enjoy camping. I’m fine getting a little dirty, but it’s nice to also take some comforting items along – like an air mattress!

  3. Crystal @ Prairie Ecothrifter Reply

    I actually talked two of my friends out of camping and into a hotel room this past weekend. It’s just too hot with too many bugs to deal with it here in Texas. But we stayed at a cheap hotel and tubed down the river during the day. Worked out great. 🙂

    • @Crystal – This particular trip, we ended up having a lot more bugs and critters than normal (lack of rain apparently makes them swarm!). If camping was as bug-invested as this last trip, I think I’d skip the tent and get a room as well. 😉

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