Memorial day kicks off boating and camping season. For many hams that means getting out of the shack and going portable. Both activities are fun as long as you are safe about it.
Do a little planning before going out. If you are going to an area that you are not familiar with or have never been, do a quick search online for a map. Most state and national parks have a website and maps. While you are there, check out the rules of the parks. Here in Florida, most parks don’t allow you to put anything in the trees. Also, check if you are able to bring your own firewood. More and more parks require you to buy you wood from them to prevent the spread of disease.
Check the weather forecast for the area you are going. Rain is not the only thing you want to look for, the temperature is just as important. The last trip I was on that was cut short was do to heat. It reached in the low 100’s with around 80% humidity and my family was absolutely miserable. After 1 night and most of the next day we packed it up and vowed never to go camping in August here in Florida again.
Proper footwear and attire can make a big impact on how enjoyable a trip is. I like to wear my work boots which are like hiking boots. The key is footwear with proper support. Bring a pair of cheap rubber flip flops. Wear these while using the bath house, the shower floors are not the most sanitary surfaces. A light long sleeve shirt is helpful in the evening when the bugs come out.
Camp fires and cooking fires can be very dangerous. Know all of the rules about fires for the location you are using. Only build fires in designated areas. Remove any leaves or debris around your fire pit. After cooking over your fire, clean the grill grates and get food particles off. If left, on this can attract unwanted wildlife.
These are just a few of many safety tips. Below are a few websites that have a lot of good information. Give them a look and Stay Safe!