The first day of spring has passed, and camping season is on the way for those of us who hibernate in the winter months rather than brave the elements. While you’re thinking about where you’ll go for your first weekend campout, it’s also a good idea to think about doing a spring clean for your rig ahead of time instead of the night before your trip. Here is a starting list to get you into cleaning mode:
Start with tent and sleeping gear
When was the last time you opened up that rooftop tent? Or unpacked the Gazelle Hub Tent that got quickly shoved into its carry bag? Set up the rooftop tent in the driveway (or the ground tent in the yard) with the windows open and let it air out to let the fabric loosen up and musty or smoky smells dissipate. While you’re at it, sweep or vacuum the interior, wash the mattress fitted sheet/blankets/pillowcases, and air out sleeping bags. Everyone loves fresh sheets at home, and fresh bedding for camp is a great feeling too!
Review all non-perishable foods
Go through your food bin. It seems like a no-brainer, yet some of us will still end up on the trail needing a snack, and all we’ll have is a tooth-breaking granola bar that says ‘Chewy’ on the wrapper. A few things you can keep in mind here:
- Check the expiration dates. This one is easy and a baseline for reviewing food. Also, if you’re the type of person who likes to keep dehydrated meals on hand, remember that they have an expiration.
- Check for holes and leaks. It could be from bugs, rodents, or getting jumbled around, but make sure all packaging is intact.
- Check general integrity. Has anything hardened that shouldn’t be? Is anything crumbled?
- Review your leftovers. These items are likely the remnants from last year’s adventures. Are they just extras that stuck around? Are they items that will never be eaten and shouldn’t be purchased again? Think about why they didn’t get consumed when planning a re-stock.
Clean storage for water and perishables
Water and containers can quickly become a breeding ground for bacteria. Empty lingering water from storage containers and give them a good wash. After all last season's condensation and food remnants, your fridge also needs disinfecting. Give the interior of your vehicle fridge a cleaning with your favorite kitchen disinfectant, and prop open the lid to let it dry.
Charge up those batteries and devices
There’s nothing like that moment when you get camp set up, nightfall has come, and you reach for the headlamp and *click* nothing. Before you head out, check the batteries in your various devices and plug in your rechargeable gear and power stations.
Download Trail Guides for Offline Use
Last but certainly not least, open up the Trails Offroad app on your mobile device or tablet and visit the Offline tab. Download the states you’ll be adventuring in this season and if you have updates available to previous downloads, complete those.
You’ll likely discover more areas of your setup that need reviewing while you’re doing a spring clean. Does your recovery gear look in good shape? Are your cooking utensils all together? Going through everything now can save you a major headache right before your first trip of the season. Tag us on social in your rig spring cleaning so we can make sure we don’t miss anything!