How To Pick The Perfect Camping Spot!

~This post is sponsored by Head Country Barbecue Sauce but all opinions are my own.~

Y’all! It’s summertime!!! And that means, camping, bonfires, cookouts, outdoor fun, and sweet family memories. I am going to round up our last camping trip to the Buffalo River and help you find your perfect camping adventure this summer.

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Location

First off, start from your current location point. Where do you want to travel? Bucket list camp sites? Should you wander far or maybe if this is your first family camp, consider closer to home in case utter chaos breaks loose and its too hot or cold or someone forgets their security blankie.

This post is going to give you some highlights from our recent trip to the Buffalo River, in Northwest Arkansas. Canoeing the Buffalo from Steel Creek and camping at Kyle’s Landing.  But I’ll also highlight a few of our favorite places in Oklahoma for you locals.

  1. Buffalo River, Arkansas (Kyle’s Landing)
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Here are some great Oklahoma Camp Site adventures

2. Chickasaw National Recreation Area, Sulphur, OK

3. Eagle Bluff Resort, Tahlequah, OK

4. Natural Falls State Park, West Siloam Springs, OK

Outdoor Activities

What’s important to your family? Hiking, canoeing, swimming, fishing, spelunking (insert by Russell Hutcherson), wildlife viewing, bird photography? Check the local camp site websites for what fits your desires to make the best experience ever.

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We enjoyed canoeing the Buffalo River, stopping for picnics and snacks, and taking hikes to beautiful waterfalls and caves. Hiking with little ones is hard but they were troopers and to see their faces when they experienced the wonder of what Arkansas nature has to offer, it is worth every piggy back ride up a trail.

Amenities

Don’t forget to look into the restroom options!  If you have little ones that enjoy relieving themselves in the great outdoors then you can skip this research. I, on the other hand need bathrooms….  clean bathrooms…. and a limited amount of bugs crawling around when I’m feeling most vulnerable. Showers are nice but if its a quick trip I prefer a quick dip in a river, dry shampoo, and some baby wipes until I can get home to my Jacuzzi tub.

Bring the kids travel lanterns and a lot of their bedding from home so they feel comfortable. Our babies slept so hard and comfy after their busy days.

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FOOD!

Make sure you are prepared for meal prep: does the campsite have grills or fire pits available or are your bringing your own camp grill? Are there picnic tables available for setting up meals or do you need to bring your own table and chairs. A canopy tent is super versatile so you can enjoy  your meals and wind down time with family just in case of inclement weather. Or bugs…

Make sure to pack all your favorite food and snacks. We prefer to pack non perishable foods in a plastic bin, easy to transfer to the campsite and keep locked up from pesky critters. Coolers for the perishables and make sure to stock up on plenty of ice. We pack plenty of small portioned items (pouches, GORP, crackers, etc.) so that you can easily throw them in your back pack for  a quick outing or, for the obvious reason: your kids can help themselves.  We love to plan one really good, delicious meal just to make us feel fancy and reward ourselves for ALL of the TIME and energy it truly takes to go camping. We always bring a bottle of Head Country BBQ Sauce, its so versatile. They also have some great non-traditional flavors than can spice up any dish such as hamburgers, steaks, pork, or our delicious chicken kabobs. We grilled some chicken kabobs and corn on our portable camping grill.  They came out delicious. My new favorite Head Country Barbecue Sauce is Apple Habanero and it is not as spicy as it sounds. See their entire collection here at headcountry.com.

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Tent Set Up Location

Now maybe you are super awesome and you roll up in a camper and if this is you, I’m coming with you guys.  But if you’re rollin’ out that tent bag and whispering frustrations under your breath with the tent poles then let’s talk strategy. Try to find as flat as space as possible, remove uneven rocks, branches and check for snake holes. Trees can be great for coverage and to protect from wind and sun. Position your opening to the view.  We like to have our door face South/East so we can catch a beautiful sunrise and get started on the ride side of the bed… or cot.  If your’e extra like me and my little girl you might be setting up two tents!  Our sweet Stella doll has her own tent and sleeping bag. Don’t worry, we moved her into our tent so she wouldn’t blow away. In other news, make sure your tent is spacious. Especially if you are like me and like to OVER PACK the entire house because… what if?!?!?!

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We had the best time and if this picture doesn’t sum up a wonderful weekend spent with family and friends,  then I don’t know what does. I hope this post encourages you to get your family out this summer and enjoy what Mother Nature has to offer!

Alright, I’m off to finish the excessive laundry that camping produces…  even though somehow you’re in the same outfit most of the time… and yeah, this was a month ago. Cool.

 

XO,

Sarah

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