"We've gone on holiday by mistake" rings out from the depths of the forest. It's the unmistakable sound of yet another person who, high on Bear Grylls, has taken themselves off camping only to realise that it's not quite the same deal as the four star mini break to Tuscany enjoyed with Sam from accounts last August.
Camping is amazing, but things can and do go wrong from time to time. But fear not, dear adventurer, for Mpora have got you covered. Whether you're a seasoned pro, or you're just about to nervously pop your camping cherry, here are ten essential camping hacks you never knew you needed.
Sage, along with rosemary and other regular kitchen herbs are excellent at repelling mosquitos. Throw a handful of herbs on your campfire and not only will you smell like an agreeable pizza place, but you'll also keep the mozzies away.
Corn chips, or nachos, aren't just good when you're watching some sort of sporting event with other humans, like something from an advert for shitty american lager. Because they're so high in energy (exactly why eating lots of them will make you fat) they burn easily. Throw a pack in your backpack and you've got yourself some delicious firelighters, should you need them.
Lose Fewer Matches Than Arsenal
Wet matches are just about useless. So, what's worse than wet matches? Matches you cant find. Fear not though, we have the perfect hack.
Take your matches out of their regular cardboard sleeve and put them in a waterproof sandwich box. This will keep them dry, and safely in one place.
EXTRA TIP: Glue a square of sandpaper to the outside of the box lid and you've always got something to ignite them on.
So, you didn't take the advice about herbs in the camp fire and you've found yourself bitten to kingdom-come by all kinds to tiny flying animals. However, that roll on deodorant you packed isn't just good for smelling zesty-fresh.
Many roll-ons have aluminium chloride in them, which should relieve the itching and swelling caused by any nasty bug bites, or brushes with agro fauna. Pop some on the irritated area and you'll be good to go.
Egg-cellent Fire Lighters
Empty egg boxes aren't just for people who think it'll make adequate sound proofing because it looks a bit like genuine soundproofing. They're also a handy, compact fire lighter.
Pop a piece of coal in each former egg housing and you're all set. Then when it come to lighting up, ignite one of the corners, and you've got the perfect start to your fire, plus the coal will burn for ages.
Yoga-na Sleep Well Tonight
So, when you're next out camping, pack your yoga mat. The best part is, instead of rolling it up at night, sleep on it. Unroll it, and pop your sleeping bag on top, and you've got yourself a mattress. A tiny, thin mattress. Namaste, bitches.
Use this super handy packing tip to save tonnes of space when on a camping trip. In fact, use it on just about any trip you're going on. We haven't packed a bag any other way since discovering it. Your t-shirt, a pair of socks, and even your undies, all packed into one snug sausage shape.
NB: It does leave your t-shirts kind of creased, but if sartorial elegance is that important to you anyway, maybe camping isn't your thing anyway, Margaret.
Vaseline Your Balls
There are many, many reasons for packing a tub of petroleum Jelly (such as Vaseline) and cottonwool balls on a camping trip. However, many of them aren't appropriate to go into here, you filthy minded beggars.
That said, the two can be combined to make super effective fire lighters. A couple of days before your trip, soak a load of the cotton wool balls in petroleum jelly melted gently in a saucepan, and leave them for 24 to 48 hours. What you'll be left with are super light weight, and incredibly compact fire lighters that will burn for long enough to get a roaring fire on the go.
Two Jars, One Cloth
Depending on how adventurous you like your camping trip to be, running out of clean water can be a very real problem. If this happens, you may be tempted to drunk some clean looking water from a river, or nearby brooke. However, this is often no more than a quick way to soiling your cargo pants.
All you need to filter clean water from grimy stuff is a couple of jars and a bit of cloth. Just fill jar one with dirty water and place the empty jar two next to it. Put a long, thin bit of cloth into the dirty water, draping the other end into the clean, empty jar.
After a short while, thanks to the magic of science, the clean water will travel up the cloth and into the empty jar, leaving the mud and snot of jar one behind. It's not perfect, but it's better that the alternative.
There's a quick and easy way to create a make-shift oil lamp using everyday items that you might take with you on your camping trip (assuming you're not doing the full-on survival camping, in which case, you don't need light anyway, do you. You're pretty much Bane, aren't you.)
Simply half fill an empty fizzy drinks can with regular olive oil. Then roll up a piece of paper towel, put it in the can, with just enough sticking out the top. Light your wick, and you've got a lamp that should burn for hours. Just remember to extinguish it properly before you go to bed.