best baby camping gear

Best Baby Camping Gear for 2020 [Full Packing List]

Best Baby Camping Gear for 2020 [Full Packing List]

There are two types of people in this world:

  1. The type of person for whom taking a baby camping sounds like a complete nightmare
  2. The type of person who thinks it’s the ideal way to spend a vacation.

I’m pretty firmly in camp #1, but Ryan somehow loves camping, so we periodically pack up our entire lives and sleep on the ground.

In general, babies don’t give a hoot where they go during their first year of life as long as they’re warm, dry, and well fed. But any parent wants the best baby camping gear to bring on their camping trip so they can minimize the hassle.

So grab your baby packing list and get ready for your next adventure.

But Do I Really Need Camping Gear for My Baby?

Just what you wanted… more stuff. Right?

You can probably substitute some of this baby camping gear with regular baby gear, or non-age specific camping gear. Your baby probably doesn’t need her own tent trailer! But, outdoor baby gear products come in lightweight designs — to lessen your packing load — and are built for practicality.

So, having some of these pieces of gear could make your life a little easier, which is what I’m all about.

What to Look for in the Infant Camping Products

If you want to have a happy camper in your hands and get more bang for your buck, these are some of the more important features to think about when looking for outdoor baby gear.

Comfort

I still have a lot to learn when it comes to parenting, but I’ve found that keeping Poppy comfortable when we’re out camping makes the whole experience less overwhelming and far more fun. So try not to compromise on how comfortable your baby camping gear is.

Portability

Camping with a newborn in tow is already a handful. We recommend picking out baby gear that is easy to carry around, set up, and stow away after use. We took our 8 week old on a multi-state, 10 day long road trip (read more about road tripping with your baby about that here) and portability was a life saver.

Popularity

Consumer feedback and reviews is invaluable. But keep in mind the popularity of a baby camping product doesn’t reflect its overall practicality and usefulness (that’s why I’m writing this guide!)

Price

Sometimes the most expensive option is not always the most useful piece of camping gear. Take your time and compare what each price range has to offer. Your aim is to get the best value money can buy without compromising on usefulness.

Because there’s so much to choose from when picking out baby gear for camping, here’s our hand-picked list of some of the camping items you wouldn’t want to be caught dead without.

The 10 Best Baby Camping Gear of 2019


Pop N’ Sit Portable Booster by Summer Infant

Comfort:5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)
Portability:5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)
Popularity:5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)
Price:5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)
Average:5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)

I had to list this at the top because we literally use this chair at home. This doubles as a portable high chair, your baby’s own personal lawn chair, and somewhere to put your kiddo when you’re setting up camp.

The good thing about camping gear like the Summer Infant Pop n’ Sit is that such baby products are meant to support your on-the-go lifestyle by making feeding time easy for the parents.

Some of the features that stand out in the Pop n’ Sit include a detachable dishwasher-safe tray, a rear storage pocket, 3 point safety harness, and chair safety straps to help prop it up on a regular sized chair.

Pros

  • It folds compactly and comes with a convenient carry bag.
  • The fact that you can prop it up on a regular chair is a plus. This is especially handy if you suffer from any kind of back problem.
  • It’s fairly priced considering how practical it is and all the handy features it packs.

Cons

  • Only babies who can sit up on their own unassisted should use the Summer Infants Pop n’ Sit booster (it’s not a Bumbo replacement!)
  • It’s so cute but if your baby is large, I see this being a problem.
  • Unfastening the straps after use is not user friendly.
Portable Outdoor Shower

Comfort:5 out of 5 stars (5.0 / 5)
Portability:5 out of 5 stars (5.0 / 5)
Popularity:5 out of 5 stars (5.0 / 5)
Price:4 out of 5 stars (4.0 / 5)
Average:4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)

This may not be baby-specific. But I will say that I used to be able to skip a shower while camping. And then I had a baby. Hello spit up! Oh, and blowouts…

This handheld device will solve all your water woes when camping with newborns thanks to its built-in filtration feature. The filtration system instantly turns lake water into clean shower water, by drawing water from a bucket and converting it into a steady shower-like stream.

The unit’s integrated suction cup and S-style hanging system is convenient and helps to free up your hands when bathing little ones. The water pressure is gentle enough on a baby and there’s no risk of overstimulating them during bath time.

Pros

  • One of the most versatile shower systems on the market. You get to enjoy all the amenities of a home shower minus all the plumbing.
  • Battery-powered convenience. The rechargeable pump connects to a laptop or car adapter via USB. A full charge can last an hour of continuous use.
  • The compact design helps to stow away in your backpack easily.

Cons

  • The on/off button is located on the actual submersible pump, making it tough to control water flow.
  • Whatever you do, don’t lose the charger. Finding a replacement for the unique charger is annoying.
Sunday Afternoons Adventure Hat

Comfort:5 out of 5 stars (5.0 / 5)
Portability:5 out of 5 stars (5.0 / 5)
Popularity:4 out of 5 stars (4.0 / 5)
Price:4 out of 5 stars (4.0 / 5)
Average:4.5 out of 5 stars (4.5 / 5)

I have to admit that these hats are super geeky looking, so they don’t exactly make the best Instagram pics. But every kid needs a sun hat, and the protection is worthwhile. Sunday’s Adventure Hat has a big down-sloping front brim and a back veil neck flap to protect your baby’s face and neck from harmful sun rays.

The adjustable chin strap and smart fabrics used on the Adventure Hat offers functional sun protection when it’s time to hit the trail.

Pros

  • They’ve used breathable fabric (100% polyester mesh ventilation) to make it cool and breezy.
  • It’s hard to ignore the sun-conscious design on Sunday’s Adventure Hat. It features a UPF 50+ rating and a moisture wicking band that keeps sweat out of your baby’s eyes – very handy!
  • The brim is black on the inside which helps to keep the glare down really well.

Cons

  • A more rounded bill would have offered more protection for a baby.
  • The 2 Velcro patches at the back meant to hold up the neck flap are not user friendly.
BRICA Fold N’ Go Bassinet

Comfort:5 out of 5 stars (5.0 / 5)
Portability:5 out of 5 stars (5.0 / 5)
Popularity:4 out of 5 stars (4.0 / 5)
Price:4 out of 5 stars (4.0 / 5)
Average:4.5 out of 5 stars (4.5 / 5)

Our list of baby camping gear felt kinda incomplete until we stumbled upon Brica’s Fold N’ Go Bassinet.

This is a comfortable and safe place for your baby to sleep when out camping. What makes it a good buy is its quick and easy set up, a convenient carry handle, and a locking frame that provides stability.

The stain resistant sheet on the mattress pad is also removable and easy to clean.

Pros

  • Weighing less than 3 pounds, this lightweight design stores easily and is portable enough to bring on all your travels with a newborn.
  • Ventilated mesh panels guarantee good airflow.
  • They’ve used a four-point T-lock system for added safety – exactly what any parent needs in a sleeping aid for peace of mind.

Cons

  • Unless you’re using the bassinet on a flat stable surface, it rolls easily with any weight shifts.
  • It’s not super-comfy but comfy still. Brica would have made the mattress pad on this bassinet thicker.
  • Great, but only for a short time. Recommended use is up to 3 months or 15 pounds or when your baby can push up on their hands and knees – whichever comes first.
Large Waterproof Folding Blanket

Comfort:4 out of 5 stars (4.0 / 5)
Portability:5 out of 5 stars (5.0 / 5)
Popularity:3 out of 5 stars (3.0 / 5)
Price:5 out of 5 stars (5.0 / 5)
Average:4.3 out of 5 stars (4.3 / 5)

We simply love this folding outdoor blanket. It’s large enough to seat 3 adults and a baby and small enough for a backpack.

It doubles as a comfortable surface to have meals when camping and a clean place for your baby to hang out and enjoy tummy time. This outdoor blanket is made of durable materials (600 D polyester and PVC) which is a huge plus if you’re a sucker for sturdy baby gear like us.

Pros

  • You’ll love how easy it is to clean this blanket. When spills happen – and they almost always do with a baby around – use a towel to absorb any excess liquid then use a damp cloth to wipe clean.
  • The blanket is reinforced by an extra foam layer in the middle to make it comfier than regular outdoor blankets.
  • Easy to fold after use.

Cons

  • Before using it, you’ll have to air it outside to get rid of the strong chemical smell.
  • Only two designs to choose from.
Graco Pack n’ Play Sport Playard

Comfort:5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)
Portability:5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)
Popularity:3 out of 5 stars (3 / 5)
Price:3 out of 5 stars (3 / 5)
Average:4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

This may be one of those items that you could probably skip if you wanted to go minimalist, but it’s definitely a “nice to have”. A pack n’ play pen like the Graco Playard serves 2 purposes when you’re out camping with your baby: it’s a comfy area for them to take a nap and a playpen where they get to watch all the interesting activities going on around camp. Which is a win-win if you ask me.

The Graco features a large removable dome canopy – with a UV liner – that shields and protects your baby on a hot day. It’s also well ventilated for maximum airflow and has a padded bottom to protect your baby from the harsh ground elements.

Pros

  • Easy to set up. You can have the playard ready in 5 seconds by using a secure two-latch system.
  • When it’s time to pack up, the dome folds neatly into the built-in storage pocket. Since all accessories stay together, there’s no risk of losing an important part of your playard.
  • It’s an easy and lightweight carry. The shoulder carrying bag makes it even more convenient to tote around.
  • I love that it’s super sturdy and looks durable.

Cons

  • A good buy by all means but the price is more on the higher side.
  • Although the top canopy is great, the sides don’t have any such feature to provide shade for your baby on a sunny day.
  • The top doesn’t seal completely to keep bugs out.
Stonz Three Season Baby Booties

Comfort:4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)
Portability:5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)
Popularity:3 out of 5 stars (3 / 5)
Price:4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)
Average:4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

These fleece-lined booties are all weather and the perfect baby gear to keep your baby’s extremities as warm as the rest of their body – especially if their feet are still too small to fit actual boots.

The best part about these booties is they can be worn barefoot, over a pair of shoes or even with socks. You’ll be spoilt for choice.

Pros

  • They are soft on developing feet.
  • Don’t be surprised if you pass them down to your second/third baby. They’re that durable.
  • The skid resistant toughtek soles are the best for all kinds of outdoor play.

Cons

  • Slightly more expensive than regular booties.
  • A bit tricky to slip on if you don’t get the right size. If you’re gonna be using them with a pair of shoes, and your baby wears a size 3, for example, pick the next size for the booties.
Natural Mosquito Repellent Bracelet

Comfort:4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)
Portability:5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)
Popularity:2 out of 5 stars (2 / 5)
Price:5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)
Average:4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Deet is pretty much poison and call me precious, but lathering it all over tender baby skin is not ideal. These deet-free bracelets are your next best bet.

The mild formula used is a blend of 100% natural substances like lemongrass, citronella, and geraniol essential oils which is effective in keeping your baby safe from pesky mosquito and bug bites while camping.

The fact that one size fits all makes these bracelets good value for money. Each bracelet is adjustable, stretchy and easily fits making it perfect for the whole family and not just baby.

Pros

  • Comes with resealable bags to store the bracelets when not in use.
  • It’s easy to wear and the design itself looks pretty good and comfortable – they’ve used high quality soft micro fiber.
  • Customer reviews give it a thumbs up for smelling much better than most sprays or repellant bracelets they’ve tried.

Cons

  • These bracelets are not waterproof and will become less effective if they come into contact with water.
  • Each bracelet only has 300 hours of juice in it. Which isn’t much if you like taking your baby on outdoor adventures as much as we do.
Baby Pronto Portable Changing Station

Comfort:3 out of 5 stars (3.0 / 5)
Portability:4 out of 5 stars (4.0 / 5)
Popularity:3 out of 5 stars (3.0 / 5)
Price:5 out of 5 stars (5.0 / 5)
Average:3.8 out of 5 stars (3.8 / 5)

You need this. Seriously. Regardless of whether you’re camping. This portable changing station allows you to handle blowouts like a pro wherever they happen without getting overwhelmed.

Drop it in your backpack, wear it on your wrist or clip it to your stroller when you don’t need to carry the whole diaper bag and you’ll be good to go.

The roomy mesh pocket is large enough to hold up to four diapers, creams, and other essentials.

Pros

  • It features a handy zippered front pocket to hold your keys, mobile phone, and other personal items.
  • One side is cushioned to keep your baby’s head comfy.
  • Its extra wide changing pad is easy to clean. Simply use a damp cloth to wipe it down.
  • The material used to make the kit is waterproof.

Cons

  • Apart from the head area, the rest of the changing station isn’t padded which can be quite uncomfortable for a baby.
  • It looks like putting more than one diaper in the diaper compartment would make it bulky and hard to close. Real bummer – I can’t imagine going anywhere with Poppy carrying only one diaper.
gDiapers gPants

Comfort:4 out of 5 stars (4.0 / 5)
Portability:5 out of 5 stars (5.0 / 5)
Popularity:3 out of 5 stars (3.0 / 5)
Price:3 out of 5 stars (3.0 / 5)
Average:3.8 out of 5 stars (3.8 / 5)

Using cloth diapers is 1000x better than disposables. But, if you’ll be camping with your baby, disposables are more practical.

And nothing screams practicality like these gDiapers gPants. These are soft diaper covers made of breathable cotton that can be used with disposable inserts (the inserts can then be flushed, composted or tossed).

Pros

  • Each pair of gPants has a waterproof pouch which contains any blowouts and keeps your baby clean and comfy.
  • The pouch easily snaps in and out for quick changes.
  • gPants are breathable and allow air to circulate freely which reduces diaper rash.

Cons

  • The system that uses disposable inserts is pretty expensive.
  • Not the best fit for chunky babies.

When we were camping with our 2 month old, we had a man approach us from the campsite across from ours. His wife was 7 months pregnant, and he was in awe. He asked how old our baby was, and told us that we gave him hope. The couple’s main hobby was camping, but he was nervous that they wouldn’t be able to go when their little one was born.

Do NOT think your life is over just because you have a baby. It’s not. Camping with a kid, no matter what age, will come with a host of new challenges compared to when it was just the two of you. But if you enjoy it, it’s worthwhile.

Besides, packing up the car and driving to a secluded campsite in the woods is not as difficult as it was a couple of years ago. Cell phones make emergencies less startling and baby camping gear concepts like the ones on this list are a smart way of keeping stress levels in check.

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