hintsandthings.co.uk »Spare Room

Camping and Caravanning Tips – innovative hints and tips for those who enjoy camping holidays


wpe44.jpg (4448 bytes)



Do not place barbecues inside
confined spaces e.g. tents, caravans, camper vans etc. even if the
fire appears dead and the container is cold enough to handle.

These can emit
deadly carbon monoxide gases.

Carbon monoxide is a poisonous,
colourless and odourless gas which can kill.

Smaller concentrations of this gas
can produce symptoms similar to flu or food poisoning including
headaches, vomiting, dizziness and nausea.


On old (but broken) heavy base electric
frypan with high-dome lid can be used as a camp oven by placing it firmly on a flat bed of
coals or even heat beads.  Provided the heat is evenly distributed it will do a good
job of cooking the Sunday lunch.

Courtesy of
Krystal G

using methylated spirit burners whilst camping or bushwalking if you use a fuel mixture of
80% methylated spirits to 20% water it helps keep the bottom of the pots and billies
clean, reducing the soot and lessening cleaning time.

G sent us this one – thanks.

The plastic tags used to
close sliced bread wrappers can be used as clothes pegs.  About 50 of them stack into
a 35 mm film canister.

gem from Krystal G.

Ice in the cooler (ice chest) whilst

Buy several individual cans of drink such as Capri
Sun or Minute Maid and put in freezer for at least a day prior to leaving.  They make
excellent substitutes for the messy ice cubes that melt in your cooler or those pesky
igloo gel freeze packs.  They are convenient, take up less room because as they melt
inside their containers you still have a cold drink and your food stays cool at the same

Thanks to Jeanette Phifer
for sending us this one

Another similar tip is to fill a large
plastic container with water and freeze until solid.  As it melts, this can then
provide fresh cold water gradually over a long period of time.  Ideal when sailing
To freshen up plastic water containers
before use, place two denture cleaning tablets inside and fill up with water.  Leave
overnight, then discard water.
To keep boots dry and insect free, push
sticks into ground and place boot over top of stick.
Radiator foil makes an ideal insulator
under mattresses, or when sitting and kneeling on the ground.

oranges cut in half

Cut an orange in half and eat the flesh,
leaving the peel complete.  This can then be used to cook eggs in the ashes of a camp
If you smear washing up liquid on the
outside of pans it will prevent the smoke from staining the utensil.
 To facilitate the start of
a camp fire, particularly when kindling is damp, work petroleum
jelly (Vaseline) into cotton balls and ignite. These can be stored
safely in ziplock plastic bags until use.

Keep away from children.


For safety, when using a portable
“Gaz” stove, drill holes in the four “feet” so that you can put a tent
peg through into the ground to fix securely.

toilet roll on a holder

Nothing worse than soggy toilet paper
apart from no toilet paper that is!  Cut down a large plastic drink bottle, put a
slit in the side through which to pass the sheet of paper – and the paper stays dry.

To prevent soap becoming slimy, put the
soap bar into a stocking or one leg of a pair of tights and use through the material.
  This can then be hung up when not in use.
 To keep shoes dry, take a wire coathanger
and bend up about 2″ at each end.  Hang in the usual way and a shoe can be
hooked over the ends.
To hang washing without pegs, take two
pieces of cord , string or rope and twist them together.  Make into a washing line by
suspending between two appropriate places.  Washing can then be “poked”
between the two strands.
 If sleeping on an air bed, if you place a
blanket on top of the mattress, between the airbed and the sleeping bag, it will be much
To make your own larder, sew edges of an
old net curtain to make a bag.  Place a plate in the bottom and thread tape through
the hem at the top to hang the larder up by.
 Place loops over tent rails which can be
used to hang things from without causing water seepage through the canvas.