As the weather starts to cool, Arizonans emerge to go on adventures in the great outdoors, free from the triple digit temperatures. With National Camping Day approaching, camping is a great family activity for individuals, couples and friends of family and there are several ways to experience camping from RV’s to trailers to tents.

C2 Tactical is a local indoor gun range that also offers self-defense and disaster preparedness courses. These safety survival tips can help campers stay aware of their surroundings and potential hazards. We encourage all campers to always be mindful and prepared!

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Must-have Camping Equipment

Vince Vasquez is managing member of C2 Tactical.

Countless unexpected things can happen on a camping trip. While the goal is be surrounded by nature, that also often means being far from civilization and other sources of communication such as cell service and internet. What if you fall on a hiking trail? Become separated from the group? Encounter a not-so-friendly animal?

Basic tools to have handy on a camping trip include a first aid kit, solar phone charger, matches emergency food, a knife and a flashlight. Also consider a non-electronic navigation system. If your phone dies, you’ll want an alternative such as a map or compass.

Light My Fire

For campers escaping civilization near the holidays, learning how to create fire is a vital skill to know before packing the car. Outdoorsmen will likely feel a cold wind and low temperatures at night this time of year. Many campers will flock to Flagstaff where temperatures are much colder than Phoenix as the elevation is almost 7,000 feet.

To start a fire, place tinder in a fire ring then build a small teepee shaped stack over the top. Use smaller sticks on the bottom—the feather sticks– and taller on the top using full sized logs for a fire base structure. Make sure the stacks are perpendicular. Light a match under the feather sticks and protect the fire from wind until it grows steady.

This isn’t an easy skill to master but it can be done with practice. Always carry matches or a lighter, and laundry lint or newspaper makes a great fire starter.

H20 FAQs

The body can only live for three days without water—so campers should know where sources of water are.

If camping in areas with natural springs, be sure to err on the side of caution and not drink directly from the source. A LifeStraw or other water filter is extremely helpful. Always pack a steel pot to boil water in the case your filtration system fails.

If neither of these options are available, tie an absorbent cloth around your ankle and walk through the dewy grass. This might offer enough for a drink until you find a better source. Always become acquainted with the water sources where you’ll be camping before you venture off. It could save your life.

Have a Plan

When arriving at your destination, have a plan and a meeting spot in case you become lost. Navigation is also a skill to master before the trip. Teach your group that the sun rises in the east and sets in the west.

Being prepared before camping or going on a hiking excursion is extremely important. These aren’t easy skills to master but, the wilderness is huge, and you will be glad that you took the time to educate yourself!

To learn more about C2 Tactical and disaster preparedness courses please visit,


Author: Vince Vasquez is managing member of C2 Tactical.