Great Camping Compromise in Divided Families

Camping Compromise for Non-campers

Are you part of a divided family?  Does your family consist of campers and non-campers?  Today we are discussing the great camping compromise in these divided families.

Jenny left this comment on our blog,

My husband & son are big into camping, especially my son for some reason.  He keeps begging for us to take him camping.  Me, personally– hate it.  Like…it’s not bad or anything but the last time I got dragged on a camping trip I froze my butt off all night.  Was not happy…and I don’t really wanna do it all again.

So what do you do in this situation?

There’s the obvious solution.  Let the campers camp and the non-campers stay home and do their own thing (as long as adults are present).  But if the family wants to spend time together, it’s going to take some compromise.

How to Reach a Camping Compromise

Camp in good weather.  You notice that Jenny mentions freezing her butt off.  Nothing ruins a camping trip for newbies like extreme weather– too cold or too hot, rainy, etc…  Certainly, having the right camping apparel, sleeping bag and tent should minimize these problems, but camping in nice weather is an easy way to start the camping trip off on a positive note.

Keep the first couple camping trips short for the non-camper.  It’s all about easing them into camping and making the trip enjoyable.

Find an activity the non-camper will enjoy while camping.  Campgrounds have a lot of activities to choose from, including horseback riding, canoeing, massages, touring historic sites, sightseeing and more.  Once you find an activity they will enjoy, it should be easy for the campers to find fun activities around the campgrounds.

Consider comfort camping or yurt camping for that first camping trip.  You can always step up the adventure level on future camping trips.

Camping is not for everyone and that’s okay.  To each his own. Just remember, the great camping compromise runs both ways.  Have fun at the Opera next week!

I’ll see ya by the campfire.


Amelia, from Tales of a Mountain Mama, also has a post about divided families called For the Love of Another: When Outdoor Time is Just Not Something You All Love.  You can read her post here.

For information about first-time camping trips, see my post the Girly-Girl Camping Guide.


Do you live in a family of campers and non-campers?  How do you make it work?  What advice would you give to these families?

(Visited 85 times, 1 visits today)

Sign up for A Little Campy Newsletter & continue the camping fun!

Tiffany loves tent camping and knows how to bait a hook.

Share This


  1. Agree with comfort camping. There are a lot of campgrounds here starting to offer that option complete with little camping cabins. And the whole group doesn’t have to get a cabin. Those who want to camp in tents or trailers can do that too. Then you all hang out around the fire at somebody’s site. When it comes time for bed, everybody goes back to their choice of sleeping option.

    We also like hostels and backcountry cabins. It’s another gentle introduction and we’ve taken family here that doesn’t typically camp.

  2. My husband and I took our granddaughter camping for the first time at a local state park. Her parents (our son and wife) are not campers and don’t particularly like to be outside (bugs and spiders) but are happy to let us take Lily. Since we were close, Mommy and Daddy came for a cookout which made Lily very happy. They went home and Lily had a wonderful time in the great outdoors with Grandma and Grandpa.

  3. Some people seem to be comfortable in shirt sleeves down to freezing temperatures. Then they sleep like a baby on the cold hard ground. And then because they’re comfortable and also the person who packed everything, the normal people among us are blatantly miserable the whole time. No wonder camping gets such a bad reputation! I hate being cold and uncomfortable. Heck, I freeze to death in the house at 75 degrees! So when my husband got really, really interested in having me go camping and backpacking with him (in all weather!!) he had to be prepared to get me the proper gear and clothing that I need to be comfortable. We now camp and backpack in all seasons and I gladly accompany him with little grumbling. I have my own super warm sleeping bag and cushy sleeping pad. I have comfy, warm clothing. And I’ve learned to pack my own entertainment or electronics to keep myself busy. I have all my own gear, including a headlamp so I can read at night if I have trouble sleeping. I’ve got food I like, enough coffee, and really great chair to lounge in.

    Interestingly, when people find out that we’ve been camping, they usually say that I’m brave or that they could never do that. I hear this so much that I wrote a post about it, hopefully shedding some light on the reasons why there are so many divided camping families and what to do about it.

  4. Hi Tiffany. Great post. I would definitely recommend ‘glamping’ to those who don’t like camping. It lets everyone experience the best bits of camping (being closer to nature and outdoors) without the bad (being cold and uncomfortable). Hopefully keeping everyone happy.
    Smiles. Sarah

  5. When I was little, we sort of backed into camping. I remember staying at a hotel in Aspen, Colorado, and then going to the park, where my mom cooked the bacon on a Coleman camp stove on the picnic table. That was fun, and she got that part down.

    The next step was when we went to a Cutty campground, where they set up a tent trailer for us, and all we needed was our sleeping bags and cook gear.

    Eventually we just got our own tent trailer and began camping all over the West.

    As for being cold at night, I hate that to this day! A good sleeping bag or bed roll is a must, and I often heat water on the camp stove, pour it into leak-proof plastic water bottles, and tuck them in with me to warm my sack!

    Happy trails!


Speak Your Mind


CommentLuv badge