Is there anything better post-camp set-up, with a fire blazing, than a nice, refreshing beverage in hand? After all the hard work of tedious directions, settling into your campsite, fumbling through tent rods, and forming the perfect log tepee to keep the flames lasting through the night – you deserve a drink. And not just any can of beer or glass of wine, a delicious cocktail that is the perfect companion for a crisp night or balmy evening. So, if drinking while camping is your thing, we’ve concocted just the guide for you before your next camping trip when the question comes into the conversation: “so… what do we want to drink?”
KNOW BEFORE YOU GO: IS ALCOHOL ALLOWED WHILE CAMPING?
This might be the first thought on your mind, and you’re not wrong to wonder about it.
Before you go camping, you’ll want to check if drinking is allowed at the campsite of you’re choosing. If you’re camping in the backcountry, the world is your oyster! Just make sure to be safe while doing so. If you’re at a campground, you’ll want to check with their rules and make sure you won’t have to chuck the goods due to poor planning.
Now, the other side of this question – should you drink alcohol while camping?
The short answer is yes, if you want to.
Nothing beats cracking the top on an ice-cold beer or refreshing cocktail after a day full of hiking or kayaking to relax the muscles and mind. However, we have a few tips for those of you who do wish to partake.
RESPONSIBILITY FIRST, FUN SECOND
There are a few common ground rules among campers and outdoorsmen alike. Some you’ve heard before, others you’ll be thankful you read before being shunned as “that guy” on the camping trip.
PACK IT IN, PACK IT OUT
Whatever you bring with you, bring back! Or at least to the nearest trash area. Go one step further, and pick up after those pesky neighbors that didn’t get the memo and mark off your good deed for the day.
TRASH BAGS ON DECK
Always bring something to recycle and throw away your plastic cups and bottles and food scraps in! You don’t want to attract hungry squirrels… or worse.
Downsize your booze by minimizing your packaging before leaving the house. Plus, it makes for an easy getaway when you’re ready to leave.
PROCEED WITH CAUTION
Read and follow all signage and rules! Don’t get a fine for loud music, drinking while driving, or being the noisy neighbor.
STAY THE COURSE
While drinking, it may seem like a fun idea to make your own trail or carve something funny into a tree – but try to avoid these urges. You may get hurt, and Mother Nature is a masterpiece that doesn’t need your handy work.
THE EASIEST, BEST CAMPING DRINK RECIPES
There are plenty of amazing drink recipes for camping, but our golden rule is: the less, the better.
It’s always a good idea to pre-make your alcohol to make your camping experience lighter. Here are some good backpacking cocktails you can try.
If you’re hiking to your campsite, you really don’t have any room for extra baggage. Even when you’re just parked at your campsite, you don’t want to lug your alcohol as well as the rest of your things in and out of the car.
We have a few solid recipes that will keep your ingredient list minimal and efficient:
- Vodka Soda. A classic, for good reason. It’s easy to make, refreshing and light during those sweltering summer days, and takes up little room. Just add 2oz. of Switch Vodka light, soda water and a squeeze of lime and you’re good to go!
- Spiked Emergen-C Kit. One of our favorites because you’re hitting two birds with one stone – re-up your electrolytes and immune system with a packet of Emergen-c powder, add 2 oz. of flavored Switch Vodka, and 8 oz. of water.
- The Peachy Palmer. This southern delight is bound to leave your tastebuds happy and your buzz enjoyable. 1.5 oz of Switch Peach Basil Vodka 3oz. of sweet tea, and 3 oz of lemonade.
Each of these recipes will give you one perfectly delicious cocktail to enjoy under the starry skies and swaying trees, reflecting on what a great day you’ve had and an even better start to your night.
Relax, and enjoy!
DRINKING WHILE CAMPING 101
Now that you’ve picked which fun new recipe you want to try out, we have a few pointers to keep in mind while you’re enjoying your campfire cocktail.
MINIMIZE THE SIZE
Pre-mixing your cocktail and sticking it in a canteen that you can dip into as you please is our worry-free method of choice.
Alcohol is a diuretic, meaning it removes fluids – like water – from your blood quickly, so you need to throw water into the mix to avoid passing out or any other dangerous side effects while away from immediate help or hydration.
KEEP YOUR ACTIVITIES IN MIND
If you’re going hiking, kayaking, fishing, or what have you – this likely means a lot of sun and exhaustion, which can leave you feeling woozy as is! Keep the alcohol minimal until you’re back at your campsite to avoid any accidents while enjoying your day.
WHAT PAIRS WELL WITH DRINKING WHILE CAMPING?
Have your drink and your friends with you, but not quite sure what you can do next?
We’ve got a few tricks – and games – up our sleeves to keep you entertained.
- Medusa is a classic to play with friends, and requires nothing but your sight and a drink to participate! For this one, the rules are simple. Gathered around a table, each player puts their drink down, and bows their head. On the count of three, each player looks at another players. If you look at another player and they are looking at someone else, you’re safe. If you lock eyes with another player, you both must yell, “Medusa!” and take a gulp from your cup. Simple, yet surprisingly entertaining. Feel free to add a spin to make it more competitive, like rock-paper-scissors between the two players that made eye contact to decide who drinks.
- Never Have I Ever is a classic drinking game that will have you well acquainted with a group of what once were strangers. All you have to do to play is hold up a hand, and go around in a circle, admitting something like “Never have I ever been skydiving,” and if someone has done that, they put a finger down and drink. Play until there’s only one person left, and they are the winner!
- Another ice breaker drinking game that you can play anywhere is Two Truths and a Lie. As the name states, one person tells the rest of the group two true statements and one false one. Those that guess the lie correctly are safe. The rest of you, drink up!
These are just a few to get you started, but there are plenty more fun things out there, like bocce ball, cards, lawn darts, etc.
You’ve got your drink of choice, your group, and the wonders of mother nature to ease the thoughts of reality while you spend some time off grid.