If you’re looking to get out of the house for a little fresh air during the COVID-19 pandemic, your options are unfortunately pretty limited. Social distancing measures have closed many public places, making it a challenge to find a good trail to stretch your legs or bust out your mountain bike.

Your Next Camping Trip

The good news is that while public campgrounds are out of the question for a while, dispersed camping is always permitted — and it’s completely acceptable when you’re with a small group (think immediate family) and far removed from other campers.

With that in mind, we’ve put together a list of some fun DIY projects that you can attempt before or during your next camping trip. Give one of these a try and let us know in the comments how it goes!

Build your own survival knife

When you’re planning to spend days in the woods, it’s always a good idea to bring a survival knife. The knife can help you do anything from starting a fire to hunting for food.

Exercise your craftsmanship by buying parts of a knife and putting them together yourself. In the marketplace for DIY knives, we like the options that you’ll find at Self Reliance Outfitters. They offer everything you could possibly need to build your own survival knife and the owner provides some great videos on how to get started.

Craft your own camp stove

Create a DIY camp stove for all of your camping needs. To get started, you’ll need to purchase a galvanized tee duct, duct collar, damper, round duct cap, step flashing, pole barn nails, flat washers and Philips head metal pan screws.

To build the stove fast, fasten the step flashing first. Then hook the duct cap using four screws. For easier hooking, drill pilot holes. The four corners of the flattened step flashing should have a ¼” hole. The cooker will be staked using the holes.

Finish your stove by drilling a hole on the tee duct and then screwing the duct collar on the tee duct’s top.

Colorful Night Camping in Joshua Tree National Park

DIY campground lighting

Your campground needs proper lighting. To create your own, purchase two plastic food containers, an LED strip, a switch, aluminum foil, wire, 12V LiPo battery, double-sided tape and XT60 connectors. All of these items are affordable and easy to find at a convenience or hardware store.

Drill holes in the containers to insert the switch. Next, have one container inserted into the other and wrap the outer part with the aluminum foil.

Roll the LED strip around the containers on top of the foil, leaving small spaces. All the wires must be soldered with a glue gun. The XT60 connector is used as the battery harness and appears at the end of the power cable.

Build a bow and arrow

Make a handmade bow and arrow with your family before camping. The first step is to find the ideal tree. Willows and clear pine aren’t your only options — you can also consider trees like oak, maple and hickory.

Find a tree with a diameter that’s around eight inches. You’ll cut bow staves from this tree. Start early: The wood will need to dry about being cut and may take a month to dry.

When the wood is dry, you’ll debark it using a drawknife. The drawknife will help in giving the bow its shape. Finally, you’ll need to sandpaper the bow, stain it and let the stain dry.

Craft a hatchet

Make a hatchet by shaping an axe head from some scrap metal. Use a hacksaw to cut the scrap metal, smoothing the edges and sharpening the cutting edge.

Drill a pair of rivet holes and then put the steel in an oven set at 475 degrees for around 20 minutes. As it slowly cools, you can shape the hardwood handle.

Create a custom camping hammock

To customize a camping hammock, cut two pieces of nylon and sew them together. Use this material to create a storage pocket on the hammock. You can also create rope channels for hanging by cutting the rope into two equal pieces and burning the ends.

DIY teardrop trailers

A teardrop trailer plays an integral role in your camping journey by providing a storage space for all of your supplies. Many teardrop trailer kits are available online and in stores — buy one that suits your needs.

If you are traveling in your RV, visit our friends over at Camping Console. They have the top recommended sewer hoses, lighting, and all things RV.

A camping journey can become a true adventure by following DIY projects like these. Take pleasure in using items you created yourself. And give yourself plenty of time pre-camping to make everything you’ll need!

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