Category Archives for "Camping"

What is an NOAA Radio?

If you live in an area that often has tornadoes, hurricanes, earthquakes, or any other natural disasters or severe weather, it is a good idea to buy a weather radio. However, not all weather radios were made equally. An NOAA Weather Radio is more than just a standard radio. Here is the difference between an NOAA Weather Radio and just the typical radio.

What Is An NOAA Weather Radio?

An NOAA Weather Radio (NWR) is a 24-hour network of various radio stations throughout the United States. These VHF FM weather radio stations will transmit any weather news to a local National Weather Service office. Even with other radios aren’t working, an NOAA radio continues to work throughout national disasters and severe weather conditions. 

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) does not produce and manufacture radios. Instead, NOAA is the network that transmits out to more than 90% of the US, in all 50 states, including Puerto Rico, the US Virgin Islands, and the US Pacific Territories. 

The name “NOAA Radio” is only given to qualified weather radios that are able to capture and transmit the emergency broadcast signal. NOAA Radio is a national network of radio stations that broadcasts directly from the National Weather Service (NWS). These broadcasts are aired 24/7 and might include forecasts, watches, warnings, current weather. That NOAA logo is included on all of Service Survival’s weather radios. 

Why Choose An NOAA Radio? 

The advantage of a weather radio like an NOAA Weather Radio is especially strong in areas that experience wildfires, hurricanes, tornadoes, or other extreme weather. Having a weather radio, even a simple and unfancy one, can help you get all the pertinent information you need to stay safe in an emergency. 

While you might rely on your phone currently to update you on any changes in the weather, but in severe weather situations, your smartphone or a normal radio might stop working. That’s why it is so important to have an NOAA weather radio in your emergency preparedness pack to keep you informed of any changes in the weather. 

Not only does NWR transmit weather alerts, but it might also send out information that is non-weather, including natural disaster information, national security statements, and other public safety statements, such as AMBER Alerts. 

Having an NOAA radio can save your life by keeping you updated on any changes in weather, helping to keep you and your family safe.

Top Picks For NOAA Emergency Radio

NOAA Radio

This NOAA Radio from Service Survival is a great option to help you stay updated on all weather changes. With NOAA capabilities as well as AM/FM transmission, you never have to worry about staying connected in a natural disaster. This NOAA radio is extremely easy to use, and will never lose power as it can be charged in five different ways, including a micro USB, hand crank, power bank, solar panel, and by battery. Just one minute of manual hand cracking can support 20 minutes of light, or 10-15 minutes of broadcasting.  

Mini Solar Weather Radio

If you are looking for a compact weather radio to add to your natural disaster preparedness bag, then this might be the right one for you. It has a light torch, AM/FM transmission and SOS functionality. Also included is a power bank to keep your devices charged if you lose power, and it can be charged in five different ways, including a hand crank and solar power. 


7 Tips For A Fall Camping Trip

It might seem impossible, but summer is already almost over. The smell of crisp, fall air is about to fill the air, and even though there is a bit of a nip in the air, it is a truly majestic time to go camping. It’s especially a perfect time to go camping if you love to start a fire and look at the changing colors of the leaves. However, because summer camping is very different from fall camping, you need to make sure you are preparing properly. Here are some tips to help you get ready for the new season.

  1. Be Prepared

Before you leave for your trip, make sure to research about the fall camping destination. Make sure know what the weather is typical during that time of the year, where the campsites are, and if there are any fun activities you can do, like hiking, kayaking, fishing, or more.

  1. Use A Tarp

Using a tarp underneath your tent is an excellent way to help insulate you away from the chill of the fall air. If fall rains are more prevalent in your area, it can also help to keep your tent dry. Make sure that the tent fully covers the tarp. If any part of the bottom tarp is exposed, it will collect water, and you might wake up with a soggy sleeping bag.

  1. Plan For An Earlier Sunset

When camping or hiking in the fall, remember that the sun will set a few hours earlier than you might be used to during the summer. Bring plenty of flashlights, batteries, or a headlamp to ensure that you can still move around the campsite at night without any problems.

  1. Test Out Your Gear

If you are using a thicker sleeping bag or a new tent, make sure to test it out before you embark on the trip. Therefore, you can make sure there are no broken tents or zippers that will put a damper on your trip.

  1. Pack For Fall

When you go camping in the fall, it can be tricky to know what to wear, but the key is layering. At the beginning of the day, the temperature might start cold, then go to hot by noon, and then back to cold at night. When you are sleeping, or just starting to warm up, you might need more layers.

Your packing list might look like:

  • Hat to keep you warm at night
  • Jacket that is wind and water-resistant
  • Gloves or mittens
  • Moisture-wicking thermal underwear
  • Sweater or jacket that you can take off as you get warmer
  • Rain jacket

  1. Pack an NOAA Radio

In the fall, you never know what weather might pop up, including sudden thunderstorms, or even snowstorms if you are camping in elevation. Therefore, having an NOAA Radio is always a good idea, because it can inform you of any sudden weather changes. An NOAA radio like this one can even serve as a way to charge your devices, or as a back-up lighting source.

  1. Be Careful of Animals

Fall is a time when most animals are mating and are more active or aggressive than they might have been earlier in the year. Therefore, be respectful of the wildlife, and clean up your trash and food, so you aren’t attracting any wildlife like bears to your campsite.

  • September 11, 2019
  • Camping

Camping Safety Tips

Solo camping can be a thrilling experience. The knowledge that you are alone, with only your thoughts to keep you company can be exhilarating or perhaps a bit intimidating for some. However, this shouldn’t stop you from enjoying a few days camping on your own. Here are a few extra safety precautions to ensure you have a fun trip and make it back safely. 

1. Acknowledge Your Fears

The first obstacle you might have to overcome is all in your own head. The fears you might be feeling are worrying about physical harm, getting lost, or what other people might think when they see you all alone. 

If you are scared that you won’t be able to do it on your own, the only way to overcome this fear is to get out there and do it. While you don’t have to undertake a week-long camping trip into the wilderness right from the start, you might want to consider choosing a camping site that still has running water and electricity. There are even some campgrounds where you can drive your car right up to the site, which helps to reduce your fears of getting lost. 

And remember, at the end of the day, other people’s opinion shouldn’t matter to you. That family who seems to be giving you a side eye, or the group of friends who seem to be silently judging you shouldn’t have a negative impact on your trip. 

2. Be Confident

When you go out on your first solo trip, confidence is critical. The vibe of confidence you put out can help you stay safe. Keep your head up, make eye contact, and walk with confidence to make it less likely that you will be messed with because you don’t look like a weak target. 

This advice of confidence holds true for wildlife as well. If you have a close encounter with a bear, you should always stand tall and slowly back away. Look that bear directly in the eye and try shouting things at it. Usually, the bear will get out of there. Confidence is just effective on bears as it is on humans. 

3. Bring Pepper Spray

While confidence and making eye contact will reduce the possible attacks you might face, it shouldn’t be your own line of defense. It is better to have pepper spray and never use it, then to wish you had brought it along. Even if you don’t end up needing it, just knowing that you have it in case of an attack can help quell any fears and reduce your anxiety before your first solo trip. 

4. Bring The Right Tools 

Beyond just a tent, food, and fire source, you might want to consider packing a couple of extra things in your pack. One such example is an emergency device which can act as a locator beacon. If you did have any problems, you can press a button, and it will send out a distress signal. You can keep this device on your person, and when you leave the camp, you know you are always going to be found. Regardless if you run into trouble with another human, have a terrible encounter with an animal, or experience an unexpected injury, the emergency device can signal you need help. This is an especially good idea if you are going to a place with a bad cell signal, or if your phone runs out of battery. 

Unexpected weather patterns are hard to plan for but can be a serious danger to campers. Therefore, you might want to consider packing a solar powered AM/FM radio like this NOAA Solar Weather Radio. It is an all-in-one tool that gives you all the necessary components you need on a camping trip, including a flashlight and power bank that can charge four devices at once. If something does go wrong, it can serve as a good backup light source and keeps you updated on any changing weather forecasts. 

5. Prepare Fully 

Going on your first solo trip can be nervewracking, so do everything you can to prepare beforehand. Try to stage everything at home first to make sure you can set up the tent without any problems and that you can carry your pack. Check for your flashlight, tent, water, food, sleeping bag, first-aid kit, and any other essentials you might need before you go. By checking everything before you go, you won’t have to approach a stranger and ask for any help. 

Going camping on your own can be a liberating experience, and it doesn’t have to be scary. With some preparation and acting confident, you can enjoy your first solo camping trip. Tell us in the comments about your first solo trip! 

5 Of The Best Summertime Beach Camping Trips

Summer has officially arrived, and sometimes all you need is a little sun, sand, and your tent. Some of the best getaways including a beach view, with bonfires and unforgettable ocean sunrises or sunsets, and the blissful sound of waves crashing against the sand as you sleep off a hard day of playing in the water, hiking the coast, or just soaking in the sun.

However, the problem is not very many beaches around the country allow camping. To help you in your search, we have rounded up some of the best options for you to enjoy the sand and surf while camping.

1. Na Pali Coast

Kauai, Hawaii

This one might be a bit of a reach for some because it is located on the Hawaiin island Kauai, but the beautifully lush valley, sea cliffs, waterfalls, and pristine beaches make camping along the Na Pali Coast a completely surreal experience. The 22-mile round-trip backpack can be done in just two days, or you can choose to add on a few days to soak up the natural beauty.

You will have to obtain a camping permit beforehand, so make sure to plan a few months in advance. The summertime months can be hot and humid, but you can cool off in the ocean or go kayaking. Make sure to pack mosquito repellant, sunscreen, and water, as well as rain gear! You will also need to pack a camp stove and fuel because you are not permitted to have an open fire.

2. Cape Lookout National Seashore

Carteret County, North Carolina

If you truly want to get away from it all, then Cape Lookout National Seashore is where you should be going. There are no developments or campgrounds around, so it allows you the chance to camp serenely along the beach. You have to arrive via ferry, and once you get there, there are no roads. If you do end up bringing a car, make sure it is 4-wheel-drive, because non-4WD can get stuck in the soft, loose sand. During your time along the cape, you can enjoy a few days of kayaking along the 112 miles of shoreline, fishing, or watching for wildlife and the bioluminescent plankton at night. If you go during the summer, make sure to bring your insect repellent and foot-long stakes to keep your tent anchored in the soft sands.

3. Second Beach Trail

Olympic National Park, WA

If you can’t choose between forest or beach, then Second Beach Trail should be your go-to spot. It gives you the best of both worlds along the mile-long trail. While there, you can enjoy wildlife like bald eagles, seals, and even whales. If you do plan on spending a few nights here, you will have to obtain a Wilderness Camping Permit. In addition, all food, garbage, or scented items must be stored in park-approved bear canisters, which are located all up and down the wilderness coast. You are not permitted to bring your own bear canister anymore.

4. Bird Island Basin

Padre Island National Seashore, TX

For those who live in Texas, there are some excellent beach camping options available down along the southern border as well! Located near Corpus Christi, TX, this is a great place to see the water and camp at the same time. You aren’t required to have a permit, and the spots are first come, first served, so you might have to arrive early if you want a spot during the popular summer months. This is a great place for boating and windsurfing, and you can even choose between RV and tent camping.

5. Cape Cod National Seashore

Barnstable Country, Massachusetts

Cape Cod National Seashore is a unique opportunity that not many can experience because only 100 vehicles every night get to camp in this gorgeous location. The best time to go is during the summer, but you might experience beach closures at any time. You must have a 4-wheel-drive self-contained vehicle that meets the toilet and holding tank requirements, meaning not everyone will be equipped to handle this opportunity. You must all have an off-road permit and should know how to drive on sand, change a tire, and even extricate a stuck vehicle. While on the Cape, you can enjoy swimming, biking, and tons of hiking trails in the swamps, marshes, and beaches. If you get a license, you can go fishing, and, with a permit, you can build a beach fire.

Before you go hiking, make sure to be 100% prepared by having enough water and food to last for your entire journey. Set up your tent while you are still at home to make sure it is still working properly and you still have all the necessary pieces. A few days before you go on your adventure, make sure to keep an eye on the weather, so there won’t be any surprises. You might want to consider packing a solar powered AM/FM radio like this NOAA Solar Weather Radio. It is an all-in-one tool that gives you all the basic components you need on a camping trip, including a flashlight and power bank that can charge four devices at once.

5 Tips For New Backpackers

Backpacking is a fun adventure activity that allows you to spend time outdoors while hiking and camping. It can help you break away from the hustle and bustle of the real world. It gives you a chance to see the camping world outside the car campground and see a different outdoor world. Once you decide to embark a multi-day backpacking trip, you have to remember that you must carry all your essential on your back in your pack. Here are a few steps to follow when planning your first backpacking trip.

Choose a short and accessible destination

For the first few hikes, choosing a quick, overnight hike that is nearby is a safer option. If you aren’t an experienced hiker, then you might not be prepared for the elevation gain. Look for something that is just a few miles round trip, and a few hundred feet of elevation, even if you think you can handle something more. Having the fully packed bag might slow you down more than you are expecting.

Pack essential clothes and gear

Look at the weather and the temperature to make sure you don’t have any surprises on the trail. You can consider borrowing or checking out thrift stores to save money at first, before buying more expensive gear once you realize what you truly need on the trail.

Some of the gear you should consider is:

  • Backpack (consider borrowing one first to see what you like)
  • 2-person tent that is rated for three seasons
  • Sleeping bag
  • Sleeping pad
  • Stove
  • Water treatment
  • Radio
  • Clothing, including base layers, hiking layers, hat, and insulation
  • Rain gear

Plan your meals

For the first couple of hikes, you might consider packing just-add-water meals or easy-to-cook options. Make sure to pack tons of snacks to help keep your energy level highs on the trail.

Make sure to take care of any wildlife precautions. Keep a respectful distance away from animals, and never come between large animals and their young. At night, keep food away from your tent, and consider using a nylon cord to hang it from a high tree branch or carrying a bear canister.

Prepare yourself for the trail

Do a few test runs with your fully loaded pack, shoes, and socks. Make sure you aren’t getting any blisters and that you can handle the backpack. Nothing ruins a trip faster than new gear that hasn’t been broken in yet. You should also take this time to familiarize yourself with your car. Put up your tent a few times, make sure the stove works, and try to filter water before you go. Review your map to make sure you know where you are going.

You should also consider the logistics of getting to and from the trailhead. Research to see if you will need a permit to park your car or at the campground.

Invite an experienced backpacking friend

Until you have more experience, consider inviting a good friend who can act as your guide and mentor. But, this step is the least necessary. You are more than capable of handling a trip on your own, but it is always nice to have a friend along for the ride! It might make the trip more fun and safer.

To be safe, always leave a trip plan with a family member or friend that includes information about where you are going and when you will be back. Good luck on your first backpacking trip!





Packing List For Camping In The Springtime

Although this is a wet time of the year around the country, springtime is one of the best times to go camping. Many of the parks are starting to bloom and blossom, and after a long winter, this is a welcomed sight.

However, while an early spring adventure is a great way to get out again, it does require a bit more planning because of the unpredictable weather. You might have to endure a few thunderstorms, but the beautiful flowers and budding trees make it worth the hassle.

Gear Checklist

If you are a regular camper, you most likely have a few standard items you always bring on your trips. Your packing list should always include a tent, a lantern or flashlight, toiletries, food, and a water bottle, regardless of the weather and time of year.

Because of the unpredictable springtime weather, there are two things to keep in mind when gathering your gear: pack to stay dry and warm. Here are a few items to consider for your early springtime expedition:


  • All-weather tent
  • Tarp – Put this on the ground or over your tent to help keep the moisture out.
  • Radio – We recommend our campers take a solar emergency survival radio when the weather might be unpredictable. A device like the NOAA radio warns you of changing weather patterns and will serve as emergency power and light source.
  • Backpack – We prefer ones that have an internal frame, and you should add a waterproof cover that easily wraps your pack and belongings to protect it from sudden showers.
  • Cold weather mummy sleeping bag – Aim for one that keeps you warm in 20-40 degree weather. While the days in the spring might be sunny, the temperature at night might dip much lower, especially if you are camping in elevation.
  • A sleeping pad that keeps you off the cold ground
  • Rope for hanging clothes to dry
  • Waterproof jacket with hood – you might also choose to add a bandana or hat to keep your hair and head dry.
  • Water-resistant, layered clothing – This way, you can add or remove clothing as you warm up during the day, and cool down at night. Look for clothing that is quick-drying and moisture-wicking. Packing a base layer of Merino wool keeps you warm and dry.
  • Wool socks – These help your feet dry quicker, which reduce the chances of uncomfortable blisters or chafing.
  • Waterproof hiking boots – Boots are useful for all seasons! To keep your feet warm and dry, pick up a high-quality pair of boots that fit you well. If you purchased new boots for the season, make sure to break them in, so you aren’t in pain the entire trip.
  • Flip flops – Wear these at night to give your feet a break from the boots, and give them a chance to dry out.

Spring Camping Hints

Make sure you are prepared for anything before setting out on your adventure. Here are a few things to do before you go camping for the first time this season.


  • Test your gear. Most people skip camping during the winter, so that means your equipment might have been gathering dust in your closet for the last couple of months. Make sure to check out your gear and look for any tears or holes that might ruin your trip. If you have to purchase a new backpack, boots, or clothes, test them out to ensure they don’t chafe you and the sizing is right. Set up your tent to make sure you remember how to do it properly if it has been awhile. By preparing beforehand, you can ensure that the camping trip goes as smoothly as possible and doesn’t have to be cut short due to gear problems.
  • Watch the weather. While the weather forecast can change quickly, you should still be keeping your eye on the weather. Knowing what to expect before you go can help you pack the proper clothing, and keep you from freezing during the nights. On the trail, consider bringing along a weather radio, so if the weather does turn dangerous, you can stay informed and make the safest decision.
  • Drink lots of water. When the weather is cooler, you might not be sweating as much, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t stay hydrated. Keep a water bottle handy and sip water all day long, even if you don’t think you need to.
  • Prepare for colder nights. Don’t be tricked by the weather forecast highs. When the sun goes down, the weather will turn chilly. Even if you don’t think you need to, pack a sleeping pad, a sleeping bag that keeps you toasty at night, and clothing layers you can add as needed.

While you do want to pack light, don’t skimp on warm, waterproof clothing. You don’t want the first springtime expedition to be miserable because you are cold and wet the entire time. Even if it doesn’t rain on you, the ground might still be soggy, with tons of puddles and mud on the trails.

Preparing is key and can make all the difference for a successful trip. Follow our checklist and tips and have a great first camp outing!