Camping and Outdoor Clothing for Mom and Kids

By The Women Bloggers member Mel Lockcuff of Adventures of Mel

When it comes to camping and spending time in the great outdoors, my family is all in. My husband and I have been camping since before we had kids, and we’ve continued the tradition with our boys. In fact, I think it’s safe to say we’ve all got the itch to plan another camping trip soon.

Throughout our years camping, hiking and exploring, we’ve learned a lot, specifically what to pack and what not to pack. When it comes to clothing, we’ve gotten a lot smarter about what we pack in our camping bags.

This list of clothing must haves works for Mom, Kids and even Dad. Just keep in mind the types of clothing and accessories you pack will ultimately depend on where you’re camping.


A good pair of hiking shoes are, in my opinion, the #1 must have for each member of the family. Think of it as an investment into your family’s feet. Feet deserve care and protection, especially considering they carry us everywhere we go. They need a good pair of shoes!

Sandals or water shoes are also wonderful to pack, but a good pair of hiking shoes will keep your feet dry and protect them from wear and tear on the trail and around the campsite, from dangers (like snakes and scorpions), and more.

We always spray our shoes with a waterproof spray, as well, to help give that added layer of protection; wet feet can lead to all sorts of problems.

Along with shoes, you may consider a few pair of moisture-wicking or wool socks.

Tops & Bottoms

When it comes to camping, I say comfort rules. Especially in the mountains where your campsite may be at a higher elevation, I prefer and recommend dressing in layers. Also, moisture-wicking or quick-drying fabrics are best.

A nice tank or thermal long underwear type of shirt works well as a bottom layer. Personally, I love a warm flannel shirt with layers underneath. T-shirts are always comfy and easy to pack, but you may want to avoid cotton fabrics.

Pack both long pants and shorts, as the weather can change on a dime. Again, think comfort for both camping and hiking. My guys love their cargo shorts, though I know they’re not for everyone. Whatever you choose for pants or shorts, just make sure you have plenty of pockets for whatever you may need to carry along with you. And for sleeping at night, a nice stretchy pair of sweatpants can easily replace pajamas.


I’m a simple girl with simple wants… My #1 recommendation for outerwear? A big ole comfy hoodie. When we camp in our tent at higher elevations, I’ve been known to go to bed in sweatpants, a hoodie (with layers underneath), and a stocking cap on my head. Again, remember… Comfort rules when camping. 

As for other outerwear, make sure you have a rain jacket or poncho and hats (both knit hats and brimmed hats) for everyone!

Other Accessories

Other accessories you’ll want to be sure to pack are sunglasses, a good, sturdy backpack, a wet/dry bag, and plenty of hair ties and hair bands. A girl can never have enough ways to tie her hair back, especially when lacking a shower over long periods of time. Even though it’s not technically wardrobe-related, I feel the need to recommend dry shampoo. Girl, if you’re headed to the great outdoors for a week (or even just a few days), get yourself a bottle of dry shampoo because it will make you feel like a whole new woman after days without a real shower, that’s all I’m going to say.

Finally, one last accessory every camper should pack is a headlamp. We finally invested in headlamps for each member of our family last year, and were we ever glad we did. A headlamp is something you’ll use every single night. It allows you to be hands-free, whether you’re trying to find something in the dark, make your way to the bathroom, change the baby’s diaper, or even set up camp in the dark. Whatever you do, don’t leave home without your headlamp.

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Packing up to head out for the weekend? What are your favorite wardrobe must haves for camping and exploring the great outdoors?