The last thing you want to prepare for on a camping trip is being chased down by an ax murderer, but if you’ve ever told people you want to go camping on your own, they might have thrown this out there as a possibility.
While there are some precautions to take before camping solo, especially as a woman, you shouldn’t let that stop you from going ahead with it.
Is solo female camping safe? A female traveler can camp on her own if she chooses to, as long as she does it safely and is prepared for all of the possibilities.
The smartest safety measures to adhere to are staying in an area you know, setting up a tent at a developed campground, and having a plan in place for everything from wild weather to emergencies.
If you’re a single woman wanting to go camping on your own, there should be nothing standing in your way of following your dream.
However, you’ll need to be prepared for the trip and follow some safety precautions that ensure it’s done the right way, so use our helpful guide to show you what to do.
Is Solo Camping a Good Idea for Women?
As a woman, there are plenty of things that people tell you are off-limits to your gender, but camping shouldn’t be one of them.
There’s no reason why a female camper can’t enjoy the wilderness on her own and enjoy some solitude, but that doesn’t mean just setting up a tent in the middle of nowhere and hoping for the best.
Solo camping offers a lot of benefits but it also comes with some risks, and when you combine that with being a woman, the risks are even greater.
On top of the usual concerns like unpredictable weather and getting lost in the middle of nowhere, you also have to think about the threat of predators, and that doesn’t just mean the local wildlife.
Thankfully though, there are plenty of things you can do to combat these risks, and most of it can be achieved with some careful planning.
Whether it’s your first time heading out alone or you’re a seasoned solo camper, you can make the most of the adventure without any of the downsides.
The Benefits of Solo Camping
When most people envision a camping trip in their heads, they’re probably thinking of spending their nights huddled around a campfire with their friends laughing and telling stories.
However, camping on your own can be even more enjoyable than this, and offers the following unique benefits:
Peace and quiet: Getting into the wilderness is usually peaceful in itself but if you’re traveling with others it can be anything but. You’ll get a true sense of calm and have only the sounds of nature around you when you take a solo camping trip.
Learning experience: On an average camping trip you usually pick up a few skills along the way, but when you’re thrown into the deep end on your first solo camping trip, you’ll learn even more. Having nobody but yourself to rely on means you’ll learn new skills fast and find that you’re more capable than you ever gave yourself credit for.
Freedom to do what you want: When you’re the only one on the camping trip, you come up with the schedule. No more will you have to do what someone else wanted to just to appease the crowd as you can make your very own plans, even if that means spending the day sleeping in the tent.
Stress relief: Camping in itself is said to be a wonderful stress reliever and when you combine it with the fact that you’re doing it alone, it’s even more effective. You’ll come back feeling refreshed and happier than when you left, so it’s a great pick me up.
Potential Risks of Solo Female Camping
Any camping trip comes with benefits and risks, but when you’re going it alone, you need to be able to minimize these risks without anyone’s assistance.
When planning and while camping, consider these potential issues that you need to be ready for.
Attacks from predators: Be it human or animal, the possibility of running into a predator while camping is there. When you’re alone, it can seem even more frightening, and without the backup of your friends, you’ll need to fight whatever it is that’s attempting to attack you on your own.
Injuring yourself: Camping leads to injuries like rolled ankles and broken arms, as is the nature of these types of outdoor activities. If you require first aid and it’s beyond the scope of what one person can do on themselves, you could be in trouble.
Getting lost: Even camping with a group causes people to get lost but if you’re the only one there, you won’t have anyone else’s knowledge of the area to rely on. Although it might be helpful to not have too many people trying to lead the way, you might be wishing for some companionship if you do get lost.
Becoming sick: If you suddenly become ill with food poisoning or the flu, you’ll be alone and without assistance. Depending on how sick you are, this could make it hard for you to travel back to civilization and you may be forced to stay at the campsite until you’ve recovered.
Problems with your gear: Whether you’ve purchased a tent that can’t be put up by one person or you forget to bring along an important supply, there’s nobody there to help you when you’re solo camping. Where you could usually rely on someone else to assist or have a backup, it’ll be all on you to cover the equipment.
Preparing for a Solo Camping Trips
A good camping trip only turns out that way because it’s been carefully planned, and this is true whether you’re going it alone or with a large group.
Preparation is key when it comes to anything outdoors including camping, hiking, or a visit to the beach, but if you only have yourself to rely on, it’s even more important.
To plan for a camping trip as a single woman, choose a campsite that’s in an area you know, and find one that has facilities on site.
This will ensure fewer issues, especially while you’re brand new to solo camping, and it makes for a safer experience as there’ll be other campers close by in case anything goes wrong.
Some states and camping locations are more popular than others for camping, so you want to stick to the more populated areas.
Once you gain some confidence with your solo camping skills, you can venture out a little further, but it’s still advisable to stay near others for an added level of protection.
Secondly, your camping list needs to be flawless, so spend a lot of time preparing your gear and thinking about what you need.
You’ll want to account for all of the usual contents of a camping kit but with emphasis on the fact that you’ll be alone, so think about lightweight tents and cooking supplies for one.
Finally, share the details of your trip with friends and family so that someone always knows where you are and what you plan on doing.
Inform them of the location you’re headed to and when you’re coming home, and that way they’ll be able to alert the authorities if you don’t return when you’re supposed to.
Tips for Minimizing the Risks
Camping is a learning experience, no matter how you do it, but we still want to do whatever possible to make it less of a hazardous one.
These are a few tips you can follow to minimize the usual risks and ensure you’re prepared before setting off on a camping trip alone.
Stay around others: If you haven’t already booked a camping spot, find somewhere in a developed campground that’s close to families. This will give you an ally nearby in case bears or other types of predators present themselves.
Have a complete camping kit: Spend weeks preparing your camping kit with everything you need, including first aid, cooking gear, communications and navigational tools, and candy bars. Go over your list multiple times and tick it off so you’re certain you haven’t forgotten a thing.
Test out the equipment before you go: With your camping cookware and tent sorted, you’ll want to make sure they’re functional and can be operated by one person. Set up the tent in the backyard and note any issues, and try cooking something without using your indoor cooking facilities.
Learn basic first aid: Without others to rely on, you’ll be responsible for administering basic first aid on yourself if needed. Prepare with a course on first aid and find one that specifically covers solo first aid, so you can treat things like snake bites and sprained ankles in the worst-case scenario.
Be ready to fight off predators: Having some form of weapon or self-defense tool is a must for a single female camper, but make sure it matches the situation. Something small and concealed like a knife is best, as long as you know how to weld it safely and effectively.
Improve your camping skills: Don’t wait until you’re on your first camping trip to learn the basics. If you feel unsure about things like using a camp kitchen, setting up a tent, washing your clothes without running water, or filtering water for drinking, spend some time practicing them at home before you head off.
Use GPS: Take some form of GPS location device on you and a flare or beacon, in case you need to get attention. As well as telling others where you’ll be, this guarantees you won’t get lost even if you can’t find your way.
Seeing the World Solo
Solo camping doesn’t have to be terrifying, especially for a woman, and when you get it right, it’s one of the most amazing experiences you’ll ever have.
As long as you prepare for the trip ahead and know how to mitigate the risks, camping as a single woman is empowering and enlightening, so it should be on everyone’s bucket lists.
There’s no harm in taking a solo camping trip if that sounds up your alley, but with a long list of things that can go wrong in the wilderness, it pays to be prepared.
We’ve answered some of the more commonly asked questions about camping that can give you the basics to start planning your next adventure.
What Is Stealth Camping?
The act of stealth camping means camping somewhere and attempting to not be noticed by others, and it can be done both legally and illegally.
With this type of camping, you make minimal noise and lay low while you’re there, but it’s not recommended to do it in places where you wouldn’t already have permission to camp.
Do Rangers Check Campsites?
Campsites situated on public grounds like national parks and gardens are regularly checked by rangers.
Their role is to ensure everything at the campsite is in good condition as well as assist visitors with any questions or concerns they have, so they can be a reliable source of help if you’re camping alone.
What Is a BLM Campground?
A BLM campground stands for Bureau of Land Management, and it means a public land that is undeveloped and has various camping opportunities on it.
Camping at a BLM site is better suited to those wanting solitude as there’s little chance you’ll run into other campers, as you do at a more developed campground.
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