There’s no better time of year to enjoy camping with your friends and family than when cooler weather arrives. However, camping trips can easily turn glum if bothersome bugs are surrounding your site.

Mosquitoes, fleas, gnats, ants, wasps, chiggers and spiders tend to be the most common insects found at campgrounds. When picking a campsite, try to stay away from thick bushy woods, deep grass and stagnant ponds that are known for attracting insects – including mosquitoes, who use the standing water to breed.

Battling Bugs While Camping - helpful guidelines for safe camping practices that will help keep bugs away.

Keeping your camping site clean of leftover food and drink is also crucial to keeping harmful insects away. Several bugs, especially bees and wasps, are drawn to the sugary contents found in common camping foods. Make sure to keep food and beverages in tightly sealed containers, and throw away any garbage or excess trash in bins that are located at a reasonable distance from your site.

Another good way to keep bugs at bay is by starting a campfire (if the campground allows – be sure to check with the park rangers or campsite administrators first). The smoke will help keep insects like mosquitoes, wasps and bees at a distance.

Here are some other tips to keep bugs off when camping:

  • Use screen-lined tents and canopies, and remember to keep them closed at all times.
  • Cover up with bandanas, hats and long pants and sleeves to add another barrier for bugs and to stay cool.
  • Use bug spray with DEET according to the directions on the label. Look for varieties made specifically for camping.

Campers are bound to run into some insects while out enjoying the outdoors, but you should be able to ward off the majority of harmful insects by following these simple guidelines.

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