My daughter once told me that she loves nature- except for all the bugs! It's funny, only because it is so true! Camping tips to repel insects abound, but I've found the following 4 tricks to work when trying to banish bugs from your campsite.
Camping Tips to Repel Insects
While it's unlikely that you will completely banish bugs from your campsite, I've found these tricks are the most useful for keeping us comfortable and (mostly) bug free when camping.
Build a Smokey Fire
I've yet to meet anyone who enjoys heavy campfire smoke filling their campsite, but bugs hate the smoke more than you do! The key to using smoke to rid your campsite of bugs is choosing a wood with a nice burn that isn't too wet. Cedar wood works wonderfully if you have it available, otherwise a long burning wood like oak, maple, or birch work well. You can also increase the power of your smoke by adding a few herbs that bugs don't like including mint, rosemary, basil, bay leaf, or lavender.
Turn on a Fan
A nice breeze usually keeps bug from landing. It also helps keep you cool, which decreases sweat, which keeps you from being so attractive to insects. But a breeze isn't always a guarantee when camping so, if your campsite has electricity and you have the room available, pack a fan. Whether you sit in front of the fan or behind it, you'll find that the bugs will steer clear of the breeze.
Light a Torch
Tiki torches are really inexpensive and make any campsite look like a party! Buy a few, create a ring around your space, then use a bug repellent fluid for added benefit. The combination of fire, smoke, and scent of the repellent fluid (usually citronella) will keep many pests out of your campsite.
Use Avon Skin So Soft Bug Guard
You may have noticed that everything listed so far has been a natural repellent. As a camper with sensitive skin I have a hard time finding an insect repellent that won't cause irritation (and doesn't have a scent that repels me!) I have been really impressed with the Avon Skin So Soft Bug Guard line. All of their products are dermatologist tested and DEET-free, so they don't cause irritation. The scent is mild, not harsh, even in their strong repellent with Picaridin, which repels deer ticks as well as mosquitoes.
Another benefit of the Skin So Soft Bug Guard product is the inclusion of SPF in the Expedition and Water Resistant products. Dual purpose products mean one less item to weigh down my backpack and one less product to slather on during the day.