Are you the outdoors type? Love spending your time in nature? Don’t worry – you can still enjoy the great wide open by going fishing and even camping while pregnant.
For a lot of moms-to-be, pregnancy brings up a range of emotions, not all of which are positive. Being pregnant causes a great deal of stress and anxiety. For that reason, taking a camping trip presents a great opportunity to break free from the stress and the chaos.
Life changes can easily overwhelm us, especially major ones. Pregnant women have to tend to their physical and mental health. Spending some time outdoors reminds you to cherish and enjoy your journey. It reminds you to take your time, to take things slow.
Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.
– Lao Tzu
Still, camping while pregnant doesn’t sound particularly safe. Some people consider camping dangerous even without the pregnancy part.
So, is there a way to lessen the risks?
Is there a way to take precautions so as to enjoy your trip safely and comfortably?
In short, the answer’s yes, but you still have to mind the risks and dangers.
Knowing the risks and planning smartly and safely gives you a unique opportunity to breathe in some fresh air, away from the bustle of the city. Nature is healing, but it can also be dangerous if you’re not prepared, especially when you have a baby on the way.
Before we dive into the benefits of camping while pregnant – let’s talk preparation.
Planning for a Safe Camping Trip
As a pregnant woman, every breath inhaled amidst tall trees and chirping birds empowers you, and every breath exhaled releases tension and, little by little, makes you invulnerable to stress. As a mother-to-be, Mother Nature may even let you in on a few of her secrets.
However, to enjoy a stress-free camping trip, you have to prepare adequately.
What steps do you have to take? Well, there’s a lot to consider. Still, your first step should be to consult with your doctor before heading out.
A professional opinion goes a long way.
Make sure that it’s safe for you and your baby to take part in outdoor activities.
If you get the green light, start planning. Pregnant or not, the first thing you have to figure out is the location.
A good campsite for moms-to-be isn’t too remote, is easily accessible, has flat, easily traversable terrain and all the facilities you need, such as water and toilets.
During pregnancy, you want to avoid intense physical activities. So, make sure that you have transportation available to the location of the campsite. Additionally, avoid straining activities such as hiking. A nice relaxing stroll through the woods will do you just fine.
After you have determined the location of the campsite and means of access, plan for what you need to bring. As a pregnant woman, you want to make sure that you have everything you need to stay safe, warm and dry in regards to the duration of your stay.
So, what to bring? Well, the first thing that comes to mind are clothes and shoes. Pack safe and comfortable clothing and footwear suited for outdoor conditions. Also, don’t forget to pack extras in case of an emergency. If you’re traveling by car, feel free to overpack.
Better to have spares than to risk a ruined camping trip.
Make sure to bring enough blankets. No matter the time of the year, nights get cold.
Where will you sleep? Bring comfy camping gear. For moms-to-be, a quality camping mattress is basically a must. Other than that, you will need a camping tent with enough space for you and your partner (if they’re tagging along), and a pregnancy pillow, too.
For pregnant women, the best air mattress to bring on a camping trip is elevated. The additional height is a big plus because it makes it easier for you to get in and out of bed.
You want to make sure that you and your baby are safe and comfortable at all times.
What else do you have to consider?
Aside from a tall and spacious tent and a high quality air mattress, camping utilities and accessories are next in line. Now, since that covers a wide range of items, we can’t possibly cover them all, but we will list the essentials.
During the summer, it’s a good idea to bring a sun hat and sunscreen, especially if you plan on camping in the mountains.
While it’s usually a bit chiller atop a mountain, the air is thinner and cleaner, so there’s less protection against harmful UV rays and sunburn.
You will also want to protect yourself against insects and bugs. For pregnant women, it’s safe to apply insect repellant to their skin in order to protect themselves against bugs.
On top of that, bring a fully charged mobile phone (maybe even a satellite phone), in case of an emergency. Speaking of which, make sure that you have a first aid kit nearby.
Since pregnant camping includes a lot of physical activity, it’s a good idea to take into account your current physical limitations.
Regardless of whether you’re going with your partner or in a group, avoid carrying heavy loads and physically exerting yourself.
One thing we haven’t mentioned is, of course, food and drinks. Make sure to bring plenty of water to stay hydrated for the duration of the trip. Bring enough healthy and nutritious food options.
Camping food doesn’t have to be boring. If you have time, get creative.
Here’s a checklist of all the necessities mentioned, and more things to consider:
- A big, spacious tent.
- A high quality air mattress.
- Outdoor clothing and footwear.
- A sun hat and sunscreen.
- Insect repellant.
- A fully charged mobile phone.
- A portable charger.
- Adequate food options.
- Lots of water.
- A first aid kit.
- Personal hygiene essentials.
- A comfortable camping chair.
- A flashlight or a headlamp.
- A portable camping toilet.
- A multi-tool.
- A pregnancy pillow.
- A map of the area.
- Credit card or cash.
- Extra pillows.
- Anything you think you need.
Going camping while pregnant demands careful planning and execution. After you have prepared everything you need, turn your attention to risks, dangers and hazards that may potentially arise.
Prepare for the weather and always stay in close proximity to your car.
Have an emergency plan at the ready in case you need to go to the hospital.
In the end, camping while you’re pregnant can be a safe and unique experience, but you have a lot of safety factors to take into consideration. For expecting moms, nature is a perfect stress relief and a great opportunity to make some beautiful lasting memories.
Just make sure that you do your planning and preparation right.
Safety Tips for Pregnancy Camping
Spending time outdoors with the sun warming your face is one of the nicest feelings of being alive. Especially now, with a little baby on the way, such moments of clarity and serenity are invaluable.
Still, pregnant camping raises a lot of questions and concerns.
If you’re an outdoor enthusiast and staying home is just bumming you out, there’s no reason to confine yourself in a small space.
Pregnant women can safely enjoy camping – so long as you take all the necessary precautions to ensure you and your baby stay safe.
Here are a few camping tips and safety guidelines for you to follow:
1. Don’t exhaust yourself with physical activities.
It’s normal to feel tired and exhausted during pregnancy. However, your changing body requires extra care and attention. Prioritize minimizing physical strain. Avoid activities that are physically demanding, such as hiking, rock climbing, rafting and rappelling.
If you’re even the slightest bit in pain, stop. Listen to your body. If you’re going camping while pregnant, participate in activities that are easy on your body. For example, you can replace hiking with nature walks and fishing. You can socialize or simply enjoy the view.
Pregnancy camping is supposed to be fun and relaxing. If there’s any pain and discomfort involved at all, then you have to stop what you’re doing immediately and take a break.
2. Make sure to stay comfortable.
When you’re going camping during pregnancy, you have to plan and prepare in advance. Next to safety, staying comfortable is your highest priority – although the terms work interchangeably. In this case, staying comfortable is just as important as your safety.
Our tips for camping while pregnant can help you make the most of your trip.
First of all, consider the terrain of your campsite. As a pregnant woman, the terrain you sleep and walk on should be level and flat, traversable without any difficulty. It’s also important that we mention avoiding camping at high altitudes due to altitude sickness.
Equally, you want to avoid camping in extreme heat.
When you’re camping, it’s essential that you have enough clothing and blankets to keep yourself warm, dry and cozy. Most of all, if you plan to stay the night in the wilderness, sleeping on a high quality air mattress is essential. A sleeping bag is a big no-no.
A lot of moms-to-be make the mistake of under-prioritizing comfort when they’re going camping while pregnant. You have to make sure that you stay comfortable throughout the
whole trip. So, spare no expense in regards to gear. You need all the comfort you can get.
3. Stay hydrated and well-nourished.
The term ‘eating for two’ is somewhat misleading, but you need extra calories on a day-to-day basis. So, when you’re going camping while pregnant, you have to ensure that you have enough healthy food options to stay fed. Bring enough food to last the entire trip.
You can’t go camping pregnant – or at all – without water. Especially in warm weather, you need to have constant access to water so that you can properly stay hydrated.
If you plan on being a bit more active than usual, don’t forget to drink water often. Don’t forget to rest and relax whenever you need to and to participate in low-intensity activities, such as yoga or meditation as opposed to hiking across physically demanding terrain.
Bear in mind that you have a little baby growing inside you. So, if you want our best tips for camping while pregnant: relax and take frequent breaks. As opposed to your partner or your friends, you will get tired quicker. There’s no reason to exhaust yourself aimlessly.
Enjoy the nature, the views, the dance of sounds and smells. Pregnancy safe camping really means taking things slow, going at your own pace and listening to your body.
And if you’re going for a stroll, mind your step. Use trekking poles for extra balance.
4. Avoid sitting by the campfire.
When we’re talking camping trips, the image that immediately comes to mind is that of a bunch of friends hurled up around a campfire, roasting marshmallows and telling ghost stories. But, the fire and the smoke pose considerable risk for pregnant women.
While the risks may be low, you want to enjoy a trip as low risk as possible.
So, here’s what you need to know. Sitting close to the fire exposes you to smoke which contains particulates harmful for anyone – but especially expecting women. If the group is still insistent on lighting a campfire, then you want to sit as far away as possible.
Well, not to the point where you can’t enjoy the conversation – but you get the idea.
Another reason to steer clear of open flames is due to the heat. Pregnant women are vulnerable to dehydration. Overheating by the fire causes a lot of discomfort. Staying hydrated helps, but it’s best if you move away from the campfire to a safer location.
If you’re going camping while pregnant, ideally you shouldn’t be lighting a campfire with your partner or friends. However, if you still decide to do it, it’s important that you exercise precaution and follow our safety tips to reduce any negative health effects.
5. Prepare for morning sickness.
Plan on spending the night? Sleeping in a tent doesn’t have to be uncomfortable, but you have to prepare for morning sickness. Pregnant women commonly experience morning sickness, so there’s no reason to believe that it might skip this one adventurous night.
How do you prepare for it? Well, just the same as you would plan for it at home. Bring any necessary meditations and natural remedies. Depending on what your doctor prescribed, this ranges from anti-nausea medications to plain foods high in carbohydrates, like bread.
Just because you’re camping while pregnant doesn’t mean that you should neglect your diet. Continue eating small but frequent meals throughout the day; eating easy to digest and healthy food options helps with morning sickness.
Avoid strong and spicy foods.
To prevent motion sickness, make sure to drink water regularly.
On top of all of that – relax. Camping trips are fun even without strenuous activity. There’s so much to take in, so much to breathe in. Cherish it at your own leisure, your own pace.
6. Plan for emergencies.
A lot can happen unexpectedly on a camping trip. We don’t want to discourage you from enjoying your time in the great wide open, but it’s important to stay mindful of any potential risks and hazards. Precisely, it’s important to have an emergency plan in place.
Camping while pregnant should be done in safe and appropriate weather. However, weather can be unpredictable. So, have a plan ready if the weather suddenly turns sour.
While it’s best for you to avoid doing physical activities, you likely won’t pass up on an opportunity to take a stroll through the forest. Mind your step and don’t stray from the trail. With a little baby on the way, prioritize safety rather than giving in to wanderlust.
Always carry your mobile phone in case you have to make an emergency call.
Other than that, it’s best that your group sticks close to the campsite as much as possible. Since you’re pregnant and exposed to the elements, you want to take every precaution necessary to ensure that you enjoy a relaxing and risk-free adventure under the sun.
When to Plan a Pregnancy Camping Trip
So, what stage of your pregnancy is the best time to plan a camping trip? Well, with this kind of thing, it all varies on a case by case basis. The truth is – it depends. It’s a decision that you have to make for yourself, since only you know how ready you actually feel.
Being pregnant is physically, mentally and emotionally exhausting. Yes, camping while pregnant is sure to have a positive effect on your mental and emotional state, but what about the physical part? Nowadays, even getting out of bed takes breaking a sweat.
Before you start planning, reflect on your physical ability.
How do you feel?
Simply checking in with yourself goes a long way. Don’t feel bad if you’re not ready. Going for a camping trip while you’re pregnant isn’t something to scoff at. It takes a lot of effort.
Even though every woman experiences different symptoms and challenges during the three trimesters, there’s enough information to determine when it’s best to set camp.
Camping While Pregnant: First Trimester
From the first day of your pregnancy to the 13th week, the first trimester is filled with changes, both in the lifestyle that you live and your body that’s changing, growing, making room for a little human. During this time, it’s important to exercise self-care.
Camping while pregnant during the first trimester is considered safe. Still, if you’re pregnant for the first time, camping may not even cross your mind. But if you need to get away from the chaos of modern living, you have to make sure that you’re physically ready.
During the first trimester, your body endures a lot of stress.
From morning sickness to fatigue to all kinds of pregnancy-related symptoms, going on a camping trip right now may be too much for you and your pregnant body to bear. Take the time to think on it.
If you feel good, then there’s nothing to stop you from camping while pregnant.
Just make sure that you’re being honest with yourself. Keep in mind that you have to prioritize your baby’s safety. As such, you want to plan trips that aren’t too demanding, preferably somewhere close by. Avoid sleeping in nature if you feel hesitant about it.
Camping While Pregnant: Second Trimester
Pregnancy symptoms vary from woman to woman, so it’s hard to make a best guess in regards to when you should take a camping trip. That said, the second trimester is generally considered the safest and the best time to visit and savor the outdoors.
Why? Well, a lot of pregnant women claim that their morning sickness and general fatigue noticeably subside during the second trimester. Still, this may not be the case for you.
In fact, the symptoms may even feel worse, more exhausting and more mentally draining.
However, by the second trimester you’re already getting used to being pregnant. Some of your symptoms may lessen. You’re learning to handle them. You’re trying to focus on the journey.
Plus, you have more energy and a camping trip sounds wonderful right now.
Although this trimester might be considered the safest, it’s important that you listen to your body. Pay attention to your symptoms and don’t exhaust yourself unnecessarily.
Camping While Pregnant: Third Trimester
During the third trimester, your baby’s growing and developing more and more. You’re gaining more weight, finding it tiring even to walk.
This period is physically exhausting, and even though a camping trip sounds good, it’s best if you are realistic about it.
Right now, you need to take it easy. As you may experience increased fatigue during the third trimester, exhausting yourself physically should be avoided. Instead, focus on practicing self-care and low-intensity physical activities in the safety of your home.
All things considered, pregnant camping makes for a relaxing experience that creates a lot of special, lasting memories. Reconnecting with nature helps you handle the stress of pregnancy. Not to mention that it strengthens the bond you share with your little baby.
Enjoying the great outdoors is always a good idea – but you have to exercise caution.
With our safety tips and guidance, camping while pregnant becomes a piece of cake. Still, there are certain physical demands to it. Be honest with yourself as to whether or not you can handle it. Ask yourself how do you feel. Make sure that you’re physically ready.
By following our advice, you can plan a safe and comfortable experience for yourself. Just make sure to remember to prioritize safety. Above all else, if you have any doubts, don’t hesitate to consult with a medical professional as to the precautions you have to take.
So, if you feel ready and able, get out there and let the fresh air dispel your worries. Feel the blooming of flowers around you – the one blooming inside you – and let it inspire you.
Mother of three and a primary school teacher. I’ve always loved being around children and helping them, so I chose my path as a teacher. It is sometimes hectic with three children, but I am 100 percent into it and wouldn’t change it for anything in the world.