Easy Peasy Car Camping Weekend: Treat Yourself

Sometimes we all need a break from the craziness of life, epic adventures included! Sometimes we just need an easy peasy car camping weekend. Some frills, some simple pleasures, lots of relaxing. A weekend of treat yourself vibes.

The other week, I was feeling this way and decided to head out to my nearest National Park for a weekend of car glamping. Based in Tucson, I spent the weekend in Saguaro National Park. This park is stunning and I usually spend my time there hiking and enjoying a healthy dose of Type II Fun. But on this trip, I just wanted to take it easy. My soul needed some TLC and I don’t mean chasing waterfalls!

I got to the campground on Friday and spent two days relaxing to the max. Watching birds and eating snacks. Soaking up incredible views and enjoying the solitude of nature without pushing myself to do a single thing. It was the best! I headed home on Sunday afternoon feeling refreshed and ready to take on the week.

Today I wanted to share some of the gear that helped to facilitate my relaxing time. Gear can make a massive difference in the whole easy peasy car camping weekend thing, so check out what helped to boost my mellow weekend below. And may I just say, please give yourself the permission to go outside and do nothing once in a while. It’s good for you.

Check Out My Favorite Relaxing Car Camping Gear Below

Paka Joggers & Cardigan

I love cozy clothes and found the Paka Everyday Joggers and cardigan to be super duper comfy cozy. Especially in the cool evening when I watched the sun setting on a sea of mighty saguaros. I didn’t feel like wearing the typical base layers, as I didn’t need to pack light. And let’s face it! I felt like being cute. This outfit was practical for an outside weekend, but stylish for a casual time kicking around the park.

I like wearing Paka wool clothing. They’re a cool company that sources alpaca wool ethically and they use organic pima cotton where it makes sense to do so. They support the folks supplying their fabrics and that’s a big deal to me. To add a cherry on top, the clothing they make is modern and beautiful.

See the Paka Cardigan

Rumpl Puffy Saguaro National Park Blanket

I needed a blanket to keep me cozy overnight and of course that meant I was bringing my Rumpl Puffy Saguaro National Park Blanket. Ask any Southern AZ resident what their favorite tree is and I promise you we will all declare Saguaro! When Rumpl released this blanket I was probably the first person to pick it up. It’s so cute and is perfect for car camping in the park.

A reason I really like Rumpl puffy blankets is because they’re machine washable and I am a mess! Any other people here incapable of taking a sip without spilling? Just me? Okay then. This blanket is easy to take care of and holds up over years of getting dragged through cholla forests to witness the sunrise.

See the Rumpl Puffy Saguaro National Park Blanket

HOKA ONE ONE Ora Recovery Mule

When I’m having a chilled out, easy peasy car camping weekend I need comfy shoes that offer a bit more protection than sandals offer. But there is no way I’m about to lace up! Behold the HOKA ONE ONE Ora Recovery Mule. These slides are beyond comfortable and will make your paws happy. I like that they’re really breathable, but still offer a bit of protection from rocks and cactus pokes.

There are some other brands that make a similar style of shoe of course, but none of them are as comfortable as the Ora Recovery Mule. I mean, they have the word recovery in their name, for crying out loud. They really are a treat for your feet!

See the HOKA ONE ONE Ora Recovery Mule

Bajio Prescription Sunglasses

This next item is for everyone who needs eyewear to see things! I usually wear contacts on adventures and glasses when I’m relaxing. So car camping can be a little bit of a toss up for what to do as far as seeing goes. But on my relaxing car camping trip, I wanted to sport glasses to give my peepers a break. This is where the treat yourself aspect of the weekend truly came in, when I busted out my Bajio Prescription Sunglasses! These are really high quality sunglasses that offer prescription perfection.

I wear non-prescription Bajios on epic adventures and did not want to downgrade the sunglasses I wear simply because I need prescription lenses. When I first decided to have a pair of RX sunglasses made, I was a little hesitant because it felt extremely extravagant. As it turns out, they’re life changing and they help to give my eyes a break while keeping them safe from the sunshine. I will never ever go back to using a lower quality pair of prescription sunglasses. The customer service I got while ordering these ensured they would fit my face properly and that the lenses would line up with my eyes. The quality build is super noticeable.

See the Bajio Prescription Sunglasses

Bakcou Scout Ebike

During my car camping weekend, I did want to explore the park a little bit, but I wanted to be mellow about it. So I brought my Ebike along! It’s a Bakcou Scout and it is seriously awesome. It’s capable on the Sonoran Desert’s twisy gravel roads and it has a battery range that allows me to do full loop drives to take in all the sights they offer. On a lazy Saturday afternoon I did a full loop ride of the park, pulling off at every glorious view to soak up the peaceful vibes. It was the perfect time and helped me decompress more than a simple campground walk would have allowed.

Ebikes are allowed anywhere cars are allowed in National Parks and National Monuments. They are not allowed on trails, but neither are regular bikes. I like to use my Bakcou Scout to get around the campground too. I don’t always feel like walking 10 minutes to use the restroom. Sorry not sorry! Easy peasy car camping weekends are all about doing nothing and sometimes a two minute Ebike ride is super clutch.

See the Bakcou Scout Ebike

Black Diamond Moji Charging Station Lantern

I love do-it-all gear and an item I’ve been loving this spring is the Moji Charging Station Lantern from Black Diamond. This is a super powerful lantern that has long-lasting batteries. It can be dimmed to whatever brightness you prefer and best of all, it can charge up your electronics while lighting up your car. Or tent, if you find yourself ground-bound.

This little lantern has nice sturdy hooks so it can be hung overhead. It’s max light time is a whopping 50 hours, which is awesome. There are a lot of lanterns on the market and this one is my favorite for car camping when I want to keep things mellow. I truly do love the dimmer on the Moji.

See the Black Diamond Moji Charging Station Lantern

Roark Bless Up Dress

Heat is a serious thing in the Sonoran Desert and even though the evenings are quite cool, the days get super hot! When the temps hit the triple digits, I prefer to wear a loose fitting, breathable dress. There are a lot of options for casual and cute dresses fit for car camping. My favorite these days is Roark’s Bless Up Dress.

The fabric of this dress is technical perforated fabric that’s quick drying and comfortable. You can feel the breeze blow through it and it even has pockets! It packs down quite small too, so it wont take up much room in your go-bag.

See the Roark Bless Up Dress

Luno AIR Car Camping Mattress

No easy peasy, comfy cozy car camping trip would be possible without a reliable air mattress to sleep on. Luno’s Inflatable Car Air Mattress is my go-to in this department. It inflates in just a couple minutes and stays inflated for days. So you never have to awkwardly re-inflate your bed right before laying down for the night. This air mattress is made to fit your specific vehicle and you choose your make and model at checkout. This mattress also rolls up pretty small and stashes away in its handy-dandy stuff sack.

See the Luno Inflatable Car Air Mattress

Helinox Origami Tote

I love a good tote bag! I think we all love a good tote bag at this point, right? Helinox makes a fabulous one called the Origami Tote. Not only is it spacious and comfortable to carry, it unfolds to become a mat. This is useful in the desert as a place to sit, a place to stand and as a little space to put on your shoes as a car camping doormat of sorts. Helinox says it makes a great picnic mat, but it’s a lot more versatile than that if you find yourself in cactus-filled terrain. I use this mat a lot for kneeling on the ground when I’m taking photos and it folds right back up when I’m finished.

See the Helinox Origami Tote

Mystery Ranch 3 Way 18 Expandable Briefcase

If like me, you enjoy hauling just a few bags of gear instead of lots and lots of bins and such, you’ll love this item. It’s a briefcase! It’s a tote bag! It’s a suitcase! It’s… okay I’ll stop. It’s the Mystery Ranch 3 Way 18 Expandable Briefcase. I load this thing up with my clothing, electronics and bathroom kit for car camping. Everything has it’s place, everything is well protected. This is a do-it-all bag that can hold way more than you’d imagine. Best yet, it’s made by Mystery Ranch! Which means it’s burly and made with high quality materials that’ll last a lifetime.

If I choose to unpack my car camping setup for a longer stay, I like to us this expandable briefcase for meandering around campgrounds. It can work comfortably for biking around as well. When I’m not using it for car camping, my husband uses it for work! So needless to say, this is a clutch piece of gear no matter what you’re getting up to!

See the Mystery Ranch 3 Way 18 Expandable Briefcase

All images courtesy respective brands, All Rights Reserved.

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Deirdre Denali Rosenberg

Deirdre Denali is a wildlife conservation photographer and outdoor writer based in Tucson and the San Juan Mountains. She is a big fan of type II fun and loves gear! To check out some of Deirdre's work, check out her IG! Instagram.

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