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I am excited at the prospect of helping you to independently and comfortably camp and travel safely when you may not have thought it was possible.

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Welcome to Set To Camp - where I aim to help families, beginners and anyone looking for tent camping information all in one place and to without the trial and error.

This website and our Camping Kickstart Program really started out as a way to help urban families to experience the many joys of camping just like any other family. The problem is, unlike in the good old days, many families are living in smaller properties, with ever decreasing backyards, if indeed there is one. 

Check out the freeways heading out of the cities at the start of a summer holiday period or long weekend and you will see plenty of camping families, but they are mostly towing something - trailers, camper trailers, caravans or RV's. There are not many that don't. In fact, at a recent very popular camping holiday park, less than 10% of sites appeared to be "trailer free". 

That's where I step in! This site, as well as my member only portal, The Campus, is aimed at helping families to equip themselves for comfortable camping and safe travelling without the need for any kind of trailer, including choosing the right camping gear and the right car as well as packing it safely.

While I "bang on" about camping trailer-free all of the time, much of the information on this site and in The Campus would be of interest to anyone wanting to simplify their camping, lighten their load and save some time and money along the way. 

So, whatever type of camping you enjoy, I love having you here.

Who Am I?

Hi, my name is Joanne and am delightedto bring you Set to Camp, a unique resource to help families and beginner campers to camp comfortably and safely without the need for any kind of trailer or RV.

I'm a trailer-free camping obsessive! I have a background in financial and business management and corporate governance, and a desire to transfer those skills to the campsite. 

Where it all began

Our very first family camping ordeal oops trip happened over 12 years ago.

Upon the arrival of our son brought on the unexpected urge to take him camping, and indeed to become a camping family, whatever that meant.

Perhaps related to repressed childhood memories of the excited look on my best friend's face as she disappearing for the summer with her family on their annual camping getaway (without me).

Which, upon the arrival of our son, was something we in turn hoped for him.

But even before we left, the vision of an all smiling carefree family toasting mashmallows around the campfire seemed a far cry from the reality.

Where to start, what to buy, how to camp with a baby, will it all fit in our car, and will it all fit in the spare room! And don't get me started on how long it took to decide on which tent to buy, let alone everything else.

And, to add insult to injury, beginners luck didn't go our way either...
... involving a week-long RECORD rainfall event on our first attempt in our brand new but totally inadequate tent for the conditions.

Certainly, the beautifully sunny evening depicted in the tent marketing material didn't come with the tent.

Surely it didn't need to be that much of an effort, AND time consuming, AND logistically challenging as urbanites, AND full of regret buys before we even finished our first camping trip.

But despite our early camping challenges, my husband and I wanted for our son what we both had in our childhood, even if it was just for a few weeks of the year.

And that was the fun filled adventures, time away from screens and other distractions, and the freedom to roam uninhibited with our friends, as long as he was back for dinner.

Even a few grazed knees and stubbed toes (a right of passage through childhood) would be expected and catered for in our first aid kit, topped off, of course, with some consoling and cuddles.

And so we persisted...

To the point where, after a few years, our camping knowledge and confidence grew, we had a pretty neat little setup and a new wagon to carry the load.

Packing that wagon with that load was an ongoing challenge, as was pitching that load, but nevertheless it was all ultimately more than worth it

Then, one day, our son announced he want to bring a friend.

AND, I thought, his clothes, bedding, chair and possibly even a bike as well!

We were in a dilemma.

With a car not big enough, we had no interest in getting a bigger one for the three of us just for the few weeks of the year we were camping.

We also had no room to store a trailer in our inner city abode, and didnt particularly want to hire one.

Then I recalled that friend many years ago, left behind and scarred for life 🙂

It was at that moment that I recalled the brand new state of the art camper trailer our friends had purchased recently - the stainless steel slide out kitchen, the loads of storage space, the inner spring mattress and the ease with which it could be set up and packed down in 5-10 minutes.

I considered how purposefully it had been designed for efficiency, speed, comfort etc.

Whereas my setup was made up of random buys, store bargains, a few hand me downs, and bulky items located from around the house.

There was absolutely no cohesion or plan at all, and I could see that a lot could be improved on.

So, with the motto of where there is a will there is a way, and the expectation that we could not only continue our camping tradition, but perhaps camp more often, I bit the bullet and went back to the drawing board.

I removed what we didn't need, replaced bulky and heavy items, looked at how to better utilize the roof racks and how to better pack the car, I revamped the camp kitchen, and I streamlined our pitching and packing up processes.

While I was at it, I even greened it up with some eco-friendly ideas.


More importantly though, the safety aspect of transporting four people and their camping gear without the assistance of any kind of trailer became a real challenge.


Our further modified camping setup really grew from our son's simple and reasonable request to invite a friend, and has inspired the creation of this website to help others experiencing similar challenges as well as other barriers to camping.

I've always really enjoyed checking out the latest gear and working out our optimum trailer-free camping setup, and I get a real buzz out of finding solutions to even the smallest of challenges. I hope to have a bit of fun with this website, but more importantly, I are excited at the prospect of helping you to independently and comfortably camp and travel safely when you may not have thought it was possible.

Family tent camping setup



Our further modified camping setup really grew from our son's simple and reasonable request to invite a friend, and has inspired the creation of this website to help others experiencing similar challenges as well as other barriers to camping.

I’ve always really enjoyed checking out the latest gear and working out our optimum trailer-free camping setup, and I get a real buzz out of finding solutions to even the smallest of challenges. hope to have a bit of fun with this website, but more importantly, I am excited at the prospect of helping you to independently and comfortably camp and travel safely when you may not have thought it was possible.

Our camping Code

Comfortable, safe and responsible camping:

  • We care about the environment and aim to leave no trace
  • We aim to buy well and buy once
  • We are considerate of local cultures and communities, fellow campers and our hosts
  • We are safety and budget conscious, and resourceful
  • We love the great outdoors and enjoy the simple pleasures
  • We like to have fun and focus on family and friends and meeting new like-minded people