Don’t forget your water carrier

by | Mar 25, 2024

One of the joys of camping is being able to explore the world of available kit, seeing it, wanting it, and convincing yourself that actually you really, really need it…

However, it’s fair to say that some things probably are important. You need kit to sleep in, to enable you to eat and drink, and a means to heat food and water, so it follows that you need something to carry the water in – but what?

  • Camping opens up a world of new kit to explore.
  • Some kit is desirable, other is necessary including a means by which to transport water.
  • Choosing between types of water carrier depends on your situation.

You’ve got your tent, your sleeping bag, and your stove and kettle, but unless you want to make repeated trips to the tap (wherever it may be) for enough water every time you fancy a cuppa or to top up your water bottle, you’re going to need something to transport water from tap to pitch.

Sounds simple so far, but there are all sorts of different water carrier designs available, and it may be that some are clearly more suitable for your needs than others. Among other things, it depends on how much room in the car you have, how many there will be in your camping party, and how well equipped your camp site is.

And the cost, whether you’re an experienced veteran who will get your money’s worth from investing in high end kit or a newbie who is very sensibly testing the camping water with a more budget item, is also likely to inform your choice.

Either way, it’s highly likely that whatever you choose, your water carrier will be made of plastic and be either rigid to maintain its shape, flexible to some extent, or completely foldable. The choice may depend on how much room you have for transporting gear and how long you’re planning on camping.

Obviously, you need a water carrier with a handle so you can carry it although some rigid models come with wheels and are designed to be pulled over the ground rather than carried, which might make transporting a decent amount of water a bit easier.

Collapsible water carriers can differ in rigidity with some very thin ones (almost like water bags) folding up very small – worth considering if saving weight is an issue. Others that are less minimalist but sturdier collapse to around the size of a large dinner plate and may suit you better if robustness is a higher priority than space. For those with a little more room to spare but still looking for a collapsible water carrier a flat-pack design that expands into a cube is a popular design.

Some water carriers can even double up as a cooler as well as a container. Obviously they’re great for keeping water cool and are pretty robust but come with the trade-off that they’re heavy (and quite pricey). However, they do come in different sizes.

The traditional jerrycan shape is still available as a modern plastic water carrier albeit with a convenient tap at the bottom in addition to the usual lid at the top. Available in different sizes, they are rigid, robust and (like the original) should last for a long time. If you’ve got room, they can even come with a set of wheels and handle for rolling across the ground.

With plenty of choice available a little bit of water carrier research should help you find the ideal design for your camping needs.