OKEMOS, Mich.— Summer is heating up and there is no easier way to keep cool than with a camping or RV excursion to a Michigan Association of Recreational Vehicles and Campground (MARVAC) campground. Many MARVAC campgrounds either have a lake, a pool, and sometimes both to cool off in.

“Camping in Michigan is already stunning but when you add a lake for kayaking, or a refreshing pool to relax in, there is just nothing better,” said Darren Ing, director MARVAC. While a quick dip is a sure way to chill out, here are a few additional ways to remain chill at the campground this summer:

Keeping your cool

  • Keep your RV, camper or tent cool by positioning under shade, if possible.
  • Take down your tent or folding camper during the day so heat doesn’t build up inside. A small fan will also help circulate air if you aren’t in an AC-enabled RV.
  • Use sunscreen all the time. Reapply sunscreen after any splashing, swimming or sweating—even on cloudy days.
  • Drink lots of water. Not just ice cubes, but actual water. Always bring more water then you expect to use—especially on an adventure.
  • Loose light colors clothes will help keep you cooler. A hat with a large brim will also help deflect the sun.

Packing the cooler

  • Prechill the cooler. Use a bag of ice to prechill the cooler prior and/or pre-chill (or freeze) what you put into the cooler.
  • Use ice blocks or packs and/or freeze water bottles. Once the water defrosts, drink it. Separate the ice from food with a cookie banking sheet.
  • Prepped meals take up less space in the cooler or RV refrigerator, produces less waste at the campsite, and makes meal preparation easier.
  • Eliminate cardboard and excessive packaging. Move items into zip-lock bags. Consolidate when appropriate.
  • Layer ice blocks or packs between food stuffs. Put items that need to remain coldest on the bottom, cushion with a layer of ice and repeat.
  • Take two coolers, one for beverages and another for food. Constant opening and closing of a cooler will compromise the temperature inside.

Be a cool camper:

  • Keep your campsite tidy.
  • Avoid walking through another camper’s site.
  • Respect quiet hours and limit excessive noise at night.
  • Don’t spread out beyond your designated campsite.
  • Never use nails or wires on trees as they can damage or kill trees.
  • Drive slowly through the campground, obey speed limits and check rules before riding dirt bikes, all-terrain vehicles, mopeds, go-carts and motorcycles.
  • Be sure to check in/out on time. Many campgrounds have a no early check-in and late arrival policies.

The Michigan Association of Recreation Vehicles and Campgrounds (MARVAC) is a statewide, nonprofit organization dedicated to encouraging growth in the recreation vehicle and private campground industries while contributing to the quality of Michigan tourism. For more information, visit MARVAC’s website, www.marvac.org. MARVAC, 2222 Association Drive, Okemos, Mich. 48864-5978; 517.349.8881.