Various tactical camping essentials organized on a mat

Tactical Essentials for Your Next Camping Trip

When you’re in the field and reliant on the gear you packed in with, there are some tactical essentials your kit needs. Tactical survival gear gives you the tools you need to tame the wild, helping to make your camping trip more comfortable, more fun, and safer. Whether you’re digging jacks, setting up the tent, or just enjoying the peace and tranquility nature has to offer, tactical camping gear gives you tools that are ready for action. Make sure you’re ready for your next outing with equipment from the huge selection at Pennsylvania’s Largest Gun Show. 

Tactical? I’m Trying to Camp Here!

“Tactical” gets bandied around a lot in the Second Amendment community, and that means it tends to lose a bit of its meaning. When we talk about tactical essentials, we don’t mean tent poles that will help you stop terrorists from taking over Nakatomi Plaza (If you do make these tent poles, fill out a vendor application–see you at the show!). Tactical means that something offers the flexibility to be used for more than one purpose or situation. For example, tactical knives serve as both utility tools and self-defense weapons, while tactical vests are good at holding just about anything you need for any given loadout. 

Survival camping gear placed on a tree stump next to two yellow mushrooms

Not Your Standard Camping Gear

You won’t find a tent, sleeping bag, or beer cooler on this list. You take those anyway. While there may be some out there that give you a few additional features or benefits, we know you’re taking the basics when you set out to get away from it all. What we’re looking at are upgraded tactical camping versions of common tools to help you tame the great outdoors, and some tactical survival gear that you may be forgetting before venturing out into the wilderness.

Top Tactical Essentials for Your Camp Site

Tactical Knife

A good tactical knife is worth its weight in gold. It’s so useful, in fact, we’d suggest you take two. A folding tactical knife gives you a solid utility tool that fits easily in your pocket and is perfect for cutting, prying, or poking around the campsite or on the trail. A fixed-blade knife gives you an even stronger tool for defense, can help cut through the brush, trims bark off logs for kindling, and more. While the hollow-handled survival knife has long been a flea market staple, a better option is often a full-tang, solid-handled knife with a long, sharp blade accompanied by a more comprehensive survival kit in your pack or on your belt.


These tactical essentials do more than make short work of sticks and twigs. While perfectly adequate for light chopping, they also serve as self-defense tools, offer more leverage than a knife in some situations, can be used as an emergency hammer when turned flat-side, and the wide, relatively flat blade edge is good for not only cutting but also scraping or even cleaning and skinning game in a pinch.

Tactical Pack

Tactical pack loaded with survival gear sitting on the grass near a lake

A big part of any tactical survival gear loadout, your pack needs to hold the gear you’ll need, stored safely where you can get to it quickly. For tactical camping, that means it may have plenty of pockets and dividers to keep equipment organized, a loop to hold longer tools, like flashlights or your camp axe, and a design that sits high and distributes the weight across your shoulders for easier movement.


It’s not just for badass bracelets anymore! Paracord has earned its reputation as a tough go-to cord for tying, lashing, supporting, fixing, knotting, or weaving. Broken guy lines, a simple snare, or even a net suitable for fishing, trapping, or hammock napping can be constructed if you have enough of this strong, lightweight cord and some time to work your nimble fingers.

Tactical Flashlight

Flashlights and lanterns have always been popular camping essentials. Tactical flashlights take their utility a step further by offering easier one-handed operation, brighter, more energy-efficient lights, adjustable spot-to-flood patterns, and more–there are even some that burn hot enough to start fires and fry eggs. This is another piece of tactical survival gear you need to have at least two of. A smaller flashlight is perfect for a pocket, pouch, or even keys, while a larger, more powerful model can help you light up the night around camp. 

Camp Shove/Entrenchment Tool

A good shovel can dig holes for bathroom stops, help you recover stuck tent stakes, or even get a stuck vehicle back on the trail so you can head home. Upgraded models quickly become tactical essentials with sharpened points, saw blade edges, and features that allow them to take the place of a pick, axe, or brush-clearing machete in an emergency.

Pack Gun

Plenty of tactical camping enthusiasts will add a pistol, revolver, or take-down gun to their kit where allowed by law. When camping, it’s always smart to remember that you’re sharing space with wild animals who may be territorial or view humans–particularly small ones–as prey. While not meant for hunting, they can help provide food as tactical survival gear, and they may make the difference in a human-animal confrontation where running or avoiding an aggressive predator is no longer an option.

Get the Tactical Essentials You Need for Better Camping

When you step into one of our events, you’re entering a unique retail experience created at an exhibition hall near you to bring in vendors from across the country. There’s something for the whole family in our clean, well-lit shopping space, with on-site professional security provided. Get your list of tactical essentials together, and get ready for a fun shopping experience. Get your tickets online to your next Eagle Shows Gun Show today.

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