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Maximizing Space: 11 Storage Hacks for Car Camping

overlanding jeep gladiator with rooftop tent on top of mountain

Camping out of a car or truck can be a great way to explore the outdoors while still having the convenience and comfort of a vehicle. However, maximizing space can be a challenge, especially when it comes to packing all the necessary gear and supplies for a comfortable and enjoyable camping experience. In this blog, we'll go over some tips and products that can help you make the most of your space and simplify the camping experience.

Utensil storage bag hanging from truck

A utensil bag is a great way to keep all your kitchen utensils organized and in one place. Look for a bag with multiple compartments and pockets to keep everything from forks and knives to cooking utensils and spices. Some bags will come with a set of utensils, saving you the headache of piecing a set together. We have run three different utensil bags so far, but we're currently using the Front Runner Camp Kitchen Utensil Set.

girl pulling storage tote out of truck bed

Storage totes are an essential item when camping out of a car or truck. They are perfect for storing clothes, food, toiletries, and other items that need to be kept organized and easily accessible. Look for totes that are durable and have handles for easy carrying. We us the Front Runner Wolf Pack Pros because they've been water and dust proof. The totes also attach directly to our roof rack, which saves a ton of space in the bed of our Jeep Gladiator.

man opening waterproof duffle bag

Waterproof duffel bags are a great option for storing gear that needs to stay dry, such as sleeping bags, tents, clothes, towels and electronics. Look for bags that are made from high-quality materials and have a waterproof seal to keep your gear safe and dry. The Front Runner Typhoon Bag was used as our closet for our trip to Alaska in the summer of 2023. The bag has transitioned well to the wet Fall months to the snowy winter months, as well.

girl adjusting propane tank mounting hardware on roof rack

A roof rack is a great way to add extra storage space to your vehicle. Look for a rack that is easy to install and can hold a variety of gear, from bikes and kayaks to storage containers and coolers. The Jeep runs two rack systems, one roof rack and one bed rack. Both racks are from Front Runner, as it integrates all the pieces of gear we run from Front Runner seamlessly. Custom attachments secure items like our rooftop tent to our storage totes to our water container to the racks. Truly a match made in heaven!

girl filling container with electric faucet on swing away bumper on the back of truck

When camping, it's important to have access to plenty of clean water. Look for a large water container that can hold enough water for your entire trip. Make sure the container is durable and has a secure lid to prevent leaks. We use the Dometic GO water jug and faucet combo and can't speak highly enough about it. The design is far more durable and lightweight than anything else we've used.

girl pulling out truck bed slide from overlanding Jeep Gladiator

If you have a truck, a truck bed slide is a great way to access gear stored in the back of your truck. Look for a slide that is easy to install and can hold a variety of gear, from coolers and storage containers to camping equipment and supplies. We use the medium size Front Runner cargo slide in the Jeep.

three drawer storage system for vehicle interior

A drawer system for your vehicle's interior is a great way to keep gear organized and easily accessible. Look for a system that is easy to install and can hold a variety of gear, from clothing and food to camping equipment and supplies. There are a number of companies that make interior drawer options, but we can vouch for Front Runner's quality. Be sure to check out the options they have for your vehicle!

man drinking from metal reusable water bottle on top of mountain

Reusable water bottles are an environmentally friendly option for staying hydrated while camping. Look for bottles that are durable and have a secure lid to prevent leaks. Our go-to bottle has been the Dometic Thermo bottle because of the interchangeable lids!

girl cooking with compact cook stove, electric fridge, water container and electric water faucet on top of mountain

An electric fridge is a great alternative to traditional coolers that require ice. Look for a fridge that is compact and energy-efficient, and can keep food and drinks cold for an extended period of time. Dometic electric fridges are what we run in our Jeep Gladiator. We run the CFX 45 liter fridge for shorter trips (one to three nights) and the dual zone CFX 75 liter for longer trips. The vehicle size, duration of trips and number of people you'll be feeding will all contribute to your decision making when choosing a fridge.

cooking pancakes on compact cooking stove

Compact cook stoves are a great option for cooking meals while camping. They take up less space than traditional BBQs and are easy to transport. Look for a stove that is lightweight and can be easily assembled and disassembled. We upgraded to the Front Runner CADAC cooking stove this year and have absolutely loved it. The aluminum non-stick cooktops mean we don't have to bring the heavy, dirty cast irons with us all the time.

man and woman standing on mountain top during sunset

High-quality synthetic clothing is a great alternative to bulky cotton clothing. Synthetic materials are lightweight, durable, and dry quickly, making them perfect for outdoor activities. Look for clothing that is breathable and moisture-wicking to keep you comfortable and dry while camping. Our favorite brand is Beyond Clothing. They have a variety of pieces that are perfect for every season!

*This post contains affiliate links, so we earn a small commission when you make a purchase through links on our site at no additional cost to you. These funds help fuel our adventures, which we love sharing with you!

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