How To Upgrade Your Camping Cocktail Hour: 6 Fun Ideas

How-To Guides

Two men holding a cooler to their campsite and two women greeting them

When you go camping, one of the best parts is sitting around the campfire and enjoying a few drinks with your friends. But if you're getting bored of the same old beers and wines, it's time to upgrade your cocktail hour!

In this blog post, we will share some delicious and fun ideas for alcoholic beverages you can enjoy while camping. Let's get started!

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1. Incorporate Natural Ingredients

Moscow mule in copper mugs

Since you’ll be drinking in a natural setting, it’s only right that your cocktails have an abundance of natural ingredients. Technically, all alcoholic drinks come from natural components like wheat and corn, but we’re mainly talking about the mixers and garnishes.

Here are some cocktails that include some unique natural ingredients:

  • Mojito: Rum, lemon-lime soda, and mint leaves.
  • Pine Cone Punch: Rum, pineapple liqueur, and pineapple juice.
  • Hot Toddy: Whiskey, honey, and lemon juice with a cinnamon stick garnish.
  • Maple Leaf: Bourbon, lemon juice, and maple syrup.
  • Apple Cranberry Moscow Mule: Vodka, ginger beer, sparkling apple juice, cranberry juice, and cranberries for garnish.
  • Cinnamon Maple Whiskey Sour: Whiskey, lemon juice, maple syrup, and a pinch of cinnamon.

Cocktails with berries, leaves, juices, and syrups are delicious, fun to make, and will help you feel more in tune with your surroundings. They will also make cleanup easier because you can eat, repurpose, or discard the leftover ingredients without harming the environment.

2. Bring a Travel Bar Set

Travel bar set

You could bring a full mixology kit to the campsite to make the cocktails properly, but lighter and more practical travel bar sets are available. They contain all the necessary tools and will take up less space in your backpack. The most experienced campers know how to keep their gear sweet and simple.

Just one thing to remember – some bar sets come with a pair of cocktail or highball glasses. Bringing delicate glassware on a camping trip is not a good idea, so you’re better off leaving those items behind.

3. Pack Responsibly

Camping backpack

Aside from its delicacy, glassware takes up a ton of space. Full glass bottles of liquor are also heavy. While you pack your camping gear, limit the amount of glass as much as possible to minimize the weight and size.

Here are a few ways to get around bringing glass cups and bottles:

  • Buy plastic bottles, boxes, bags, or cartons of liquor/wine.
  • Fill empty plastic bottles with your spirits of choice.
  • Fill an empty water pouch with your favorite drink for easy sipping.
  • Bring flasks, tumblers, stainless-steel bottles, and other sealable containers.

You need a reliable way to store solid ingredients. Put them in Ziploc bags or Tupperware and keep them refrigerated in a small, capable cooler.

Having an excellent food storage container is also handy. Otherwise, animals will get curious when everyone goes to bed. You can’t leave any food or drink unattended for long in the outdoors.

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4. Chill Your Booze Naturally

Unless a gas station or supermarket with ice is nearby, you won’t be able to chill your drinks forever. You could serve room-temperature cocktails to get around this roadblock, but we like the other solution better.

If a creek or lake is near your campsite, place the bottles or bags of liquor in the water to chill your booze naturally. The colder your environment, the better. But even in the dog days of summer, fresh water temperatures top out at 75 °F and can keep your drinks below room temperature.

Just make sure you book a campsite with fresh water nearby. Some 64% of surveyed campers say they plan to take a trip in 2022, so the best sites might have long waiting lists.

5. End the Night With Dessert

Campfire cocktail with smores

What better way to end your camping cocktail hour than with some classic s’mores? Here’s a cocktail recipe called “Campfire” that turns the popular fireside dessert into an adult beverage:

Ingredients:

Directions:

  1. Heat water and sugar in a saucepan until sugar is dissolved.
  2. Add marshmallows and stir them frequently until they're melted.
  3. Strain the marshmallow simple syrup into a bowl, removing the leftover marshmallow solids. Set aside to cool.
  4. Pour the rye and single-malt whisky into your cup or bottle. Stir in 2 ounces of marshmallow simple syrup and add more as needed.
  5. Add ice (if possible), garnish with a toasted marshmallow, and enjoy!

We also suggest you eat some real s’mores along with the Campfire cocktail. Eating before bed will lessen the chance and severity of a hangover.

6. Start the Morning Off Right

Camper brewing coffee outdoors

When the morning arrives and everyone emerges from their tents, start it off right with some Irish Coffee. This cocktail recipe is simple –  just add a shot of Irish whiskey, a pinch of sugar, and a dollop of whipped cream to your coffee.

You could also use your personal whiskey preference. In any case, it will wake you up and get the party going again in no time.

Upgrade Your Camping Cocktail Hour Today

Camping is a great way to get out in nature and enjoy all it has to offer. But let's be honest, even the most hardcore campers love a good cocktail hour.

It can be tough to come up with new ideas for alcoholic beverages while camping, so don’t just stick with the same old drinks. Try out some of these fun ideas to upgrade your cocktail hour! Who knows, you may even find a new favorite drink to enjoy while spending time outdoors.

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