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8 Motorcycle Camping Gear Essentials for Under $300

Enjoy the outdoors with these lightweight, compact camping gear deals.

Published on 05.03.2018

3. Therm-A-Rest Trail Scout Sleeping Pad ($39.99)

Therm-A-Rest Trail Scout Self-Inflating Sleeping Pad - top pick for motorcycle camping

Dimensions (Regular): 72 in. x 20 in. x 1 in. (183 cm. x 51 cm. x 2.5 cm.)
Packed Size: 5.6 in. x 11 in. (14 cm. x 28 cm.)
Weight:1.44 lbs. (653 g.)
R-Value Insulation Rating: 3.4

A good sleeping pad is important for getting a comfortable night’s rest. Sleeping pads give you a soft surface to sleep on and keep you insulated from the cold ground. Inflatable backpacking pads with a contoured shape provide the best balance of weight and comfort.


The Therm-A-Rest Trail Scout Self-Inflating Sleeping Pad contours to the shape of your body, keeping the size and weight down to a minimum. The pad offers enough padding for typical camping surfaces and has a good insulation rating. To save even more weight and bulk, choose the “Small” Trail Scout pad. The “Small” pad should be long enough to cover the head to knees area for all but the tallest campers, and your feet will have sufficient padding from the sleeping bag.

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Author: ADV Pulse Staff

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32 thoughts on “8 Motorcycle Camping Gear Essentials for Under $300

  1. Good stuff!! I have the GSI cookset and I don’t think you can get anything better for the price. It is super lightweight and everything nests nicely inside the pot. Even a pocket stove can be stored in there.

  2. This is a great article. I wish I had it as a resource before my first pass at purchasing Moto Camping Gear. Mistakes I made buying the wrong stuff meant having to double spend to get the right items.

  3. After many long range bike trips one of my essentials is the Alite Butterfly chair. Size & weight VS comfort, it is as much of a return on investment as the thermarest. Having somewhere to sit back & relax after a day of riding is something I won’t do without again.

  4. Pingback: Motorcycle camping setup for $300

    • Hey Don – As stated in the article, prices shown are the ones found when the article was published. Prices may fluctuate up and down without notice, depending on demand, season etc.

  5. Pingback: Field Tested: Sea to Summit X-Set 11 Collapsible Cook Kit - ADV Pulse

  6. This is a very good basic list, especially given the $300 cap, however there’s literally a myriad of options when it comes to brands and features. While 10 pounds is certainly lightweight, on a motorcycle, the final weight is far less critical than the compact size, comfort and usability of the gear. For example, camp gear ratings are always optimistic. A 2-man tent is really a 1-man plus gear. A 1-man tent can be nearly unusable. A 20 degree bag is really a 40 degree bag. A loaded Swiss knife is arguably a better camp knife than a frame-style knife. A ThermaRest pad is less comfortable and compact than a Big Agnes Air Core. For a little extra money, you can spring for the good stuff… Other essentials I bring with me are a lighter, some Ronson lighter fluid, 12VDC plug for the bike and any accessories, like an inflator. Don’t forget a compact lantern, a mil-spec CREE flashlight and even an REI Flex Lite or Monarch chair. I do bring a camp coffee pot and use the interior space to nest my stove, utensils, coffee, lantern and other small items so it takes almost no more space. And of course, a good camp coffee cup with an inflatable pillow nested inside is important.

  7. Great article. A few of the items on this list went with me on Leg 1 of my first BDR and will be coming along for the next 5 legs.

  8. Wow! A gear guide that makes sense! There’s no reason at all to break the bank on any of this stuff and the article highlights that. Here are a couple of things to spend your next $50 on: a see through drybag for your kitchen – makes finding coffee gear easier first thing in the morning. A Crazy Creek chair may be a little pricey but, like a comfortable sleeping pad, it’ll pay you back everytime you relax.

  9. Personally I find the one person tent too confining. A two person tent to me is actually what I would call a one person model. You need a place to put your gear, if you are in a rain storm you don’t want to be cooped up in such a confined space, and the weight savings on any decent sized bike is negligible.

  10. It seems like a great list..and the comments are very helpful but, as I plan my first trip I wonder….how much space does all this stuff take up? How am I going to fit it on my bike? Am I going buy more luggage?

    • Hi Dennis. For a short to medium length trip, you should be able to pack all of this equipment plus your clothes into a luggage setup that has about 60 liters of carrying capacity. A pair of soft or hard panniers and a decent sized top bag should do the trick. If you are a really efficient packer, you’ll have room to spare.

  11. Good recommendations. I have several similar items all focused on being super light weight and small for ADV riding/packing on my Tiger 800xc. I usually wait until things are on sale, so my prices are cheaper than daily listings on Amazon. The main items are the GkGk Camping Stove + Camping Pot, Klymit Static V Lightweight Sleeping Pad, ALPS Mountaineering Lynx 1-Person Tent, Suisse Sport Adventurer Sleeping Bag, and a few other odds and ends similar to what you listed to pull my kit together. I stuff EVERYTHING camping related into one drypack, so it’s easy to unload and keep separate for other gear and tools.

  12. Pingback: Motorcycle Camping Gear – Open Air Travel

  13. As mentioned there are a lot of variables so I’ll only touch on one. Cost. Consider a tent. You might save money at the point of purchase on a less expensive tent, but the first rain/wind storm could have you begging to give that money to someone for better shelter. If you camp instead of hotel, even for a few nights, you get all that money back AND you have the better tent for life. “Nothing is more expensive than cheap tools”.

  14. Pingback: under 300 double | Roma Tomato

  15. After 54 years of motorcycle camping all over the USA, Canada and Australia, I have found a few truths about camping and they are.
    1. any tent you cant stand up in is a waist of money
    2. and air mattress is far better to sleep on and the thermal factor is far higher. don’t throw your money away on a pad.
    3. Your knife selection is also very bad, a good all purpose knife will split into three parts. one for knife one for fork and one for spoon. it opens cans or bottles and slice or carve anything you want, and you don’t have to carry extra eating utensils.
    4 one good cast iron pan can cook any meal you want including making soup and its a lot cheaper and will last a life time.

    enough there are far to many people on the road in their huge campers or loud hot rods who do not know camp ground courtesy, and make it miserable for those of us who use to love the peace and quiet of the camp grounds in the evening. Now one has to travel farther and farther in to the back roads to find that and the farther you go the worse the roads are.

    I would be nice if some company would start a CAMP GROUND COURTESY COURSE.

  16. Pingback: 8 Motorcycle Camping Gear Essentials for Under $300 – Prepping Newsletter

  17. Pingback: Planning a motorcycle camping trip - Motorbike Writer


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