Festival season is here, and while you’d typically expect the air to be awash with the sounds of summer, sadly, just as often it’s awash with rain instead - Glastonbury 2016 was surely one of the muddiest ever.
Nevertheless, the near-treacherous conditions underfoot seemed to do little to dampen the spirits of people at this year’s event - maybe because preparing for all eventualities is an essential part of anyone’s festival preparation. So here are a few pointers about how to give yourself the very best chance of having a perfect festival experience.
The big checklist
It’s really important that you plan ahead by making a list of things to take with you. The easiest way to do this is by coming up with the different categories of items you’ll need – clothing, toiletries, cooking and so on - and making separate sub-lists for each.
Once you’ve sat down and written out the list in full, it’s probably going to appear quite daunting. For example, you probably are all going to need all those extra changes of clothing to cope with the weather – which predictably as ever could be baking one day but distinctly chilly the next.
But the one principle that every seasoned festival-goer will tell you is that it’s better to have found room for everything than to discover that, when you really need that torch or tin opener, that they’re still at home possibly hundreds of miles away.
That’s why your list of gear to take with you should also include check boxes next to each item. It may begin to sound like a military operation, but you’ll be glad that you did take so much care in your preparations.
Naturally, packing all of your essentials is going to mean that you’ll need plenty of room in the car. The worst possible scenario would be starting to load everything up on your day of departure - only to find it won’t all fit. So make sure you build in enough time to have a dry run and, if needs be, to invest in a roof box to store all that extra stuff or think about hiring a vehicle if you need to.
It’s also important to think about the practicalities once you get to the festival. Chances are that you’ll have to park some way away from the main site and carry everything from car to camp. So having several lighter bags is a better idea than just a couple of really heavy ones. A little foldaway trolley could also be a real help.
Comfort in the car
The final tip, for when the festival’s over, is to have a comfort kit waiting for you in the car to ease you through the journey home. It’s amazing how welcome you’ll find having a set of comfortable, clean and dry clothes; some tasty snacks and some chill-out music on hand after a few days of festival life.
So here’s looking forward to a fun-filled few days for you wherever you’re heading – and fingers crossed that it really will have been worth packing all that factor 35 sunscreen.