If you’re prepping for a fantastic vacation in the Wisconsin Dells area, a strategy for packing your suitcase probably hasn’t been a top priority. You’ve likely been too busy researching water parks, theater shows, zipline courses, hiking trails – well, in short, all the fabulous indoor and outdoor attractions that make this scenic heart of the Badger State one of the Midwest’s foremost travel destinations.
That said, you certainly can’t pull off a hassle-free trip to the Dells without savvy packing. There’s something of an art to stowing your belongings for travel, and here we’ll run down a few basic approaches.
Start visualizing the configuration of your suitcase as you make a list of what you want on your Wisconsin Dells getaway. Along with your personal comfort and inclinations, the weather forecast and your planned itinerary will dictate much of this inventory.
For example, Wisconsin Dells in winter is a snowy paradise – perfect for snowshoeing, skiing, and snowboarding. You’ll certainly want a coat, hat, and gloves, but remember that layering is an excellent way to pack clothes for all kinds of weather.
If you’ll attend some evening performances or sample some Dells-area upscale restaurants, you may want a nice set of clothes, too. If you’re mostly hitting up the amusement parks and brewpubs, elegant eveningwear might not be necessary.
A good general strategy for preparing this list of belongings is to break down your trip by individual day and scheme out its potential activities.
If your trip involves air travel, you’ll need to pack with current flight regulations in mind – keeping your properly sized gels and liquids in a plastic bag that’s easy to reach for the security gates, for example, in a carry-on bag.
You’ll generally want bigger and bulkier items on the bottom of your suitcase, and fragile objects stowed in the center and swaddled in a protective layer or two of clothing.
You can fold your clothes and stack them in flat layers – which distributes weight relatively evenly in the suitcase – or you can roll them up tightly to conserve space. If you’re packing for a long trip or otherwise bringing a fair amount of garments, rolling may be the best bet – and shouldn’t make your shirts and pants any more wrinkled than folding, if you’re careful.
Obviously you don’t want to forget socks and undergarments – not that you can’t replace such items in the Dells if you do – but it’s often a good idea to hold off stowing them until you’ve packed most of the rest of your gear. That way you can stuff them in crevices and gaps to more efficiently utilize all the available space.
Wrap shoes in a plastic bag so they don’t dirty your other belongings. Another sneaky suitcase home for socks, incidentally, is inside shoes.
Trial and Error
Don’t save packing for the morning of your departure. Give yourself time to try out a few arrangements; such trial-and-error can help you hit upon a quick, easy, go-to strategy for future trips. You’ll also be all the more aware of where things are in your luggage so you’re not endlessly rummaging around for a t-shirt here or a book there.
Efficient packing allows you to focus on the goods: the beauty, adventure, and fun of Wisconsin Dells!