ALASKA - With many campgrounds opening Friday, May 18, REI was the place to be on Thursday to stock up on camping essentials.
Many people are excited to explore the outdoors with the warmer weather.
"I think it's good, it's nice we finally have the weather to enjoy it. This is Alaska, you got to take what you can get,” said Gary Berger, who was shopping at REI.
REI employees remind campers that the nights are still a little chilly, so come prepared.
“It's getting down into the low 40s right now, so a good sleeping bag is definitely worth it,” said William Klatt, an REI Sales Specialist.
Campers aren’t the only ones getting ready for a weekend away. Park rangers spent the day training volunteers in courses on moose and bear safety.
“You never know when a situation is going to occur, and it's good to know how to handle people and the situation,” said volunteer Mary Meier.
They also got a hands-on lesson with bear spray. Park rangers say it’s important for people to know how to use it in case of an emergency.
“It helps them understand the idea of where they need to spray, the importance of acquiring a target and actually getting the spray where it needs to go,” said State Park Ranger Kurt Hensel.
Park rangers say the best thing you can do is research the area before you go and make sure you have adequate gear. And don’t forget the bear spray.