Funny you should post this. I am actually doing my first camping trip in about 25 years on my TW this coming weekend. I will be riding 150 miles due West, camping for 3 days/2 nights, than the 150 miles back home. I already purchased most of what I think I need for this trip, and will just need to learn to do without since I can't afford anything else. I pretty much got all my camping stuff at WalMart, and some at Menards. I'm not bringing a sleeping bag since they are all just too large. Instead, I purchased a $10 cotton blanket at WalMart. I got a twin air mattress with battery pump (smaller), those folding camp stoves that fold down to 6" by 6" by 1/2", a mess kit, and other bare necessities. My tent is a 4-person tent that packs up quite small and was only about $35, if I remember correctly. After my trip next weekend, I will probably be posting a ride report with pictures, so that might give yo an idea if what this first timer is doing.
Oh, and this time, I'm riding alone and meeting a buddy there (he's in a car). I don't have any friends that ride, but then, I have very few friends