Hot answers tagged

49

I suggest using both the car and the tent together. A car will lose heat fastest through the windows, so use the tent to cover them (and the top). The windows are a thin single layer of glass, while the panels trap a layer of air between the metal outer and a lining that is a better insulator than glass. The panels also block radiative heat loss from the ...


45

If you want to reduce your visual impact on the other people in the area, choose a tent with colors that match the landscape you're going to camp in. Green in forest or other vegetated areas, brown for the desert, white for winter camping. However, if you are in trouble and want to be found, it helps to have a very bright tent that stands out. A tent you ...


33

I think you pretty much covered it. Advantages of a tent: Keeps more rain/snow out (particularly if you have little skill in tent/tarp setup) Keeps out insects. For me, this is the big one - in spring time when the mosquitoes are fierce, being confined to your sleeping bag with a net over your face is not nearly as pleasant as lounging in your enclosed ...


33

One reason (and I don't know enough to suggest this is the main reason) is for identification. When putting a tent up you may have a bundle of fabric that you need to set down on an uneven surface, sort and erect. Having it in black distinguishes it from the varied colours of the tent walls so you can always place your tent floor down, without having to ...


31

The best way is to reduce (actually to remove) any kind of attractions they like: food and water. If they cannot find anything useful, than they will stop releasing scents that attracted other ants. This means, you have to make sure there is no (open) water or drinks nearby, no sugar in any way, and no food in general. Keep everything enclosed, in such a ...


28

The general rule I use is if your tent needs to be heated to be comfortable, then you're "doing it wrong" and should have gotten a better tent. There isn't really any weather (especially backpacking, where weight matters more than it does when unpacking from a car) where the correct tent and sleeping equipment can't be made pretty cozy. However, "I told ...


26

For tents that erect outer first, pitching in the rain is no different to any other time, just don't leave the dry inner out in the rain while putting the outer up. The outer will get wet on both sides anyway. To make this easier a bit of forward planning is useful, like pack the inner and outer separately so that you can just leave the inner in the car ...


25

I grew up car-camping in a frame tent (slept 4 in about 1/4 of the floor area). Those things are heavy. Seriously heavy. Lifting the fabric onto the central pole with that half-extended was hard work for someone strong. The poles had to be pretty robust too, as the pitching process involved one or two poles taking most of the weight at various times. ...


24

There are all kinds of people who put up the fly first, then crouch under it putting up the inside. It's generally a very unpleasant experience from all I have heard, what with the crouching, crawling, and being rained on at least while getting the fly up. I handle it completely differently, because I have a free standing tent. On arrival at a site the very ...


24

It's because the sunlight will damage the tents fabric over time. UV damage occurs when long term exposure to the sun damages the fabric and thread of your tent or rain fly. The fabric will become thin and brittle. If you tent or rain fly seems to rip for no reason or with very light pressure, this could be the reason. The outside of the fabric will often ...


23

If you are stealth camping, it helps to have a tent that blends in. If you are camping where there is hunting, it helps to have a tent with bright, high contrast so that you can be sure you are seen. Also (thanks to Ben Crowell for the comment) you may want tents that blend in for high traffic areas to disturb the scenery less. High contrast tents can be ...


22

Why I use a tent in three easy-to-understand bullets Mosquitoes Ticks Mosquitoes Yes, I could carry netting, but at that point the tarp + netting would be both more hassle and more weight than my tent. (Which is where Ryley is 100% wrong about a tent not protecting me from nature. I've never had mosquitoes in my tent)


22

A tent's UV resistance isn't for you, it's for the tent. High-energy UV rays will break down many synthetic and natural textiles over time. UV resistant fabrics are not as susceptible to this breakdown, and will last longer with repeated exposure to sunlight. UV resistant fabrics are great if you're looking for long-lasting gear that will be used in ...


21

Basically you should never find yourself in such a situation under normal circumstances. Tents are supposed to keep you warm, and not the other way round. If you are doing that more often then I'd say you have the wrong gear being used at the wrong place. Yet, there may rise a situation when you need to do it, there are ways to do it, but honestly you'll ...


21

The car, mostly because you can use the heater. You will want to make sure that the exhaust is clear to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning and only run it for a short periods at a time. This also helps keep the engine warm, as it is much harder to start an engine when it is really cold out. If the the engine quit working, like say you hit the oil pan and froze ...


20

Footprints: Zero? Sure. One? Good. Two? Nice. Three? Great. Four? Bomb-proof! My point is this: if you have a waterproof floor on your tent, you don't need any footprint. The trouble is, you are subjecting your tent floor to the abuses of rocks, sticks, sea-shells, brambles, or whatnot - meaning it will quickly get micro-tears and perforations. Enter the ...


20

I suppose the two main factors are how comfortable the location is and how likely the location is to have problems should the weather play an influence. For comfort, the best location will be flat, free from bumps, and objects such as sharp rocks or sticks which can damage the groundsheet. Even with a decent sleeping pad or mattress, it isn't very nice when ...


19

When I decided to trash my tent, which was so old and was no longer of any use for active camping, I and my mentor in trekking, firstly used the same tent to teach kids of how to pitch a tent. I also used some part of the tent fabric to make a sort-of a sand bag for me, which I used to tie to my legs during my running sessions. I have also used a piece of ...


19

I wouldn't buy an ultralight tent if you're going to put the tent through severe trauma or require significant space (e.g. to use chairs inside). I do think the main difference in buying is cultural; unless you are poking it with sticks tents shouldn't experience that much damage. The modern ultralights should be good for most any weather outside of ...


19

One way I was taught in the uk armed forces (a very long time ago) was to use dry rocks. Heat the rock in your camp fire, then carefully just before bed time, place the rock inside your shelter, the rock releases it's heat slowly and acts very much like a radiator producing a consistent source of dry heat. A word of warning though this method was never ...


19

I would say there really aren't any. Even a hypothermia patient would get wrapped in a hypo wrap and the stove would be used to boil water to go into Nalgene bottles. The problems with running a heater inside of a tent include, Catching the tent on fire. Carbon monoxide poisoning. There are heaters that are meant for use inside tents, but you are asking ...


18

That's essentially how 4 season tents work, the tent is full nylon (no mesh) and the fly is full and basically acts as a second tent, creating that air gap. some 4 season tents even have little foamies on them that help keep the gap, preventing snow from squishing the fly against the tent and eliminating that insulating volume: Putting a tent inside another ...


18

Depends on where you set it, where I'm from the wind is almost always the determining factor, when you're in thick trees and wind isn't a factor, then you set your tent wherever it fits. Which direction you're facing depends on the terrain and your exposure. When we went camping a couple weeks ago, we set one of our tents up specifically to take advantage ...


17

To test your hiking kit/boots to see if it is all comfortable/fits you can do a day walk but carrying your full rucksack and kit (or stuff of similar weight). This will give you a idea of how your kit fits and the difference in hiking with a full rucksack compared to a daysack to help you judge how far you should aim for. Most of your camping kit can be ...


17

Putting it up in the garden sounds like a great idea, as it will let you check if: all parts are still there, everything is in working condition, you still know how to actually put it up. One more important thing worth checking is if the tent still is waterproof. In case there is no rain in the forecast for the next few days, you can try to simulate it ...


16

Generally, the more times the poles cross each other, the better the wind resistance. Additionally, tents with crossed-pole designs usually have better head room. Of course, more poles means more weight and more time required to pitch and strike the tent. How you pitch the tent is also important. Keep the doors away from the wind, put the bottom of the tent ...


16

I have a Marmot tent and those were my color choices. I chose the brighter one as I thought it would be useful if I were lost and needed visibility, either lost from my own campsite or in need of rescue, and because orange seemed more cheerful. I discovered that the light gray and orange fabrics let through more morning light than olive drab tents I have ...


16

I wear my swimming trunks to the shower. My wife wears a pull over sun dress (light weight, thigh length). We wear our shower shoes, we carry our towels and shower supplies. We usually just take soap and shampoo. The soap is in a small plastic container. We wear the same clothing both ways. Dressing and other hygiene activities are done when we get back ...


16

If you only need the extra width for your elbows, try a sleeping pad with wings. This is a common practice in hammock camping, because the elbows tend to get chilly when pressed up against the hammock fabric. There are lots of hammock pads with built-in wings, but if you buy one of these be sure it's also good for sleeping on the ground. They often come with ...


15

"Fast pack" refers to setting up a tent with just the fly, tent poles, and usually a groundsheet. You leave the inner body behind. For example, here are the fast pack instructions for the Big Agnes Fly Creek UL1 tent, which is designed for this setup. Fast packing saves a significant amount of weight, but makes you more vulnerable to insects and cold. A ...


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