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4 Secrets to Staying Dry and Warm While Camping

In this section I will give you four sure-fire ways to stay warm and dry during your campout.  For most of you, you will probably be camping during the summer months when it is warm and dry.  But there may be times, in the evening, when you have rain showers.  Well, fear not!  There are ways to stay warm and dry!

Secret #1
First of all, did you use seam sealer on your tent seams?  Did you put a ground cloth under your camping tent?  Remember the HOT TIP I gave you in the section "How to Choose the Right Tent for Your Campout"?  I gave you that information for a good reason.  If your rain fly is installed, your seam sealer holding and your ground cloth properly positioned under the tent you should be good to go – at least from moisture getting into the tent. 

Secret #2
Move all your gear, sleeping bag, mattress, etc. away from the tent walls.  Make sure they don’t touch the tent otherwise moisture will seep through.  How? You say.  The walls and rain fly of your tent are designed to deflect the water droplets to the ground.  If you upset that design by putting your pack, sleeping bag or other gear against the wall of the tent, water will pool and soak through the wall and into your tent!

I learned this the hard way!  I was in a small tent and didn’t realize that my sleeping bag was resting up against the wall of the tent.  During the night it rained and I slept through it.  In the morning I had a wet spot at the foot of my sleeping bag and a puddle on the floor of my tent. :-(

Secret #3
When you enter your family tent after being out in the rain, take off your wet clothes and put them in a corner or at the front of the tent.  This way you will “localize” your wet gear and keep your other camping gear dry.

Secret #4
This one is for keeping warm while sleeping!  The secret here is the layering technique.  You already do this when you dress everyday.  You wear layers of clothing – shirt, sweater, and jacket – to keep you warm and dry during a rainy day.  If the sun comes out you can remove the jacket and sweater and still be comfortable.  You can employ the same technique within your sleeping bag while camping. 

You can leave the zipper open or open up the bottom on your sleeping bag on a warm evening.  If the night is cold you can zip up the sleeping bag to your nose, and pull on the drawstring to trap in your body heat.  For more warmth you can put on long underwear, dry socks, and a hat.  Maybe even a fleece sweater, jacket or sweatshirt.  Again, employing the layering technique to keep you warm and comfortable. 

Summary of Warm and Dry Secrets:

  • Use seam sealer on your tent’s stitched seams
  • Put a ground cloth under your camping tent
  • Make sure your rain fly is installed properly
  • Set-up your tent on higher ground – no gullies, valleys, etc.
  • Bring rain gear – poncho, waterproof windbreaker.  Remember – a large trash bag can make a great poncho if you cut out holes for the head and arms ☺
  • Use layering technique for warmth

If you are prepared and follow these secrets you can enjoy even the most inclement of camping days.  It can be fun to be indoors playing a game or reading a good book while you listen to the pitter, patter of rain on your tent.  Make some hot chocolate, tea or soup and enjoy!


   

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