Pitching a tent in the rain is a necessary skill for anyone that wants to take a trip outdoors. The process is usually fairly easy, but the elements can conspire to make setting up the tent a bit more difficult. Setting up a tent in the rain is a more difficult process than doing so in clear weather, but it is a survival skill that might become necessary. Learning how to do this not only requires that you bring along the right supplies, but that you are able to conduct the process in a manner that will leave the interior of the tent dry when you are done.

What You Need

If you are going to put up your tent in the rain, you will need a few basic items. These items should be in the pack of every camper, and should help you to figure out how to pitch a tent with relatively little effort. If you cannot find these items before you head out, stop by the store. They can come in handy for far more than rain, and they will eventually pay for themselves. You will need:

  • tent
  • stakes
  • mallet
  • groundsheet
  • tarp
  • clips or nails

Set Up

Your first step is going to be to get your tarp set up. While you might be tempted to get working, you need to leave the tent in its protected bag as quickly as possible. String up the tarp in a tree or prop it up as best you can, forming an overhang. This will allow you a dry space to work. Your next step will be to put together the tent frame. If you can put together the tent frame without exposing the fabric of the tent, you will be in good shape. If not, make sure to keep everything under the tarp. Next, put down your groundsheet. This will keep water from leaking into the tent during and after set up. Finally, attach the tent and frame as quickly as possible. The groundsheet and tarp should have kept the elements out, keeping the inside of your tent dry.

Staying Dry

Once you have finished with pitching the tent, you need to follow a few basic rules. You should make sure that you leave adequate insulation in the tent, as your breath can actually cause moisture to accumulate. Make sure that all seams on your tent are sealed, as failure to do this will leave you drenched in the night. Finally, make sure you pay attention to where you set the tent up in the first place – if you put it on the bottom of a slope or near water, you may find yourself soaked in the morning.

Pitching a tent in the rain does not have to be difficult. You simply have to provide yourself with proper cover and use basic common sense to accomplish the task. You may want to practice this process when the sun is shining, as the best way to learn how to pitch a tent is always practice.