While tents are made to withstand the weather and water, there are cases when they do get wet. Ideally, you should not pack a tent that is wet or moist, as it can develop mold on its surface.
This will lead to structural damage and an improper environment for you to rest. So, whether the tent got wet during heavy rainfall or other incidents, you should dry it as soon as possible. When camping or exploring the outdoors, both the tent and your clothes should get dry when conditions allow it.
However, waiting for a tent to get dry is not always something we’re keen about. When you set goals for the day, spending time to get a tent dry is something that will slow you down.
This is even worse when time is limited, like getting to a location at a certain time so you can catch a bus, for example. But, during longer trips, maintenance operations like washing and drying are very important.
They will keep you comfortable and protect your health, so you can enjoy your adventure risk-free.
So, the following tips may be of great use for drying your tent fast and effective each time:
If there’s no rain, there will be morning dew
Every adventurer wishes to make the most of every day. So, as soon as the sun is up, you want to hit the trails and get more of what nature has to offer.
But, you realize your tent is wet as you plan of packing it so you can move on. Morning dew is quite frequent up in the mountains, even during summer months.
Also, internal condensation can contribute to this as well. Inside the tent, the temperature is warmer, due to your breathing. Outside, on the other hand, the air is colder, leading to condensation on the tent’s walls. And we all know just how unpleasant it is to pack a wet tent.
If possible, you should position your tent in a location where it can enjoy sunlight as early as possible in the morning. This together with a slight breeze could help with drying your tent in no time.
In case you have both of these conditions in the morning, it is certainly worth waiting a bit longer before you depart. Prepare yourself a nice cup of coffee and enjoy the gentle rays of the sun in the morning, while your tent dries up.
How long should you wait? Usually not longer than half an hour, if you have a light tent.
What if you don’t want to wait or you can’t?
Those that are on a strict schedule or those that would like to find a better spot while there’s still light would want to get moving as soon as possible.
What happens in this case? What to do if the tent is wet? If you really want to continue your expedition right away, you will have to pack your tent as it is. But, you should take a break and allow it to dry later on during the day.
Enjoying a break during midday in an area where you can spread your tent will definitely solve this matter.
You should not keep a wet tent in the backpack for extended periods. Also, when packing your tent, make sure it will not come into contact with the clothes you’re having in there as well.
After all, you will want to dry up the tent only, not all the clothes you have. So, you either isolate the tent or separate your clothes somehow. Placing them in a plastic bag will prevent moisture from affecting dry pieces of equipment.
A dry bag is something you should always carry around when camping
When camping, the weather is an unpredictable factor. Even if you keep your eye on weather forecasts, things can change fast, especially in mountainous regions.
So, there is always a chance to get wet. As a general rule, you should always pack additional clothes with you on the mountain, regardless of the season. If rain catches you and gets your clothes wet, you will need something dry to stay warm and avoid hypothermia. Believe it or not, there were cases of hypothermia that occurred in the summer while in the mountains.
What to do with wet clothes and belongings? You can’t leave wet items behind, so you will have to take them along. A dry bag will keep them away from wetting the rest of your belongings in the backpack, so always have one with you.
When choosing a dry bag, make sure you’re getting a watertight one. This will prevent the water from leaking out of the bag. When dealing with water, you can never be too careful.
If you have a backpack with a sufficiently large front pocket, one that can be left open, you could put a wet tent in there for a while. This is a good temporary solution that will prevent the tent from getting the rest of your backpack wet.
Flat rock surfaces are ideal for drying up a tent
A summit or flat rock surface with exposure to the sun are among the best places to rapidly dry a wet tent. When heated by the sun, the rock will emit heat itself, drying the tent from the inside as well.
So, you can take a brief break in such a location and spread the tent on the rock. It will be dry before you even know it. If you have wind as well, this will also accelerate the drying process.
Just make sure you secure the tent well, so it won’t get blown away by the wind. As the tent dries, it becomes lighter and there are higher chances to drift away due to the wind.
Meanwhile, you can rest a little and enjoy the landscape, maybe even grab a bite. Once the tent is dried, you can pack it and be on your way. This is probably one of the fastest ways to get your belongings dry without wasting too much time with it.