Pitching a tent
Practice erecting the tent at home first and colour code the poles and sleeves so you can easily identify them. If you get confused just follow the seams. Buy stronger tent pegs as the ones manufacturers supply are often inadequate. Close the doors when erecting to ensure correct tensioning and push the poles, rather than pull them, through the sleeves to prevent separation.
- If it is windy put something heavy inside the tent when erecting or dismantling to stop it blowing away.
- If your tent sags after rain do not re-tension the guy lines because it may shrink and rip apart as it dries out.
- When taking your tent down disassemble the poles from the centre to stretch the elastic cord evenly and prolong it’s life.
- For camping in winter, go to lightweight expeditions in climbing.
Choosing a camp site
When choosing a campsite, make sure the ground is well drained and sheltered and not easily damaged. Use previously used hardened areas if possible. If you have to move stones and clear vegetation find somewhere else or replace them when you have finished. Camp 50m from water sources. Use a protective groundsheet on stony ground. Avoid low spots as they can be cold, and pitch the entrance away from the prevailing wind. It may seem idyllic to be close to water, but water attracts mosquitoes and midges, and rivers can flood. Do not dig drainage channels around your tent Hang your food 100m from your tent; leave nothing aromatic (including food, toothpaste, lotions) inside; and don't leave sweaty items hanging overnight - salt-loving rodents may shred them.