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January 2016 Issue
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Pitch your tent in a gale

Ensuring your tent doesn't fly off is a good start! Photo: Wilderness

This can lead to infuriating – sometimes hilarious – situations. What normally takes a couple of minutes can turn into an ordeal half-an-hour or longer. Nylon can end up a kilometre away and stuck halfway up a tree, while clipping the fly down can be as tricky as trying to catch a swarm of bees.

The following tips provide the best chance of maintaining your sanity when preparing your home for a blustery night in the hills.

  • Have heavy gear close by to weigh down the tent
  • Have tent pegs in your pocket, ready for use
  • Get the tent poles fully set up and keep them close-by
  • Pull out the tent and position the narrowest part facing the wind
  • Stand upwind holding the corners of the narrow end, using the wind to blow the tent away from you (don’t let go!)
  • Using heavy objects as weights to aid you, peg the near side of the tent
  • Place heavy objects inside the tent, at the upwind end
  • Insert the poles from the side you’ve just pegged down and peg the rest of the tent
  • Take the fly, stand upwind and, holding the two nearest corners, let the wind help fling it over the tent, and attach
  • Use guy ropes to tighten the fly. If the fly’s tight it’ll reduce flapping and will strengthen the tent