Know How To Set Up A Tent In A Snow

For most campers, the best time to camp is during summer. At this time, the weather is warm and you can enjoy yourself to the fullest. Your outdoor activities will not be affected by the cold and you can hike further and engage in all the activities that you like.

Setting up your tent in the nice weather is easier than on the frozen ground. As such, fixing the tent’s stakes will not be challenging. Things, however, get difficult when you are camping during winter.

Other than having to deal with a cold setting characterized by strong winds, you will have to carry a lot of heavy clothing to keep yourself warm. This, however, is not the only thing that you will have to deal with so I will guide you on how to set up a tent in the snow.

Winter camping

camping in the winter

If you camp throughout the year, then you can attest that winter is the hardest time to camp. The temperatures are cold and the strong winds make it difficult to perform simple tasks. As a result, you will have to bring a lot of heavy clothing to stay warm and this adds to the weight that you will have to carry around.

Your movements will be labored as a result of having to move around with a lot of weight on you. This way, you will not be able to explore the outdoors as much as you want.

All these challenges, however, will mean nothing to you if you are an avid camper. You probably have a 4-season tent and great gear for your outdoor adventures. If you don’t have a proper all-year tent, check these 4-season tents. The only problem remains how to set it in the snow to ensure that you are protected from the elements. 

Don’t worry as this article will address this specific challenge. Let’s now take a look at the things that you will have to do to make this process a success.

Pitching a tent in the snow

Follow these 4 steps and you will be camping in no time.

1. Site selection

You will have to choose a great location if you want your tent to remain fixed to the ground when you are out there camping. The area that you choose as a pitching spot should not be in an avalanche zone. It should also be level to ensure that there are no sections of the tent that are raised more than others.

2. Probe the area for voids

Avoid areas that have voids when choosing a pitching spot and that is why you need to probe the area with an ice axe or a hiking pole. When you set up your tent on an area that has a void underneath, you may crush into the ground at night and this can be quite dangerous.

3. Create a solid ground

You will also have to create a level ground for setting up your tent. If you have your snowshoes on, stomp the ground to make it level. You should not only stomp on the area where you will set your tent but also the area around it to make it easy to move around.

If you have a latrine nearby, you should also stomp the area around it to make sure that the area is level as well. Another option would be to use an avalanche shovel to dig a shallow platform where you will set it.

Strong winds can make this process challenging but you can pile the snow that you dig up on the side to break the wind. Once you prepare the shallow platform, let it rest for about 10 minutes for the area to harden up.

4. Pitch your tent

tent in the snow

If you have a free-standing tent, you can easily set it up on your platform with minimal effort. Such a tent, however, could get blown away so you need stakes to secure it.

How do you stake it in the snow?

Normal stakes will not anchor into the ground so you need special stakes that are suited for the snow. To anchor your tent, loop the guy lines to your tent around the stakes. Create a small hole in the snow and put the stakes inside the holes vertically.

Cover up the holes with snow and stomp the area with your boots to firm it up. That area will harden and this will hold the stakes properly. Trim the guy lines to your tent to taunt it.

To remove the stakes later on when you are done camping, use an ice axe to chop the hole and to loosen the stakes up.

Take a look at the Geertop 4-season tent that will help you stay warm and dry during your winter camping trip.

Preparation is the key

Camping during winter can be very difficult as the weather is quite challenging. You could deal with strong winds and this will make it difficult to do even the simple things. Setting up a tent in the snow is a skill that you will have to learn to have pleasant and safe camping in harsh conditions.

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