How to Stay Cool While Tent Camping
When you’re sleeping in your tent in the heat, avoid bulky layers and confining clothing like the plague.
In addition to dressing light, some tent features and additional items will help you stay much cooler.
Choose a Tent That Breathes
If you have yet to select a tent, finding one with good airflow is key. In hot, humid and wet conditions, you want your rain fly on the tent — but at the same time you want good ventilation. An ideal tent has an abundance of screen-like mesh on the top portion and two doors, according to “Outside” magazine.
You can place the doors strategically to allow breezes to go from one side through to the other. When you’re setting up your tent, take a few minutes to get a feel for the air flow at the campground and find a spot that gets a breeze.
A spot at the top or bottom of a canyon, or an area with slightly less underbrush or tree cover can be good places to set up your tent, with doors facing the breeze to allow for a natural flow of air.
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A Lightweight Way to Cover Up
Your tent might protect you from most flying insects, but some people still cover up. Curl up in a sleeping bag sheet or liner.
As the name suggests, pieces of fabric are cut into the shape of a sleeping bag, allowing you to line the bag to keep it clean or use it as a tropical sleeping cover in the heat. If you’re squeamish about creepy crawlies, it’s an added layer of protection.
A Solar-Powered Fan
If you have the luxury of bringing along a few extraneous items, a small portable fan might be worth lugging along for those sticky nights.
Outdoor stores carry solar panels — some of which are light enough for backpacking — that you can charge up during the day. At night, you’ll have power for running a small fan.
A Hammock in the Trees
In really hot, muggy weather, being in the confines of a nylon tent may feel confining. While there may not be much of a breeze, sleeping in a hammock allows you to catch any breeze that comes by.
This also may be a way to take a break from camping on the hard ground. If you’re worried about bugs, some hammock brands come with the option of adding a mosquito net “tent” over the top.
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