We've all been there: It's getting dark, it's cold, a wind's coming up, and you've got to sleep outside tonight. Pretty much the worst time ever to forget the tent instructions. Before you hike into the woods, you better know how to set that tent up by heart to avoid awkward and time-consuming efforts at your camp site. Learning to find the right spot on which to pitch your tent, how to put it together, and how to care for your tent, will make camping a much more enjoyable experience.
Dome style tents are the most commonly used tent for camping and other outdoor sports. Dome tents are compact and easier to assemble than pup tents, come in various sizes, and can sleep two to eight people depending on size. They can easily fit into a hiking backpack.
Choose a flat open space to set up your camping tent. Once you have chosen a place, clean off the ground so it is free of twigs and rocks that could puncture your tent or make sleeping uncomfortable.
Take the tent out of its packaging and unfold it on your tent site so the top is exposed. Locate the door and position it so it is facing your camp site. Pull all four corners of the tent to where you want them to be located.
Put all the support rods together. They are separated into thirds or fourths but all sections are connected by a string making them easy to put together. Average size dome tents will have two long rods.
Insert the rod into the rod slips on each corner of the tent. Slide the rod all the way through to the other end. There is a break in the slip at the top of the tent, so you will need to guide the rod to its second slip.
Insert the end of the rod into the corner socket to secure the rod, then go to the other end of the tent and insert the opposite end of the same rod into the socket. The sockets can be found on a flap on each corner of the tent. Complete this process for the ends of each rod. When you are finished, the tent will be raised off the ground.
Hammer stakes into each corner of the tent. The stake location is next to the socket where you inserted the rods. Putting stakes in the tent will prevent it from blowing in the wind. Once the stakes are in place, the tent will have its final shape.