How Do You Keep Your Tent Dry In The Rain?


One of the best things to experience when camping is to stay dry because who wants to get wet? But, unfortunately, there will be a time that you will end up in a torrential downpour while you are on your backpacking trip. That can dampen the camping experience, so to speak. That is why you will need to know about all of the tips possible when it comes to staying dry, and that means you will want to do what you can to prevent your tent from getting wet. Additionally, your tent must remain dry from the rain. Luckily, some methods will help you achieve that and avoid water getting into your tent. So, let’s go over ways right now on how to keep your tent dry from the rain. Firstly, let’s talk about why your tent must stay dry.

Why Is It Important To Have A Dry Tent?

You want to stay dry when camping because it is essential, not only for comfort but for safety. If you are camping in wet conditions, not only will it not feel pleasant, but you are risking mold and mildew growth in the tent. Mold contains toxins that can be harmful if you inhale them too much. Additionally, if your tent is too moist, you increase the chances of mosquitoes becoming attracted to it. You will end up with many bites, and there is always that risk of the West Nile virus that you could end up contracting. Those reasons alone are why you will want to aim for having a dry tent. So let’s talk about how you can increase your chances of having a dry tent.

There Are Points To Know When Setting Up The Tent

When it comes to setting up your tent, you can do things to ensure that it has the highest chances of staying dry. The first thing to do is pitch your tent in a dry area. That means to find firm and level ground that is still soft enough for you to insert your stakes. The trick is to find an elevated campsite, so the odds are that it is naturally dryer. That means not pitching your tent anywhere near a river, ocean, or a lake since the water levels can change rapidly. That even applies to dried-out riverbeds. Also, it is not a good idea to camp near trees because when it rains, the trees can drop the water on your tent. That is the first step to take when camping in a dry area.

Even if you have a waterproof tent, it will not overly protect your tent from rain and moisture. That is why, before setting it up, lay down a large tarp as it will prevent water from seeping through from the ground. The tarp will help, but you will also want to make sure you have a tent that has a waterproof rain barrier or a rainfly. If you don’t have a tent that features that, you can always take extra tarps and hang them from poles to cover your tent, so water does not get into it.

Now that you have that settled, whether you have a rainfly or you set one up, you will want to ensure that you keep the windows open in the daytime and use the tent vent overnight. That way, the moisture that accumulates through breathing will leave the tent through ventilation. Too much condensation of moisture will increase the chances of mold and mildew growth which is not what you want.

However, even if it does not rain or you are correctly ventilating your tent, there are other causes of moisture getting into your vent. So let’s talk about what else you can do to help keep your tent dry.

Your Clothing And Sleeping Bag Matters When It Comes To Having A Dry Tent

If you take every precaution to keep your tent dry through using a rainfly and through ventilation, but you climb into the tent with damp clothing, then you are defeating the purpose. Your wet clothing will end up creating moisture in the tent, and that will once again become a ground for mold and mildew spores to grow. The best thing you can do to avoid this is to layer your clothing. What you want to do is, before entering the tent, take off the wet layers of your clothes and put them into a bag that properly seals them, so you don’t allow the moisture to come in contact with your wet clothes if you bring the bag into the tent.

If you are out while it is a torrential downpour, you will be wearing rain jackets, and those jackets will soak up. You will need to remove the rain jackets before entering the tent, and you may want to keep them outside as well until it dries up. Taking off your shoes before entering the tent is also the best thing to do. You have to remember that the ground has moisture, and your shoes will track the water from the ground into the tent. That is why you want to make it a habit of removing your shoes before entering the tent, no matter how dry the day is for you.

When you take off the shoes or clothing, you will want to do it to not get wet as you transition. You can use a tarp to help you stay dry as you change.

Now you know about the issue with clothing, let’s talk about the sleeping bag. When your sleeping bag gets wet, it will become useless and a source of mold and mildew. Therefore, do not get a down sleeping bag as you will be much better off using one consisting of synthetic and waterproof materials. If you do all of these things, you will have a much better chance of staying dry and keeping your tent dry.


Keeping your tent dry in the rain is essential so you stay comfortable when camping‘ and do not increase your chances of mold and mildew growth in the tent. You want to have a dry environment, too, so that you don’t end up with mosquitoes that can carry diseases like the West Nile virus. That would ruin your camping trip. However, if you set up your tent in a dry area, put a tarp underneath it, and use a rainfly, you will likely stay dry. Ventilation and wearing dry clothing will also be critical to having a dry tent. You also want to get a sleeping bag made from waterproof and synthetic materials.