Hiking through tough trails and climbing up to the mountains needs a huge amount of walking. The reason that makes this type of journey more difficult is the weight on your back. And it becomes very important for every hiker to understand the skill of backpacking and most important know-how to set up heavy items. This brings us to today’s topic which will be useful through your journey and every hiker should know this – how to strap tent to backpack?
How to strap tent to backpack?
This method is used when the backpack has an external frame for attaching the gear. Be aware not all backpacks have an external frame. If you have one, then use this method to strap tent to backpack. If your backpack doesn’t have an external frame then use the second method.
If you don’t know the difference between the external and internal frames in a backpack then you can go through the explanation below. You can skip this part if you already know the difference.
External frame backpacks are recognizable by visible frame elements outside of the bag. On the other hand, internal frame backpacks are form-fitting.
- Internal frames are given inside the bag and keep the gear close to the body. Where on other hand external frames are given outside of the bag to attach the gear. In the external frame backpack, gear maintains the distance from the body which leads to rolling and moving of gear here and there through your journey.
- Internal frames are frame sheets with aluminum. The formating profile of the internal frame gives protection against rocks and branches. With external frames, you need to be more careful as no protection formatting is there and your tent may get snagged after coming in contact with branches.
- An internal frame backpack allows you to carry extra gear if compared with an external frame backpack, but the downside of an internal frame backpack is that it usually produces more warmth. Which becomes uncomfortable in hot weather.
How to strap tent to External frame backpack?
The first thing you should do is check the tent if it is dry or not. Never strap the wet tent to backpack because if you pack or tie the wet tent it will, first
- Increase the weight, and second, if the tent is wet and unmistakably water comes in the inner part of the tent it will lead to a miserable situation.
Open the tent and spread it on the ground. Before rolling set the poles of the tent alongside the tent in a pole bag and not in the center (helps the tent to remain in strong shape while packing). Now, Start folding the tent from one side to the other.
After that put the tent inside the tent bag or any other water resistance bag you have to protect it from rain and moisture.
Now, look if the tent has any loops (loops are usually given at the backboard for attaching the gear). And also check the tent straps(tent straps are usually given at carry sack). If the tent contains straps then it becomes so easy for you. Just tie the straps with loops. To do so, bring the tent straps over loops and tie it strongly so there is no flexibility or looseness left. Do double-check the strength of straps before tieing so that it will not break through your journey.
In case you have a canvas tent, check this – Do Canvas Tents Need Waterproofing?
For a better experience tie tent at the bottom of the backpack so, the weight is transferred through your hips and not loaded on your shoulders. This way you protect yourself from any injury because when you tie the tent up, it will move here and there more which will disturb your balance while climbing any mountain. Also, it will protect you from back pain by putting less pressure on the spine.
Tip: if you have any other friend with you who is not carrying the tent, make sure he is behind you so that no possibility of losing the tent remains.
What to do if the backpack doesn’t have an external frame?
How to strap tent to Internal frame backpack
Not all the tents are built the same. And there is a huge possibility that your tent does not have straps or you don’t have a backpack with external frames. Then this raises the question of how to strap a tent to a backpack if it has no strap?
In this case, use the second option. Let’s understand step by step.
use the external frame backpack. This option is easy with less worry but space may be the problem here.
Spread the tent the same way on the ground and fold it. Make sure the rolls are tight as it will help to save a lot of space.
Put the tent inside the backpack but make sure to put it somewhere below or in middle.
- Pack your tent after sleeping bag because this way not only you reduce the pressure on your back(the pressure is reduced because now the weight is divided and transfer through your his and shoulders) but it also makes it easy for you to use most used items as you put them on the top.
Tip: choose the internal backpack which is long enough to transfer the weight through the lower body. Not only it provides you relief from pressure but also offers extra space for gear.
Choose the first option(External frame) for flat trails. The second option is best for Rugged trails
Pros and cons of strapping a tent to a backpack
- The first positive of strapping the tent to backpack is space. Space inside the bag will increase and that’s why lots of hikers and hunters prefer this option. It makes it easy to carry other extra material with you on a hike.
- Attaching the ent outside will allow the air to flow through your back.
But this option also has downsides
- The first downside of strapping the tent to the backup outside is snagging. You have to be a little bit more alert from the pointy things, especially rocks and branches.
- The second downside of this option is weight imbalance. Although some tents are ultralight, when the trail is up down, you may get out of balance. And it also puts a lot of pressure on your back if it is attached loosely to the backpack.
- The other downside of this option is, the tent may fall and become a thoughtful situation for you if the weather is not predictable or you are going for multiday hiking.
- It becomes hard to walk fast when you attach the tent outside.