100 Tips For Camping In The Rain

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Dave Barry is a famous humor writer. And he has several quotes about camping.

This is my favorite:

It always rains on tents. Rainstorms will travel thousands of miles, against prevailing winds for the opportunity to rain on a tent.

Unfortunately, rain is something we will encounter while camping.

Here are our favorite 100 tips about how to cope with the rain while camping.

Whether you are tent camping, in an RV, or even in a hammock, you will find tips for you here.

  1. “Embrace the suck”, meaning that experiencing rain is one of the parts of camping. And the more you can learn to have fun while it rains, the better you will enjoy the outdoors overall.
  2. Change your camping dates
  3. Get to the campsite early before the rain
  4. Leave campsite early before the storm
  5. Keep a weather radio with you
  6. Make sure you have a hand-crank weather radio for emergency
  7. Identify the nearest substantial shelter in case of severe weather
  8. If no structure such as a camping store or restaurant to get into, find a cave to hide out severe weather
  9. Make sure any natural hiding spot such as a cave doesn’t have any existing wild animals
  10. Make sure that someone on the outside knows where you are going camping
  11. Avoid pitching a tent or hammock under any large branches
  12. Do not camp next to dead trees
  13. When choosing a campsite look for evidence of flooding such as debris piles
  14. You want high ground but do not put yourself on the top of a hill or ridge where you’re the tallest object to avoid lightning strikes
  15. Put your tent on a slope so that rain will flow away from you
  16. Before camping with a new tent pitch it in your background during a rainstorm to check for leaks
  17. Before each season with an older tent spray-on water repellent or waterproofing spray.
  18. Bring seam sealant with you to patch up any leaks in your tent.
  19. Buy a tent whose floors are folded up into the walls of the tent to increase the waterproofing of the tent
  20. If the tent does not have ground cover, lay a tarp down first. Make sure the tarp is shorter than the tent to prevent water from collecting outside the tent.
  21. If the tent does not have a rain fly then use a tarp to create one
  22. You can attach a Mylar blanket to the rain fly or tarp to reflect heat back into the tent
  23. Use painters drop cloth in the tent to further prevent moisture from seeping through the ground and making you wet.
  24. Sleep on a yoga mat to make you warmer, more smooth and yet another water barrier
  25. If you are car camping, bring an air mattress to sleep on in the tent
  26. Keep a plastic bucket at the front of the tent to put your shoes in
  27. Bring a plastic bag to hold your wet clothes
  28. Bring a clothesline and clothespins to hang clothes to dry.
  29. Change out of wet clothes into dry clothes as soon as you can to prevent hypothermia
  30. Open the vents in the tent to regulate temperature and to keep from building up condensation in the tent.
  31. Double-check where you’re parked if dispersed or boondock camping
  32. Bring equipment to help your RV wheels get traction if you get stuck
  33. Make sure you have an RV assistance plan
  34. Bring extra fuses for your RV
  35. Bring replacement hoses for your RV
  36. Set up an awning by your RV entrance or tarp with poles
  37. Setup a rug to wipe the mud off
  38. Just as with a tent bring a bucket to hold dirty shoes
  39. Bring RV window sealant
  40. Plumber putty can be used as a temporary fix for roof leaks
  41. Give each child a section of RV to decorate themselves
  42. Relocate the RV if severe weather is expected
  43. Do not stay in RV if a tornado warning has been issued
  44. Have RV regularly serviced to avoid breakdowns in the middle of a storm
  45. Check your RV wiper blades and replace them if worn out.
  46. Bring insides if you are experiencing strong winds
  47. Play charades
  48. Create shadow puppets
  49. Do group story where 1 person tells one line at a time
  50. Keep firewood wrapped in plastic or tarp
  51. Always keep a ferrous rod around to start a fire because works if wet
  52. Create char cloth which is both a way to pass the time and emergency gear
  53. Study plant identification
  54. Bring extra fruit & fish hooks to practice removing getting stuck
  55. If you have a large enough tarp open air, do a fire-making a competition like Survivor
  56. Bring along bars of soap and carve soap
  57. Practice whittling
  58. Bring a stamp making kit
  59. Create art out of junk
  60. Create crafts out of leaves. Check out Pinterest before you go.
  61. Try making your arrows out of finding wood and stones. Or bring own arrowheads & feathers
  62. Do not eat or snack in your tent even in the rain
  63. Do not cook in a tent
  64. Keep meals simple
  65. Make soup in a steel canteen
  66. BBQ tuna in a can
  67. Bring no-cook food such as canned meat, canned fish or jerky
  68. Sardines are tasty & nutritious without any preparation
  69. Beer jerky is high protein & great snack
  70. Snack on pistachios or peanuts in the shell. Keeps you a busy and great snack
  71. Create a bow drill and practice making fire with it
  72. In the rain, use your most reliable way to create a campfire
  73. Build a windshield out of rocks or tarp to keep a fire lit. Even with a camp stove. Make sure to keep ventilated. And disperse stones when done.
  74. Make sure you only use firewood your brought or have permission to use.
  75. Make sure someone who is back home knows where you are generally going and when to expect you back
  76. Make friends at the campsite. You can help each other if someone gets stuck or otherwise in trouble.
  77. Review your first-aid kit before any trip to make sure its adequately stocked, and no medicine has expired
  78. See if the campground has a flood gauge.
  79. Camping by the river or lake is beautiful but can turn dangerous if heavy rain comes and causes flooding.
  80. Never be afraid to move to higher ground
  81. Remember, “Turn Around Don’t Drown.”
  82. Don’t drive through flooded roadways there are too many unknowns including hidden debris and even downed power lines
  83. As little as 6 inches of rushing water will cause most cars to lose traction and also only 2 feet of flowing water will turn your pickup truck into a boat
  84. If camping in an RV, store any toys or gear outside that could blow away or hit your RV
  85. If stuck in an RV during severe weather, try to stay away from the windows as much as possible.
  86. Fishing is often better in the rain, as long as not severe weather
  87. Look for runoff because fish are likely hanging around there
  88. Be on the lookout for places where baitfish can catch a breather from the current, big fish are often nearby
  89. Fishing spots that work well in dry weather, often don’t do as well in the rain as the fish move for various reasons
  90. Keep a journal
  91. Practice meditation
  92. Take a nap
  93. Bring a bivy to improve the warmth of your sleeping bag
  94. Keep a tarp over a hammock, to keep you and your underquilt dry
  95. If hammock camping bring an underquilt to help keep your warm because you will get cold once the temperature starts dropping below 70 because you’re exposed to more air. Worse in the rain.
  96. Use drip lines on your hammock straps and ridgeline to keep water from getting on you in your hammock
  97. Hammocks with a proper rain cover or tarp can be even more comfortable than a tent, but make sure to avoid large branches or connecting to dead trees
  98. Always bring a poncho on a hike
  99. Bring rain boots and a rain suit and hat so that you can still get outside in the rain
  100. Have fun

And you can read more articles about camping in the rain:

What Kind Of Camper Are You?

Outdoor Survival
Car Camping