How to Insulate a Backpacking Camping Tent

What You'll Need
An extra large tarp
Snow stakes
Camping Foam slightly larger than the length of your sleeping bag
Straw, pine needles, dried leaves, or other form of natural insulation

Knowing how to insulate a backpacking camping tent is vital for winter camping. Often, the insulators that come to mind can not be used due to weather conditions. Knowing how to insulate your backpacking tent for all winter weather conditions becomes vital. The following steps are designed for medium to harsh winter conditions which require proper insulation.

Step 1 – Locate the Site for Your Camp

Locating a spot for your overnight camping is vital. A spot with a flat area, trees, and some sort of dried straw, needles, or leaves is ideal. If the only site available is snow covered then choose a flat area of snow covered land.

Step 2 – Prepare the Camp Area

If the camping area is snow covered then begin digging. Dig a square area that is the only 1/2 inch larger on all 4 sides than your tent. Since your tent will slide into this dug out snow you will want to dig down as far as possible. At least a foot is vital but 2 feet is better. You will also need to make sure the area is placed between 2 trees. This placement will be vital in insulating your camp site.

Step 3 – Place Your Tent

Place your backpacking camping tent in the dug out snow. Secure any loose areas with extra snow. This is serving 2 purposes. The snow is insulation from wind and it keeps the camping tent from being blown over during the night.

Step 4 – Insulate the Outer Tent

Take your rope and run it between to trees. Stretch the length of the rope just a bit longer than your camping tent and with the idea of blocking the wind in mind. After the rope has been strung place the tarp centered over the rope so that if falls on either side of the tent. Move to the corners of the tarp and cut a small incision on each corner. String rope through each incision and using the snow stakes secure the tarp down on the corners. You will want to pull the tarp as close to the tent as possible.

Step 5 – Insulate the Interior

To insulate the interior of the backpacking camp tent you will need to utilize the camping foam. Make sure that your sleeping bag is off the tent floor. Collect stones from around the campsite and heat them in your fire. Wrap them in flannel and place them near your sleeping area. Utilize any natural insulation such as leaves on the inside of the tent by packing them around the walls of the tent.

The only extras for insulating your backpacking camping tent are heavier duty snow spikes, a larger tarp, and some extra rope. Insulating the tent is a matter of knowing what to use around you to insulate your backpacking camping tent and how to put it all  together. Once you have that knowledge the rest falls into place.