Tents - ScoutHelp

Unless you are planing to build your own shelters and have a good idea that they will work it is a good idea to take some sort of tent age with you so that you have somewhere.

You must practice the information on this page before you go out and use a tent so that you know what you are doing and it doesn't turn out to be a mess. You may be better trying to put up a tent and strike it inside as a scout activity one rainy night.

You may find yourself pitching and or striking the tents in heavy rain and darkness, make sure everyone knows what has to be done and how to do it so everyone can help.


  • The equipment for the tent should be stored in one bag with the exception of large tents like patrol tents that require more than one.
  • Tent - Make sure the tent is there and that it has no rips or leaks before taking it away with you.
  • Fly Sheet - Not every type of tent requires one it is mainly the large patrol tents. Some small tents may have a detachable fly sheet. They should be checked for rips or leaks also.
  • Full set of poles - One of the bigger problems people have is getting to camp and find there missing a pole. Make sure that you know all the poles are there if nessercary unpack the tent before leavening to check.
  • Pegs - make sure you take enough pegs plus spares.
  • Guy lines - Some tents you may need to attach guy lines to hold it up or in shape.
  • Dolly's. If your tent requires dolly's make sure you have them! Do they fit onto the upright firmly?
  • Tools - You will probably need a mallet or two to help put the pegs into place.
  • Spares - Try and take a couple of spare pegs etc

Choosing a site

Choosing the area for your tent to be pitched is important so that you get a good nights sleep. Key points for picking a site:

  • Make sure the land is flat
  • Clear or any sticks twigs or stones
  • Check for bumps or wholes
  • Check were the door will be and where the pegs will go
  • Check above for anything that could fall

It will be useful to lay a ground sheet out to put the tent on if the ground is wet. Try not to let the tent get wet at all. If the weather is particularly bad you can erect a temporary shelter to pitch the tent under.

Unpacking the tent

Having chosen your site, lay all your equipment out neatly near the chosen area. Take care in unpacking your equipment. Remove the fastenings on your tent bag and poles. One person can be arranging the poles into the correct order, and begin to piece them together (for most tents like ridge/frame tents). Take care in removing the equipment from the bag, this is where all the silly items first get lost. Remove the tent and fly sheet and lay on flat, dry ground. Place the peg bag and other small equipment on top of the tent bag. All this sundry equipment should remain on the bag until in use. Always replace it back there while working rather than just leaving it where you where. Lift (try not to drag) the tent to the site and unfold carefully. Do not rush this, do not pull on the tent as you open it. If a guy line gets tangled and you tug the tent you could rip the tent and then you will be spending the night under the stars! No one should be walking over the tent at all. If you need to reach 'across' the tent then go on your hands and knees. Again this is where the tent picks up dirt, scrapes, tears and stains. Do the same for the fly sheet and any groundsheet's.


Tents are pitched differently. With new tents you will find instructions on how to pitch them, with older tents that can be found in most scout huts you will need to learn from experiance about how to pitch them or look around on the internet for different ways.