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Building Your Own Tent, Is it The Best Option?



A man with a blue hat walking in the forest.

All over the United States of America, camping is now in vogue. Once just the preoccupation of boy scouts and family holidays, camping is now rising as a hobby exponentially in young Americans. According to the North American Camping Report 2019, since 2014 there has been a 72 percent increase of campers every year. Now, both millennials and GenXers are more likely to identify themselves as life long campers.

One of the reasons for this is the growing market for luxury camping, glamping or van life, probably romanticized by outdoor adventurers on Instagram. But for young people, looking for a glamourized but slightly anesthetized experience of the great outdoors, it begs the question: building your own tent, is it the best option? 

Although the rise in interest in camping seems to be related to the more commercialized, glam-camping, we think there’s a parallel factor which has led to the rise of the popularity of camping. With the world becoming awake to the risks of plastics and climate change, more and more of us are looking to get back to nature and do it in a sustainable way.


A person cutting a tree branch with a knife.

A tarp tent can easily be set up with the assistance of a tent pole, or a nearby stick.


In fact, the study found that half of all campers identified their “love of outdoors” for sparking their interest in camping. So if you love the outdoors, and want to surround yourself in nature in a way that benefits it in the long run, then primitive camping, and especially building your own tent, might be the ideal option for you. 

When we buy camping tents, and many other outdoor pieces of kit, often they come in lumpy, plastic packaging. This not only can be bad for the environment but also tents and extra camping gear can weigh you down exponentially on your hike or camping experience. If you’re looking for an ultra-light, and environmentally sustainable option, then building your own tent is a perfect option for your camping trip. They’re also a fantastic option if you don’t want to sleep at a campsite. 

Another reason why building your own tent might be the best option for you is that you’re a romantic! If your love for the outdoors goes beyond an occasional weekend trip into the local hills, and you’re a full-on adventure seeker who wants to fully immerse yourself in nature, there’s not much closer to it you can get than by building your own tent.

As we will go on to outline, there are a few different options for building your own tent. But many of them include utilizing parts of your natural habitat. For example, you might find a stick to prop up your tarp, or two well-spaced, string trees to tie your camping hammock to. 

Although building your own tent is not for the faint-hearted, it can add exponentially to your outdoor adventure. Imagine carving out your own intimate canopy, to observe the world out of when it’s colder. Or in the summer months, why even have a shelter at all? If you know it’s going to be excellent weather on your camping trip, a tent is almost a waste. There’s nothing more invigorating than the feeling of falling asleep under a canopy of twinkling stars or waking up to a stunning sunset, with a light breeze on your face. 

As we’ve outlined, there are already a couple of general reasons why people might want to think about making their own tent. One is to be more environmentally sustainable, not only in the production process but also by using natural materials to ensure that the site is left exactly how you found it, with no man-made additions. Secondly, many people are attracted to building their own tents by a romantic notion to “get back to nature”, and fully be immersed in their natural environment.

Many serious outdoor enthusiasts also choose to build their own tent, as this is an ultralight option for long hiking trips. To help you ask the following question, we will break down a few different ways it’s popular to build your own tent: building your own tent, is it the best option for you? 


Tarp DIY tent

One of the most popular tents that people build for themselves is a simple tent made from tarp. For summer camping, these can be an excellent option. They might not protect you from a winter storm, but form a light summer shower, they work just fine. You can set up a tarp with stakes in the back two corners, and then prop up the front middle of the tarp with a camping pole, tent poles, or a nearby branch.

If it’s a bit colder than you expected, we recommend setting up the tarp tent in a direction that faces away from the direction of the wind. This is because although tarps are an effective way of keeping you dry, they don’t offer much wind protection. Alternatively, you could try and find a location where you’re naturally protected from the wind, like behind a big boulder, or in a thick forest. This is one of the main principles of building any shelter: you need to stay dry and out of the wind. 

The main benefit of building your own tarp tent is that it’s super light. A tarp or two in your backpack will add barely any extra weight at all but will protect you and your kit from light rain. Tarps also come in useful for lots of other purposes on camping trips, for more information, check out this useful article. What you make up for in convenience though, you lose out on comfort.

Unless you want to carry around a sleeping mat, your sleep on the floor under your DIY tarp tent might not be the most luxurious sleep of your life. If it’s windy, you better have brought a thick sleeping bag! However, if you’re camping in the summer months, or you’re willing to risk a bit of discomfort in your sleep to get some extra miles in your hike, this could be the ideal option for you. 

However, there are a couple of disadvantages to building your own tape tent. Firstly, as we have mentioned, it doesn’t offer much protection from the wind if any. The second main principle of finding a shelter is that it protects you from wild animals and bugs. Because of the open entrance of the tarp tent, this is not something which it can help you with.

If you plan on building your own tarp tent, make sure there aren’t any midges at that time of year, and that there are no bears or other dangerous animals in the area. But, if you’re looking to get closer to nature, then waking up to deer grazing in front of your tent, for example, might be exactly what you’re looking for. It’s your call!


A bunch of colorful leaves.

A good shelter can be made out of simple materials which you can find on the forest floor.


DIY leaf hut

Our second option is ideal for those looking for the ultimate back-to-nature experience. Building your own leaf hut will turn you from a casual camper to a full-on survivalist. This will not only surround you and cushion you with the stunning natural materials occupying the forest or wood, but you will also be learning some invaluable survival skills. 

The idea behind building a leaf hut is to make a simple wooden frame, probably in the shape of a triangle unless you’re using a natural dip or hole, with interloping branches to make a frame. Obviously it’s only really possible to build a leaf hut in a forest or wood. Once you’ve built your simple frame, you cover it in a thick layer of leaves. This will keep you dry and warm, insulated from winds.

Another great idea is to add a bough or leaf bed to the ground, to stop you from losing body heat that way, that you would usually lose through the tent floor. This is also a great option if you don’t want to carry around the extra weight of a sleeping mat if you’re backpacking, especially if you’re going on a hiking holiday. 

The leaf huts are one of the most classic and recognizable shelters, and it’s also very easy to erect. However, take your time with it! Leaf huts can be very effective at protecting you from rain and wind, but they need to be built just right. We would recommend building a leaf hut with someone who has prior experience for the first couple of times, just to make sure you have the technique right. If there’d too much space between the elements of the frame or the leaves are not packed right, you might not get a waterproof shelter. 

Leaf huts, thus, can be waterproof. However, you’ll never get as much protection from the elements as a sturdy tent. Because great tents are sealed, waterproofed and windproof, they’re quite hard to rival when it comes to protection from the elements.

However, you don’t always need that level of protection. And as anyone who has attended a festival in the summer will tell you, the experience of waking up in the tent in the summer, when the sun has been on it for hours, is not pleasant. Therefore, when it’s hotter, and there’s less chance of rain, a natural shelter like the leaf hut is a luxurious, indulgent option. 


DIY trench shelter

As we’ve mentioned, the best time to build your own tent or shelter is in the summer. However, that only applies if you’re looking for a pleasant, relaxing time! If you’ve got a lot more adventure coursing through your veins, and you want to build a tent or natural shelter even in really terrible weather, then either are still options available for you. For example, you could make yourself a DIY trench shelter in a snowfield! It goes without saying that this is not for the faint of heart. But if you’re in it for the adventure, read on. 

If you’re looking to build a shelter in the middle of a snowfield, a trench shelter is probably your best option. But how do you make one? To build a trench shelter, you need to make two walls built of snow or dig out the snow to make a trench or hole in the middle. The top of the hole can be closed with natural materials, like branches or leaves, or with a rainfly.

We would recommend using both for extra protection from the rain plus insulation and protection from the wind. If you’re looking for the extra protection of walls from the cold, that you would be missing by not having a wall tent, then this option could be worth your effort. 

Obviously, if this is the route you’re going down, you’ll be bringing a really heavy-duty sleeping bag, and preferably a thick sleeping mat to avoid losing body heat into the ground. Remember to take a hardy groundsheet with you. Another trick to keep in that vital body heat is to make the hole of the trench shelter actually quite small. There’s shouldn’t be too much extra room inside the shelter, as the concept is designed to trap in as much of your body heat as possible. 


People in sleeping bags on a rock in the mountains.

Bivy bags go right around your mat and sleeping bag, making a super lightweight alternative to a tent.


Bivy bags

If you’re going camping in the winter months, you might want something which offers some more substantial protection than natural, or open coverings. If you’re looking to be sleeping under the stars, but still have the ultimate protection from rain, then a bivy bag is the way to go! Bivy bags fold up super small, and are really light, and are the winners at waterproofing. You’ll barely even notice it on your back as you’re hiking, meaning you can go for longer stretches and feel less tired at the end of the day. 

However, as with all DIY tent substitutes, you’re usually swapping your sleeping comfort somewhat for longer, easter hikes. With a bevy bag, you are literally in a waterproof bag, which can fit around your sleeping bag and your roll mat. So: actually a bivy can offer you just as much comfort as a tent, if the weather isn’t challenging.

With a really windy and rainy night, sleeping in a bivy is going to be challenging on your face. However, if it’s hot out, and it’s unlikely you’ll get too much rain, then a bivy bag can give you all the protection you need combined with the freedom of really sleeping outdoors. And Bivy bags are the far better option for winter, as they keep in a lot of your own body heat. 


Why even take a tent? 

One option is to not even use a tent! If you’re going camping in the summer months, then many of the options we have suggested will be much more palatable for you. They will protect you from a little bit of rain, but still, leave you sleeping under the stars.

However, if you’re certain that the weather is going to be nice, why even take a tent at all? Most really hardcore hikers and outdoor enthusiasts don’t mind sacrificing on comfort. The most important thing is the feeling of being utterly connected to nature. 

Before taking this option, it’s imperative that you do a lot of research. Firstly you need to check that your hiking and camping location allows primitive or ​backcountry camping. Secondly – always check the weather forecast! If there’s even a slight chance of rain, we would recommend taking at least a tarp with you, to keep you dry in emergencies.

Remember as well, with any of these options, it’s very easy to lose a lot of your body heat through the ground. It’s best to take a sleeping mat with you. If you’re going for ultra-lightweight backpacking, then an inflatable sleeping mat is ideal. 


A person wearing a blue backpack outdoors.

For backpackers who prioritize lightweight portability over comfort, there are many DIY alternatives.


Final Verdict:

So is building your own tent the best option? There are a few ways to build your own tent if you have the know-how. Some people choose to make simple one-person tents themselves. However, we wouldn’t recommend making your own fabric tent from scratch. Finding the right tent for you online can be super cheap and easy. In fact, if you want a more DIY approach towards camping, then we would recommend opting for a camping hammock

It’s so easy to find a cheap tent online that will fit whatever needs you have. Good tents have strong, waterproof fabric, and sealed seams to avoid any water getting in as you’re sleeping. It will be almost impossible for you to make a tent as good as a shop-bought one, so why bother. Instead, your best tent could be… not even a tent. The best covering for you might be something just a little more adventurous, that connects you to nature, and even adds to your survival skills too. 


Bonus tip: If you’re interested in building a DIY tent for a group, take a look at this useful video! 



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Outdoor Blog

Living Life on the Edge: Embracing Adrenaline-Fueled Moments



Life is an adventure, a journey filled with countless opportunities for thrill and excitement. For some, the idea of living life on the edge, embracing adrenaline-fueled moments, is an exhilarating concept that fuels their passion for adventure. This article delves into the world of adrenaline-chasing, highlighting the benefits and experiences of such a lifestyle.

Kitesurfing: Riding the waves of excitement

The first step to living on the edge is stepping out of your comfort zone and trying something new. Kitesurfing, a water sport combining wakeboarding, windsurfing, and paragliding elements, is an excellent example of an adrenaline-fueled activity. The activity entails utilizing a sizable maneuverable kite to capture the force of the wind, enabling the rider to traverse the water on a board specifically designed for kiteboarding. There is nothing quite like the exhilaration of soaring through the air, feeling the breeze caress your cheeks, and mastering the art of maneuvering a kite. Kitesurfing is a remarkable adventure that captures the spirit of embracing excitement and pushing boundaries.

The psychological thrill

In addition to the excitement of the tangible experience, embracing a daring lifestyle offers a mental rush that is just as stimulating. Engaging in these activities provides an exhilarating experience that stimulates the production of endorphins, the body’s innate pain relievers. This results in a profound sense of joy and an overwhelming feeling of invulnerability. The thrill of this frenzy can become habit-forming, compelling thrill-seekers to pursue fresh and increasingly demanding adventures consistently. 

The benefits of embracing the edge

Embracing a daring lifestyle goes beyond pursuing excitement; it presents many advantages. Participating in thrilling adventures can enhance physical well-being, as numerous pursuits demand robustness, stamina, and skill. Furthermore, they have the potential to enhance one’s emotional well-being by offering a means to alleviate tension and unease. Engaging in these activities demands concentration, which can effectively alleviate mental clutter, resulting in a serene state once the surge of excitement diminishes.

The balance of risk and reward

While living life on the edge can be exhilarating, it’s important to remember the balance of risk and reward. Adrenaline-fueled activities often involve a certain level of risk, and it’s essential to approach them with a healthy respect for safety. Proper training, equipment, and precautions can help mitigate these risks, allowing you to enjoy the thrill without unnecessary danger. 

Always research your activities and location. This understanding can help you decide if the risk is acceptable and if you have the skills and equipment. Check and maintain your gear, and never sacrifice safety. Finally, embracing adventure with a responsible and safety-conscious mentality lets you enjoy high-risk activities without risking injury.

Living life on the edge embracing adrenaline-fueled moments, is a lifestyle choice that offers a unique blend of thrill, excitement, and personal growth. Whether kitesurfing across the waves, scaling a mountain, or skydiving from a plane, these activities provide an escape from the mundane, a chance to challenge oneself, and an opportunity to experience life at its most vibrant. So, step out of your comfort zone, embrace the adrenaline, and start living on the edge. After all, life is not meant to be lived in the slow lane; rather, it’s about experiencing every thrilling moment it offers.

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Outdoor Blog

Renewable Energy Farms That Make Beautiful Hiking Trails



Wind farms and solar panels are not just alternative means to get our natural resources. They have now combined with another industry and are making some unexpected news. 

The tourism industry has marked renewable energy farms as hiking trails, and hikers are here for it. You can read more about renewable energy sites. Although you might not think of hiking on a wind farm as beautiful as hiking along a famous mountain trail, you might just be in for a surprise. 

Let’s discuss the benefits that renewable energy farms have as hiking trails. 

Why are Renewable Energy Farms Important? 

Renewable energy farms are important for the future of civilization. These farms provide an alternative to our natural resources, such as wind and energy. 

The most important benefit of renewable energy is that it doesn’t produce any greenhouse emissions and reduces the air pollution other traditional processes create when providing natural resources. 

These farms also allow for the creation of the country’s own resources without having to import natural resources from another country and save their limited natural resources. 

Here are some of the reasons why energy farms are important: 

  • Allows for sustainable rural development 

This will allow landowners to make an extra income by generating energy. 

  • Test new technologies 

Providing the opportunity to test technologies to find new ways to create renewable energy. 

  • Improving the effect of climate change 

Climate change has left the environment filled with toxic pollutants, which has led people to become sick and breathe in harmful air. 

Renewable energy can change this by lessening the number of pollutants that are released into the atmosphere and providing much safer, cleaner, breathable air. 

  • This leads to job creation 

Job creation within the renewable energy farms industry is plentiful as there is a need for skilled workers such as construction, maintenance and manufacturing to build the necessary infrastructure that is needed to generate these wind and solar farms. 

The Benefits of Renewable Energy Farms As Hiking Trails 

Renewable energy farms have many benefits for both the environment and people who love spending their time outdoors. 

Embracing the Use of Green Technology 

Since wind farms and solar plants are located in areas that are unpopulated, they make for great hiking trails. 

By visiting these sites, people get to experience green technology, and by integrating them into recreational spaces, people can visit these sites and embrace green technology by seeing how they work and the positive effects that it has on the environment. 

The more people embrace the shift to green technology, the easier it will be to use it. 

Energy Farms Offer A Unique Experience For Visitors 

Visiting energy farms means you will have a unique experience while there. You will get to see how these large devices work and how they replace the basic resources needed to survive. 

Tours can give visitors more information on the background of the construction of devices, their environmental impact and why it is important for us to switch to sustainable energy resources. 

Visitors Get to Enjoy Natural Beauty 

The sites for these renewable energy farms are often located in areas that are surrounded by natural beauty, such as large landscapes. 

Natural pathways can be used as hiking trails without the need for carving out new roads and damaging the ecosystem. 

Visitors can even discover native plant life and explore the natural wonders that are located at these energy farms, as they are often placed where no infrastructure has been built on the property before. 

Providing Health and Wellness Benefits 

Hiking has many health benefits, such as reducing stress, improving fitness, and helping aid mental well-being. 

Energy Farms have Community Benefits and Increase the Economy 

These hiking trails can help boost economic sales, bringing tourists to the community. This will give the local people the opportunity to expand their businesses. 

This can also help increase employment within the community as these sites will be visited frequently and lead to new business openings to cater to tourists. 


Renewable energy farms greatly benefit both the economy and the people who want to spend their time on them. These farms are especially important for transitioning from natural resources to newer energy resource power plants. 

From learning how to embrace green technology to getting health and wellness benefits to enjoying nature’s natural beauty and finding job opportunities within the market. 

Spending time on these renewable energy farms can be educational and recreational for anyone who visits them. To find more renewable energy farm hiking trails, you can visit


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Outdoor Blog

Top Recommendations for RV Window Maintenance



Much like other sections of your RV, the windows sometimes need a bit of maintenance. It is essential to clean off dirt and insect smudges and also make sure they are adequately sealed to avoid leaks and water harm.

If you have a broken RV window, then you may want to consult Van Isle Glass. However, if you wish to know more about simple measures to ensure your RV windows stay spotless and secure, you are in the right spot! Continue reading below.

Polish Your Windshield Using Ultra-Fine #0000 Steel Wool

Numerous RV enthusiasts have praised the use of the finest grade of steel wool #0000 for removing stubborn bugs and water marks from their windshields. Before proceeding, first test the #0000 steel wool on a small portion of your windshield. Apply it with light, circular motions. Sweep away any remaining steel wool bits with a microfiber towel. Next, spritz the surface with a residue-free glass cleaner and wipe it down with a separate cloth.

Steel wool is also great when used with a spray lubricant for cleaning tires, maintaining grills, starting campfires, and repelling mice. A gentler alternative is cleansing dish pads. These pads are versatile, suitable for cleaning various materials such as wood, porcelain, stainless steel, chrome, painted areas, and glass.

Apply a Sealant to Avoid Leaks

Silicone sealant is effective in stopping leaks in areas like your windshield, RV windows, sunroof, and vents. It penetrates tiny gaps, creating a robust waterproof barrier. Ensure the surfaces are clean before application and do not have old caulk, dirt, oil, and other residues.

Furthermore, clear away any standing water on windows to prevent hard water stains. Make sure the inside of your windows stay dry to avoid condensation and mold build-up. If there is significant condensation on your windows, consider getting a small dehumidifier.

Use Tools to Access Difficult Regions

Using cleaners with long handles can prevent you from straining to clean those distant parts of your windshield. Windshield cleaning tools often feature a lengthy, swiveling triangular head that is ideal for getting into corners and spots difficult to access manually.

Opt for a Residue-Free Glass Cleaner

A high-quality glass cleaner will maintain the clarity of your windows and windshield. A great glass cleaner performs well on both standard and tinted windows, making sure to remove streaks or leftover residue. Another option is a natural concoction of half vinegar and half water, with a touch of lemon essential oil.

Steer Clear of Cleaning RV Windows in Bright Sunlight

A sunny afternoon may feel perfect for washing your RV windows, but the warmth can speed up the drying of the cleaner, resulting in streaks or spots. It is advisable to tackle your RV window cleaning during early morning, late evening, or when stationed in a shaded area for the best outcome.


Keeping your RV windows clean and clear is not only about aesthetics, but is also vital for safety. The subtleties in cleaning, like steering clear of the sun and using the appropriate products, play a key role. Adhering to these guidelines will help you maintain a pristine view during your various journeys.

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