Camping in different terrains and setting up camp is one hurdle. But what about the weather? Camping in the rain can be challenging, because it can wash away your fire and ruin your supplies. We recommend everyone have a tarp packed, because it will save you in the event of a heavy rainstorm. We carry one from MSR, which will help you ‘weather’ the rough tides. You can hang it in tree branches so that it offers you extra protection from the rain.
Your tarp will also protect you while you are cooking and doing basic tasks. You can also put one under the tent, so that it protects it from getting wet or getting any sort of water damage. This will also help prevent tears in your tent from the rough weather.
Drying any wet gear may be challenging if the rough weather persists – but not impossible. Set up a string and hang any clothes or gear on it so that it has an opportunity to dry and air out. Another option is drying clothes inside your tent (for the record, we only think this should be done if the rain doesn’t stop). This is not ideal, but it will do the trick.
Fire in the Rain
Being able to start a fire in the rain will also serve you well. Make sure you know your surroundings, first of all. Assess what kind of materials you have to work with, and go from there. You can burn wood, but you will have to scrape off the outer layer to get to the dry bit. And before you even get there, always make sure that you have waterproof matches. Matches that are not waterproof will hardly do you any good.
We also recommend dressing in layers, so that even if it doesn’t rain, you have an opportunity to be dressed appropriately. While it doesn’t often get cold in Australia, when it does, it can feel brutal. Always be prepared for colder and wet weather so that you’re not shivering at the wrong time.
We touched on this in our earlier blog, but try to avoid camping in valleys, as this is where the most water will collect. Flash floods are also a strong possibility, which are extremely dangerous. If you must camp in a valley, try to perch yourself on higher ground so as to avoid that situation.
At Australian Preparedness, prepping means being prepared for even obscure situations. It may or may not happen, but if it does, not having the right knowledge can sometimes mean life or death. Camping in the rain doesn’t have to be hard, so long as you know how to do it.