Managing Condensation While Camping

Managing Condensation While Camping

Derek Tillotson
3 minute read

"Is my rainfly leaking?!" No, it's probably your own breath dripping down on you 😳

Condensation is something that happens in every tent… If you’re breathing in a small space for a long time, that 1 liter of water that you exhale during a typical night has to go somewhere. Especially on a cool night, where the temperature difference makes things even steamier.

We've had people ask us about condensation so I wanted to share some insights on how the Haven tent body and rainfly can work together to mitigate condensation build-up. In fact we're really good at it.

Here are some tips that will make sure you have a great night and wake up nice and dry. Our goal is to, Make sleep the highlight of camping™. Staying dry is important!

Managing condensation is all about airflow. If you lock both sides of the fly down you’ll be protected from wind and rain, but you also make it a lot harder for air and vapors to escape the internal confines of the tent.

Blue camping hammock tent with rainfly locked down

On summer nights I can usually get away with locking down both sides of the fly. Or using the side loops to hold the fly in place. The vents at the head and foot ends of the hammock seem to work well enough to keep minimize condensation in warm temperatures. In my experience, cooler weather camping is when condensation becomes become more of an issue.

Here’s the simple fix. Guy it out!

The further you guy out the rainfly the more air you will get moving through the tent. For winter camping it’s a bit of a give and take… if you guy out too far you will be colder than you need to be, and if you don’t guy out far enough, you may get condensation.

Haven Tents Camo

In the past, I have balanced this by only guying out one side, the leeward (downwind) side of the rainfly. The video below shows how this is done. In cooler temperatures, you want the condensation that inevitably collects at the top of the rainfly to run down along the inside of the fly and away from you. In the video, you can see that I actually had an icicle grow on the rainfly hook, as the low point of the fly.

Remember to use the fabric corner loops, instead of the grommets, when guying out your rainfly. The grommets are not very good at handling horizontal tension.

The Haven Tent is a tool. Like anything, there will be a bit of a learning curve. I hope you can learn from my experience and share your own if you have any insights. We love hearing your feedback and suggestions. Together we’re making the Haven Tent better as a community.

—Derek Tillotson, Haven Tents™ Founder

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