Pitching a tent on the beach is one of the best ways to experience sleeping outdoors. The comfort of sand as a mattress, stars as a night light, and the waves as a lullaby provides a wonderful sleeping experience. Using a tent on the beach can provide shelter in case of a sudden rainstorm, and provide privacy for changing clothing. Many beaches are free for tent camping, and those that do charge a fee usually charge less than most campground sites.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
Things you need
- Small sections of tarp
Pitch your tent in a secure location. It is important to ensure that your tent is a safe distance from the water. Allow for the effects of the tide, storms, and strong waves. Always pitch your tent above the high-water mark, which is shown by deposited seaweed and debris. Try to find a location that is sheltered from wind, or a poorly timed gust could send your tent flying into the water like a parasail.
Stake your tent very securely, using all included guy ropes and stakes. Pitching your tent in sand will require more extensive staking, as the sand will not offer the same stability as dirt. If you are in a particularly high wind area or the sand does not provide reliable staking, you can stake your tent using sand anchors. At each corner of your tent, dig a hole that is at least one foot deep and one foot square, and lay a small section of tarp in the hole that is attached to the corner of your tent. Pile extra sand on top of this tarp section to make a solid anchor.
Remember that the beach can be much colder at night than landlocked campgrounds. Pack enough cold-weather clothing to ensure that your camping experience is not affected by the weather difference. Prepare for the possibility of wet weather as well.
Tips and warnings
- Camping without your rainfly can improve the airflow and scenery of your tent, but always have your rainfly on hand in case of a sudden shower.
- Check local restrictions and regulations on beach camping, and always confirm whether beach camping is allowed before planning your trip around a particular site.
- Many beaches and public places have restrictions on alcohol consumption, so check local restrictions before packing your cooler.
- Fires may or may not be permitted on a particular beach, so look into the restrictions on open flames and bring a camping stove if necessary.
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