The Different Types of Tent Stakes

Tent stakes are an essential piece of camping equipment. Unless you want to see your tent blow away in the wind like an expensive and much needed dandelion seed, you always want to make sure that you have your stakes. However, there are many different types of tent stakes, and they all are good for different things. Sometimes, bringing the wrong kind of tent peg can be the same as not bringing stakes at all.

The four most common tent stake materials you will see are titanium, aluminum, steel, and plastic.

Titanium tent stakes are going to be the lightest and strongest option. They’re basically unbreakable feathers that you can hammer into the ground. Tent stakes that are made from titanium typically have a smaller diameter than aluminum which makes them easier to hammer into the ground. Plus, titanium is able to flex without bending which makes them the ideal choice for hard and frozen soil. With all of its advantages, titanium stakes can end up costing a pretty penny.

Aluminum tent stakes will usually hold up just fine for softer to medium soil. They’re lightweight, but unlike titanium, can bend easily and even snap in frozen soil. Aluminum tent stakes are cheap and super common.

Tent stakes that are made out of plastic are usually beaters. They are big, bulky, and dirt cheap. Since plastic tent stakes are relatively bulky, they end up being pretty tough. However, they still can bend and break, which the tips almost always do. Unlike metal tent stakes that can be reshaped, plastic stakes are done when broken. Plastic stakes are good for soft and medium soils. Companies are even making

Steel tent stakes aren’t as common as aluminum, but they are still popularly used. Steel tent stakes are going to be tougher, but also much heavier than aluminum stakes. Steel stakes can be made in in a thin diameter for more recreational camping, but they can also be made into long, heavy duty rebar tent pegs for frozen and clay soils. Steel stakes can be used for medium and harder soils.

What your tent stakes are made of is important, but it’s not the only thing to consider. The shape of a stake can be just as important as its material. For example, if you hammer a smooth, skinny tent peg into sand, it’s going to get ripped out if someone sneezes to hard. You need stake that have a lot of surface area when it comes to staking in sand, gravel, and soft soil.

The most common stake you will find are round wire. It’s the most basic shape, and is designed for general use. It’s your Jack of all trades tent stake. This design is typically going to be the weakest and most prone to bending, depending on what it’s made of.

Screw shaped stakes are great for sandy areas, or regions with loose soil.

V-shape stakes are great to have. Think of “v” as standing for versatile. With their large surface area, these are good for soft soil as well as packed soil.

Some people use the term “peg” to refer to tent stakes in general, but it can also refer to nail shaped stakes. Nails, or pegs, are typically longer and thicker than your standard stakes, and they can be used with a hammer rather than a mallet. They’re very good for frozen, hard, and rocky soil, but not good at all for sand, gravel, soft soil, etc.

There are children without tents in the world. Use your stakes and keep your tent in good condition!

 

3 Comments

  1. […] shape of the stake will also have an effect on how easy it is to drive in and how well it stays put. If you find […]

  2. […] ​Tent stakes are usually made out of steel, carbon fiber and aluminum. Carbon fiber is the lightweight option; steel is the most durable and aluminum is somewhere in between. There are even combinations of two materials, like sheathed carbon fiber with aluminum. […]

  3. It’s a wonderful experience. Thanks for sharing!

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