What Do Tent Guy Lines Do?

The average camper doesn’t set up tent guy lines. Then again, the average camper doesn’t always know what tent guy lines are for. Maybe you’ve seen some cords dangling from your tent, but you’ve never bothered using them. Or maybe you’ve noticed loops on the corners or sides of your tent without knowing why they were there. It’s also possible that you know exactly what guy lines are, but you don’t think they’re necessary.

Tent guy lines greatly improve the performance of your tent, and they’re really easy to set up. Here’s what guy lines do, and why you should get in the habit of using them.

They’re not just for bad weather.

Some people assume that guy lines are intended for extreme weather conditions. Since most people tend to camp in pleasant weather, they choose not to guy out a tent because they don’t think that it’s necessary. They stake the four corners and feel satisfied that their tent is secure.

Guy lines do some important things:

  • Improve ventilation
  • Support the tent structure
  • Keep the tent dry

You don’t need to have bad weather to benefit from guy lines. Plus, weather can change quickly. Winds can start howling and push and pull on your tent. It doesn’t take much to topple a tent, and strong gusts can even break tent poles.

Why guy lines are important

Guying out a tent using tent guy lines helps reinforce your tent, keeping it stable and secure. Yes, this makes sure that your tent doesn’t move, but it also helps keep your tent from buckling in strong winds. The higher profile your tent, the more important guy lines are.

Guy lines help keep moisture off your tent. Pulling the fly taut prevents rain from pooling up on the outside of your tent. It also increases the space between your tent fly and the tent itself, which can help keep your tent dry if the fly leaks.

Keeping tension in the rain fly with tent guy lines also improves venting. Not only does this help keep your tent cool in the summer, but it also helps prevent condensation from building up in cold weather camping.

Setting up a guy line is easy

Setting up tent guy lines is simple, especially if you have line tensioners. Many tentsĀ  come with guy lines already attached. If your tent doesn’t come equipped with guy lines, it should at least have guy line loops or anchors.

You can typically see the angle at which your guy lines should be positioned. Follow the angle of the tent and stake the guy line in the ground. Make sure that they aren’t positioned too far from the tent, or people will trip over them all night, and probably all day too.

Then use the line tensioners to pull the guy line tight. You can also tighten guy lines with a trucker’s hitch or other knots, but tensioners make it easy to increase line tension without having to retie or restake guy lines.

Visit us at Uncle Sam’s Safari Outfitters for camping tents, camping equipment, and more!

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