Five Tips for Avoiding Condensation with a Single Wall Shelter

Any single wall tent or shelter, regardless or material or manufacturer, will be prone to condensation. Even a flat tarp with no one under it will collect some moisture in the right conditions.

Luckily, there are a handful of easy steps to help avoid condensation issues.

1) The first one is to avoid setting up camp in low, open, grassy areas.

2) Furthermore, you should also avoid sleeping near areas with high humidity like lakes, streams or rivers when possible.

3) Next, try and make sure that you camp under tree cover if available. Trees keep the air warmer which keeps the relative humidity lower. Tree cover also blocks cold wet air from settling on your shelter.

4) If possible, you should avoid having more that one person in the tent to help to cut down on condensation. The added breath and vapor from an additional person can greatly increase the possibility of trapping moisture on the interior of your shelter.

5) Lastly. set up your shelter in such a way that, if possible, you can still keep your entry way open while the rear or side of your shelter sheds the wind. Having your entry way or doors open can greatly encourage ventilation which can be a major factor in minimizing the potential for condensation.

Our tents are designed to have the "upwind" side of the tent facing into the wind.  The upwind side of the tent is the one with our labels on both corners. This will allow you to properly utilize the overlapping storm doors to properly ventilate the tent.

The large overhang on the peaks will usually allow you to leave at least one of the doors open.  In a lot of cases you can leave all of the doors open.

Pro Tip: It is always a good idea to carry a Lightload towel to wipe down the interior of the tent in those occasions where you are caught in a bad storm that could lead to condensation.

How to Hang a Bear Bag Matt

About the Author
Matt "Details" Favero is the Brand Manager of Zpacks and has been with the company since the garage days of 2010.  With thousands of miles of hiking under his belt, his experience provides valuable understanding of the hiking community and the demands hikers have for their gear.