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Camping Tents

My first memories of camping tents are not very pleasant. They are of WWII surplus canvas pup tents. They smelled, they leaked, they were heavy.

When I started to camp out on weeklong canoeing trips in Maine I graduated to a larger, heavier canvas tents. They smelled, they leaked, they were heavy.

In computers and digital SLR cameras I tend to be an early adopter. Camping gear for me is like the burr that sticks to your socks when hiking, you just can't seem to be able to get rid of it. When I was on those weeklong canoeing trips in Maine I took along my sturdy, and heavy cast iron frying pans and dutch ovens. Thirty years later I still raid my kitchen for those same cast iron frying pans. My kids absconded with the dutch oven.

Camping Tents have come along way since WWII surplus canvas pup tents. Now they are lightweight, don't smell and don't leak. Camping at 8,000 feet in Yellowstone I did start to realize that three season tents might not be the best idea for mountain camping no matter what the season. I can tell you that it is hard to get out of a warm sleeping bag an hour before sunrise when it's 30 degrees in the tent. Death Valley camping finally convinced me that three season tents while roomier might not be the best idea. Granted Death Valley campsites can be stark and barren, but returning to your campsite and discovering that your tent blew away is not my idea of adventure camping.

Luckily for me my future son-in-law was gearing up to climb Denali and passed on a duck-taped (Kea Bird attack in New Zealand) all season mountaineering tent. Unlike my three-season tent, the all season mountaineering tent is designed for high winds, heavy rains and low temperatures. I still have my three-season tent but can't remember the last time I set it up.

Practice setting up a new tent in your yard before your trip. Trying to learn how to set up a new tent when it's windy, raining and dark is not a lot of fun. Remember when getting a campsite that the best, sometimes only, selection is in the morning before ten o'clock. St. Mary Campground and Fish Creek Campground accept reservations.

Glacier Naational Park and especially Yellowstone National Park are wildlife parks. When you pick you campsite look around, if there is an option, before setting up your tent. I made the mistake of pitching a tent in Yellowstone in the middle of an established game trail. Not to smart! You also don't want to hav tie down lines going to far away from you tent and then find a large animal tangled in those lines. Now if someone can develop soundproofing for tents. When you plan on your camping trip little do you realize that the campground might not be that quite, peacefull place. This is highly dependant on how well the campground host is doing their job.