How To Assemble A Big Camping Tent (Find OUT)

Camping is a great way to spend time with friends and family. You can pitch a tent, cook over an open fire, or just enjoy the great outdoors. 

But as any seasoned camper will tell you, setting up a big tent is not for beginners. It takes some practice and patience to assemble your camping tent correctly.

How to Set Up a Tent
Key Takeaways
How to assemble various types of camping gear
Importance of safety preparation for camping
Tips for proper fitting and adjustment of camping gear
How to assemble a camping bed
Further reading resources for learning how to set up tents
FAQs on camping gear assembly and tent set-up

Clear the Ground First

Before you begin, clear the ground of debris. This is especially important if you’re camping in an area with rocks or branches on the ground. After that, place a sturdy tarp over the ground and set up your tent on top of it. 

The tarp will protect your tent from any sharp items beneath it, as well as give you something to stand on while putting up your tent.

When setting up a big camping tent, make sure there’s no part of it touching any water source or other moisture-rich area that could cause mold or mildew if left for too long. 

After choosing a flat surface for your camp site and placing down some plastic sheets or tarps (you can also use stakes), lay out all parts of the tent so that they’re visible from above in order to give yourself an idea of how everything will fit together when assembled properly.

When you’re planning for a camping trip, one of the most important things to do is to make sure you have the right gear. Follow our tips on how to assemble a camping tent to avoid any unnecessary stress and ensure a smooth set up.

Set the Tent in Place

Once you have the tent set up and ready to go, it’s time to get down to business. First, make sure that your tent is on level ground! 

If you are setting up near water or sand, it might be a good idea to put down a tarp or other material underneath the tent so that it doesn’t sink into the soft earth. You don’t want your $300 investment sitting in mud or wet sand all weekend when it could be enjoying nice hard rock instead!

Second: Don’t lift by one side of the tent! If you need help moving yours around (and we’re guessing by now that you do)

Grab onto two corners at once with each hand and move them together as if they were one corner piece it will feel easier than trying to lift only half of an unbalanced structure with some large metal rods sticking out from under it.

Tips for Setting Up Your Tent on Level Ground

Look for a flat, even surface to set up your tent. Avoid places with rocks, sharp objects, or other uneven terrain.
If the ground is not level, use a shovel or other tool to clear away debris and make the area as flat as possible.
Use a level or a small bubble level app on your phone to confirm that the tent is evenly placed and does not slant to one side.
Consider using a tarp or footprint underneath the tent to protect it from moisture and damage.
Be sure to stake down the corners and guylines for added stability in any type of weather.
Once your tent is set up, step inside to make sure that all the doors and windows are aligned and working properly.

Fold Out Poles and Connect Parts

Unfold the tent and lay it flat on the ground, making sure that all of its parts are unfolded, including any hubbed connectors and poles.

Open up the outermost section of your tent to reveal a long strip of plastic along one edge. This is your tent body; you’ll want to spread it out so that it’s completely flat as well, with no folds or wrinkles in it at all (you can do this by gently pulling on each corner until they’re even).

Attach pole sections together: Place two poles next to each other and push them into one of three grommets located at each corner of the tent body two near where two corners meet up with another pole piece (one for each)

Then one more in between them where these two larger sections meet another smaller middle section (this last one goes halfway through).

Insert remaining tent poles into their respective holes: The next step is inserting all remaining sections into their respective grommets using similar techniques described above but don’t worry if things aren’t lining up perfectly right away! 

You may have shifted some pieces around slightly when moving them into place during setup thus far; just adjust accordingly before continuing onward here onwards through this process until everything fits correctly within its given pocket space without overlapping onto any other neighboring materials around themselves too much.”

Being prepared for your camping trip is essential to help keep you and your loved ones safe in the great outdoors. Explore our tips on how to stay safe while camping to learn more about important safety measures to take and gear to pack.

Construct The Tent Frame

The next step is to construct the tent frame. Make sure that you’ve got all the pieces of your tent, and that they are all in good condition. 

Lay out the poles where you plan on assembling them, so that when it comes time to put them together they will be easy to find.

Now, connect the ends of each pole with a “joint pin.” These pins are little steel pegs that fit into holes drilled in both ends of each pole (and most tents come with some extras).

Next, connect one set of joints together by sliding on another joint pin through both sets at once – this will make it easier for you later on when you want to extend or shorten your canvas walls as needed for ventilation control during hot summer days or cold winter nights.

This will only work if everything is square though! If not then get ready for an hour or two spent measuring diagonals and trying again until everything looks right from every angle…

Tips for Constructing a Tent Frame

Start by laying out all the tent poles, sleeves and clips. Make sure that each segment of the pole is in good condition and free from any visible cracks or other damage.
Identify the poles that correspond to the various portions of the tent (e.g. the rainfly, main tent body, vestibules etc.).
Insert poles through the pole sleeves on the tent, following any designated color-coding or instructions provided.
Attach the clips or hooks on the tent to the poles, starting from the corners and working your way up. Verify each attachment as you go, ensuring that all the poles are properly in place with no slack.
Once poles and clips are secured, step back to check that the tent frame is properly standing, and make any necessary adjustments.
Double-check that guy lines or cords are attached to the tent frame according to the instructions, and stake them down to anchor the tent into the ground.

Note: Depending on the tent model, the order of these steps may vary. Follow the manufacturer instructions provided to ensure proper assembly.

Set Up The Rain Fly

Take the rain fly off of its bag and lay it out flat on the ground. If you can’t find the rain fly, check inside one of your tent bags or in your storage area for something that looks like a large shower curtain.

Attach hooks to the edges of the roof where you will be attaching them to poles (this is called “grommeting”). Make sure that these are evenly spaced from each other so that they will cover as much surface area as possible when attached to poles later on in this process.

Attach clips all along the bottom edge of each side panel so that when you raise them up, they’ll attach themselves to poles underneath each one–these are called “ties” and tying them together keeps everything tight and secure during windy conditions! 

Now we’ve got all these pieces ready so now let’s get started on actually setting up our tent!

Comfortable and well-adjusted backpacks can make all the difference when you’re hitting the trails. Follow our guide on how to adjust your camping backpack to ensure your backpack is properly fitted and equipped for your next backcountry adventure.

Connect the Rain Fly to The Tent Frame

Now that you have the tent frame and rain fly in place, it’s time to connect them. You will want to make sure that your tent is centered on the rain fly and that it is taut as well. 

If there are any tears or holes in your rain fly, take care of those by sewing up any rips or patches before continuing with assembly. 

When you’re ready, start at one corner of your tent (the corner closest to where you started) and fold over a flap on each side so they meet up with the ends of your rainfly’s ceiling panels. 

To secure everything together, use small pieces of duct tape or bungie cords if necessary until everything is secure!

Stake Down The Tent

Staking down your tent is the most important part of putting up a big camping tent. You want to make sure that it’s securely fastened to the ground so that it doesn’t collapse during a windstorm or thunderstorm.

There are two ways to stake down your tent: 1) use a mallet or hammer, and 2) use stakes with loops on them, which makes staking much easier because you aren’t trying to pound through thick material with a hammer or mallet (which can damage your stake).

If your tent has loops on its stakes, be sure to lift up each loop before inserting them into the ground so that you don’t hit any rocks and dent your stakes!

A quality camping chair can help you fully relax and enjoy the beauty of nature. Read our tips on how to assemble a camping chair to learn how to set up and enjoy a comfortable and functional outdoor seating solution.

Tie Down Guy Lines and Tent Fasteners

Once you’ve got your tent fasteners secured to the ground, it’s time to secure them to the tent. To do this, you’ll need guy lines the ropes that connect a tent to the ground. 

You can purchase or make these yourself using rope or webbing (the latter is stronger and easier to work with).

Guy lines come in a variety of lengths and thicknesses, but most tents have enough space for four or more guy line anchors at each corner of their base. 

These are typically placed at 1/3 from each end point of the tent footprint; here are some measurements for those who want “perfectly” spaced anchors:

  • 20’x14′ tent = 6 feet from center point on each side
  • 12’x16′ tent = 4 feet from center point on each side
  • 8’x10′ tent = 3 feet from center point on each side

Once you’ve determined where your anchor points will be placed, use an awl or drill bit to create holes where needed. 

Thread your guy line through one side of its stake holder before tying it off with a bowline knot (see diagram) so that it will stay put when tensioned during set up later on!

Check for Damage and Leaks

Check for damage and leaks. You’re going to want to check the tent over thoroughly before you begin, looking for any spots of wear or tears in the fabric and any leaks. 

If you find any, you can repair them yourself with a patch kit (check your tent’s instructions), or take it to a shop if it’s too complicated for your DIY skills.

Getting a good night’s sleep when camping is essential for a successful trip. Check out our guide on how to assemble a camping bed to make sure your sleeping arrangements are comfortable and secure during your next camping adventure.

Dress Up the Tent Interior With Custom Add-Ons

You can dress up your tent interior with all kinds of cool add-ons. Here are some suggestions:

A cot – This is a great way to add extra comfort and sleep space for one or two people, but also allows you to set up a private sleeping area separate from the main tent floor.

A table – Whether it’s just a small folding table or an actual kitchen table, having one inside your tent will help save space and make it easier for cooking and eating meals outside.

Lanterns and lights – These can be hung from rafters or strung along walls to light up the space around you as well as provide ambient lighting so that you don’t miss out on any socializing opportunities while inside your big camping tent!

Clean up Camping Equipment

Clean up after yourself. Don’t leave your tent out in the sun to dry, and don’t leave your gear outside in the rain. 

This can damage the fabric of a nylon tent, making it less waterproof and more susceptible to mildew and mold. If you’re worried about keeping your gear clean after camping, here are some tips:

Wash sleeping bags with warm water and a mild detergent like Woolite or Tide; then hang them on a clothesline to dry completely before storing them for next time.

Wipe down any dirt that gets on your tent floors with a damp rag; then hang them out on a line to dry before returning home or packing up for storage (if you haven’t used them in several years).

Keep everything else clean by wiping off any mud or dust before storing it away in its original bag/box/case


If you’re looking to buy a big camping tent, we hope this guide has helped you find the perfect one! 

Remember to consider the size, features and durability when making your purchase decision. 

We would love to hear from you in the comments section below if any of our suggestions were helpful or if there are other tips we should include in future posts on how to choose the right tent for your needs.

Further Reading

Here are some additional resources if you’re looking to learn more about setting up tents:

WikiHow’s guide on how to assemble a tent provides step-by-step instructions with helpful illustrations to make the process easier.

The Family Handyman offers a helpful article on how to set up a tent with photos and detailed explanations on the different types of tents and how to set them up.

For even more in-depth advice, check out REI’s guide on tent set-up, which includes tips on selecting a tent, site selection and preparation, and more.


Q: How do I choose the right tent for my needs?

A: Consider factors such as the number of people who will be using the tent, the type of camping you’ll be doing, and whether you need any special features like extra storage or vestibules. For more detailed advice, check out REI’s guide on choosing a tent.

Q: What gear do I need to set up a tent?

A: At a minimum, you’ll need a tent, stakes, guylines or cords, and a mallet or hammer for driving in the stakes. You may also want to bring a footprint or tarp to protect the bottom of your tent from damage.

Q: How do I find a good spot to set up my tent?

A: Look for level ground with good drainage and solid soil. Avoid setting up your tent in low-lying areas where rainwater can collect, and steer clear of areas with sharp rocks or other potential hazards.

Q: How can I make sure my tent stays dry in wet conditions?

A: Start by choosing a good tent site with good drainage, and make sure you’ve waterproofed your tent and rainfly. Set up your tent properly to ensure that seams are tight and secure, and use a footprint or tarp to protect the bottom of your tent from moisture.

Q: Are there any special considerations I should keep in mind when setting up a tent in extreme conditions?

A: Yes, extreme weather can make tent setup challenging. Be sure to choose a sheltered and secure spot and make sure your gear is properly staked and anchored. Consider using snow stakes, sand anchors, or other specialized stakes depending on the conditions you’ll be facing. For more advice, check out REI’s guide on mountain tent camping.