Your Outdoor Skills: Taking Care of Your Gear Part 2 - Tents and Cooking Tools
After days, weeks, or even months on the trail, you arrive home dirty, tired, and happy. You’ve pitched your tent so many times you could do it in your sleep. And you’ve done your best to keep your cutlery, pans, and stove as clean as possible. Only a little dirt added an extra crunch to your meals. You’re on a post-trip high and you’re already starting to think about the next time you can go on your next adventure. But before you start planning, let’s take care of the gear you used so it’s ready for your next trip.
Your tent acted as your home during your time on the trail. It protected you from the elements, critters, and out of the dirt. You made it a cozy sleeping environment you looked forward to lying your head down after long days. To keep this welcome environment, make sure you clean it when you return from your trip and store it well.
To clean your tent, you’ll want to set the tent up, without the rainfly. Choose a nice sunny day, set up the tent outside, open the windows, and let the tent air dry for a few hours. Next you’ll want to sweep out the inside of the tent with a brush and dustpan. If it is mostly loose dirt that can be easily removed by shaking out the tent, you can do that as well. The rainfly can hang from a clothes line. For the stakes, you want to make sure there isn’t any dirt residue on them. You can use a rag to wipe these clean.
If you don’t have space to pitch your tent outside, you can pitch your tent inside. Or, you can hang your tent over a deck or balcony railing.
Before storing your tent, make sure it is completely dry. It’s best to store your tent in the tent sack it came in. We like to pack up our tents by rolling the tent inside the rainfly. One way to do this is by laying the rainfly out and folding it into thirds longways. Next, lay the tent on the rainfly and fold into thirds as well. Next, place the poles and steaks at one of the ends, and start rolling it all together.
Littlbug Tip: You can be proactive on the trail to keep your tent clean by not wearing shoes inside the tent. Slip them off before climbing in to help reduce the amount of dirt inside the tent. Another way to care for your tent on the trail is to shake it out before you tear it down to pack it up. After removing the rainfly and steaks, unzip a door, pick the tent up, flip it door side down, and give it a good shake. This helps get loose dirt out of the tent.
Cleaning your stove is pretty simple. If you used the Littlbug stove, wipe down the individual pieces with a damp rag and set them out to dry. Once dry, you can easily store them in the Littlbug Stove Pouch. You can practice the same cleaning process for gas stoves.
For eating utensils, mugs, bowls, pots, and pans you should wash them using hot soapy water. We recommend hand washing these items. Some items may have finishes on them that can be damaged by going through the dishwasher. We always suggest checking the care instructions on the packaging or the company’s website before placing anything in the dishwasher. Make sure everything is completely dry before putting it away until your next trip.