Outdoor Retailer: Toughstakes for snow or sand

Toughstakes for staking tents and shelters in sand or snow.

A few years ago, engineer Eric Simonson was floating down southern Utah's Green River when he encountered a problem. Gusts of wind kept pulling the awnings out of the sandy beaches he and his friends had staked them on for shade.

"We tried over and over, and did dead men," Simonson said, but the stakes just wouldn't hold in the sand. Then he had a design moment and decided he could do better.

The result is the aluminum Toughstake, whose anchor point is at the bottom, versus the top, of the stake, thanks to a stainless steel tension cable that acts as guy wire,

Insert the wire through a small hole at the bottom of the stake; insert the stake into the sand or snow; secure the other end of the guy wire tightly to your shelter at the attachment point.

When anchored deeply in sand or snow, the contoured Toughstake is designed to have 10 times the anchoring force of other stakes, says Simonson.

The idea is that by putting the anchor point at the bottom of the stake, forces exerted on it will be transferred to the ground around it. And stakes will no longer be pulled out of loose sand and snow, and your shelter will stay put.

Toughstakes are available in small, medium, and large sizes; come four to a pack; and stack flat together.

Toughstakes Specs


  • Medium Stake (1.18 oz/33.45 g), Stake and Cable (1.37 oz/38.83 g), Four Pack $19.99
  • Medium Stake (4.2 oz/119.07 g), Stake and Cable (5.3 oz/150 oz, Four Pack $27.99
  • Large Stake (7.0 oz/198.44 g), Stake and Cable (7.88 oz/223.3 oz), Four Pack $34.99

Simonson gave us a demo of the stakes today at Outdoor Retailer.


Filed under: Gear News, Outdoor Retailer


1,663 reviewer rep
3,956 forum posts
January 21, 2011 at 6:50 a.m. (EST)

1 new customer here.

Living in coastal SC I have been tenting in sand for several years now, I can see why these should work.




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