Tent Packing: Stuff, Roll, Or Fold?

12:26 p.m. on July 31, 2018 (EDT)
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Tent Packing: Stuff, Roll, Or Fold?

Tackling the age-old question should you stuff or fold your tent?

At the end of every outdoor adventure, you're confronted with an inscrutable dilemma: Do you stuff, roll, or fold your tent into its stuffsack? Poll your fellow hikers and you'll see everyone has a technique and a reason for why theirs is the best. Challenge them, and you might get a tent pole in the eye.

How do you pack your Tent: Stuff, Roll, Or Fold? and My question is do you pack up your Tent if Rolled up with Tent Poles rolled up inside your Tent?

I have always folded then Rolled up my Tent since 1998 with my Tent Poles inside my Tent. and I have noticed After Time when I put my Tent Poles inside folded then Rolled up my Tent.
and Since 11-2008 I have used Eureka backcountry 1 person Tent, REI Co-Op Passage 1 man Tent, Catoma Combat 1 man Tent then I put my Tent Poles inside folded then Rolled up my Tent
after time I noticed pin holes, small cut that looked like from Tent Poles on the Tent body floor. and for my Bicycle Touring/Stealth Bicycle Camping Trips I have 2 Two man Tent in my Storage Unit with my Tent Poles inside folded then Rolled up my Tent: "Marmot Tungsten 2 man Tent in Shadow Green/Moss Green and Nemo Galaxi 2p Tent I am going to remove the Tent Poles from inside both 2 man Tent's" and since 9-2017 I have been using the Kelty TraiLogic TN2 Tent in the morning I have folded then Rolled up my Tent packed in the cube with Tent Poles between the Tent Body and Tent Fly then I have noticed pin holes, small cut that looked like from Tent Poles on the Tent body floor. and I am going to keep my Tent Poles/Tent Stakes away from my Tent when I am packing up my Tent in the morning.

https://youtu.be/eLQkmSoqHvU

5:18 p.m. on July 31, 2018 (EDT)
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Depends on the shelter, the material its made from, etc. My old Lightheart Gear Solo I basically folded some, just to get it to a manageable size, then rolled. My SMD Haven a similar approach. My Gatewood Cape I just stuff because it's smaller and easier to manage the whole thing from the start. Trekking poles hold up all of these shelters so no tent poles. Stakes in a separate DIY tyvek bag.

6:00 p.m. on July 31, 2018 (EDT)
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I fold mine to about as wide as the bag is long, then roll. My reasoning is that doing this puts any hooks, toggles, etc, on the inside of the burrito where they’ll be far less likely to catch on something and tear it or tear themselves off. Poles go in their own bag and are strapped to the side of the pack. If the tent fly is wet it goes in the mesh shovel pocket, otherwise it’s rolled up inside the tent roll. 

3:49 a.m. on August 1, 2018 (EDT)
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If I read the OP correctly the question applies to how one stores the tent at home, when not in use.

At home I store my tents loose, in those large black storage tots with yellow top lids you get from the hardware store.  One tent/fly per tote, the stakes and poles at the bottom, under the tent and fly.  Gotta breathe.

But while hiking my tents are stowed on/in the pack two different ways.  I fold and roll my dyneenma (cuben) fabric tents.  they fold to a smaller volume than would if they were stuffed into sacks.  But tents made from all other fabrics I just stuff as it is the quickest way to deal with them.  Tents stakes and poles are in a different sack than that used to stash the tent.

Ed

8:32 a.m. on August 1, 2018 (EDT)
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At home:  stored loose in tubs like Ed so they can "breathe" a bit.  That is only after they are completely dried out of course.  No poles with current tent options (trekking pole supported).

On trail: Fly (or tarp layer of my current Tarptent) goes in the outside "wet" pocket of my pack often rolled up but sometimes in its stuff sack.  Inner portion goes rolled up into my pack so I always have a dry home to move into at night even if it keeps raining and the outer never dries out during the day.

8:55 a.m. on August 1, 2018 (EDT)
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Tent poles in their own bag, to protect the tent.  Then the tent is folded into a narrow strip and rolled up so that it fits back into the bag.  Just the way the tent was shipped to me. 

1:41 a.m. on August 6, 2018 (EDT)
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Roll definitely 

If you have a good ground sheet then your tent body should never touch the ground.

I will put my tent body and fly on top of the ground sheet and fold it inward to the size of the bag. Then roll it  

Then stuff you arm down the side of the bag to make space so you don’t catch the tent when you put the bag of poles away  

 When putting the tent out I will do the opposite and the tent body never touches the dirty ground

10:39 a.m. on August 7, 2018 (EDT)
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Currently being I am a bicycle tourer, I roll mine and stick it in my panniers. 

12:13 p.m. on August 7, 2018 (EDT)
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Huh. I was taught (I think in NOLS) that always folding your tent the same way makes creases and that 's where the floor and fly coating will start to peel. So I always stuff, often keep the poles separate in the narrow pole bag that comes with the tent, on the outside or sometimes vertically inside the pack. If it's dry sometimes I just stuff the tent into the bottom of my pack, tucking it into the shaped corners to fill them up. For storage stuffed loosely in the tent bag with poles and pegs, they're usually 1.5 to 2x bigger than they need to be, but the tent must be bone dry.

2:28 p.m. on August 7, 2018 (EDT)
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I have heard concerns with folding the same way each time...never had that issue as when I roll mine in the pack its kind of random arrangement so no repeated folds and when stored its stuffed in a loose pile in an overly large tub.

9:01 p.m. on August 18, 2018 (EDT)
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IJ have a lightheart solong 6 that I roll then put in my bag.At home loose in a bin

11:32 a.m. on August 19, 2018 (EDT)
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Makes no difference, just get it in there.

1:13 a.m. on August 20, 2018 (EDT)
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I wasn't always smart, I bought my first REI Half Dome tent back in the early-mid 1990s.  I pulled the tent and at first had difficulty getting it back in its stuff sack smoothly.  When buying my REI Geo Mountain 4 tent, I paid alot of attention looked at how exactly the tent was placed in the stuff sack, properly.  I have always put my tent back the same way since then.

9:04 a.m. on August 20, 2018 (EDT)
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Stuff sacks can make your pack look like it is full of bowling balls. 

11:21 a.m. on August 24, 2018 (EDT)
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Ultralight authors sometimes suggest doing away with all stuff sacks. It allows for stuffed equipment to fill all the nooks and crannies in your pack and be more compact.  Breaking camp this week, I was waiting for my hiking partner to finish packing up as usual.  He mentioned when struggling with his tent, that " even the stuff sack has a stuff sack."  He was referring to the tent stake bag. I am using stuff sacks less and less and find it to be libertating not to have put things back in the way they came from the store. 

When using an external frame where equipment is strapped on the outside of the bag stuff sacks still have a purpose.  For modern internal frames, stuffing is an advantage.

7:18 p.m. on August 25, 2018 (EDT)
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ppine said:

"Ultralight authors sometimes suggest doing away with all stuff sacks. It allows for stuffed equipment to fill all the nooks and crannies in your pack and be more compact..." 

"When using an external frame where equipment is strapped on the outside of the bag stuff sacks still have a purpose..."

 +1 

But I do think stashing tent stakes in a tiny stuff bag is warranted; it reduces the chance the stake tips may damage other equipment, and keeps them together, so less likely to get misplaced.  Of course ULers can dispense with tent stakes and just use heavy rocks to anchor corners and guy out points on their tent.

Ed

11:04 a.m. on August 31, 2018 (EDT)
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Good idea. 

6:15 p.m. on August 31, 2018 (EDT)
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I'm UL but keep stakes in a sack. I made it myself out of 1443R tyvek, weighs 1 gram. I use rocks whenever possible because I prefer it, so much easier to adjust the pitch by dragging a rock than moving a stake (there's always a tree root or submerged rock in the exact spot the stake needs to go). Even in places I expect to use rocks every night I carry stakes as well, you never know.

2:01 a.m. on September 1, 2018 (EDT)
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JRinGeorgia said:

"..Even in places I expect to use rocks every night I carry stakes as well, you never know."

 The voice of experience!

Ed

6:40 a.m. on September 1, 2018 (EDT)
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whomeworry said:

ppine said:

"Ultralight authors sometimes suggest doing away with all stuff sacks. It allows for stuffed equipment to fill all the nooks and crannies in your pack and be more compact..." 

"When using an external frame where equipment is strapped on the outside of the bag stuff sacks still have a purpose..."

 +1 

But I do think stashing tent stakes in a tiny stuff bag is warranted; it reduces the chance the stake tips may damage other equipment, and keeps them together, so less likely to get misplaced.  Of course ULers can dispense with tent stakes and just use heavy rocks to anchor corners and guy out points on their tent.

Ed

 +1 for this. When I'm out I am cutting down a trash compactor bag and stuffing the tent, fly and footprint( if I'm using one) in it. Thanks to the kids growing up I now have a spare bedroom. Tents and flies are just laying on the spare bed, Quilts and bags in cotton storage bags hanging up.

8:36 a.m. on September 1, 2018 (EDT)
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I've got the same gear storage area Jason, for the same reason, but the kids keep coming back to visit and interfering with my gear room!

October 17, 2018
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