How to Pack a Tent in a Backpack

Why You Need A Tent

In these modern times when we all are hooked on our phones and technology, going out and experiencing the wilderness is a great option to take a break. Every day the need for hiking, camping, and other rural expeditions is becoming more of a necessity.

While we were sitting down to write this article on how to pack a tent in a backpack, we realized that before we tell you how to pack a tent, it is crucial to know why you need to pack it. Well, the most basic answer is that while you are out there in the wilderness you would need some sort of shelter to keep you safe and secure from all sorts of danger.

One of the most fundamental aspects of that is having a reliable shelter. Knowing how to pack a tent in a backpack so that it is properly packed and at the ready is fundamental in some cases and there might be more to it than you think.

The significance of having a tent increases to a wider extent if you are traveling with your family and kids. If this is your first hiking trip then there are a few things that you need to keep in mind before you go out packing your tent.

First of all, ask the question that how comfortable is it for you to be sleeping in a tent, because as fun as it may seem to be if you are not used to sleeping in tough conditions then an overnight hiking trip might not be your ideal journey.

What you can do is go on a hiking trip to locations that have cottages to stay in for the night. This way, you will be able to get your hiking in and spend the night comfortably as well.

Roughing It?

Most hikers out there do not want to carry heavy backpacks on their trips. And packing a tent surely adds a lot of weight to your backpack. Now, you know better what type of hiker you are.

If we consider that you are someone who doesn’t like to pack much and carrying a tent is not your way to go but you still want something to stay safe and secure during your sleep then go for a hammock.

It is lightweight, easy to pack, easy to set up, and most importantly will keep you safe above the ground.

Factors To Keep In Mind Before You Learn how to pack a tent in a backpack

So now that you have decided to finally get that long-awaited tent, it is time you get to know a few things that will help you in packing it inside a backpack. So without wasting any time, let’s get into.

Does It Fit In The Backpack?

When you are getting a tent or your backpack whichever you get first, make sure that the tent will fit inside the backpack. Because otherwise, you will need to carry your tent externally and that is not a very pleasant experience.

Regardless, if you have already invested in buying a backpack and now the tent that you got later does not fit, then that is nothing to worry about. What you can do is get a compression bag, as it will assist you in picking the tent as close as possible.

Make Sure You Have An Internal Frame

One of the many things that make carrying a tent easier is if you have a backpack with an internal frame. This is because internal frames will give you extra space inside making it easier for you to pack the tent.

Backpacks with internal frames are also built with aluminum stays across the back, helping the backpack to keep its shape no matter what you put inside and also does not eliminate any room inside.

How to Attach Your Tent To The Outer Side Of Your Backpack

We want to and try to do our best to cater to all different types of hikers and campers out there. If you have a backpack that has an outside framework then there is nothing to worry about because you can attach the tent to the outer part as well.

However, before we give you a step by step guide on how you can do it, it is important to let you know that there are certain risks attached to packing the tent on the exterior.

The first and foremost is the danger of your tent getting snagged in between your hikes. Because when the tent is packed on the outside it is exposed to rocks, branches, and other sharp obstacles. Even a slight pinch from a branch might ruin the tent forever.

When your tent is packed inside your backpack it stays all safe and secured. However, packing it outside means that it will be hanging out and it might fall off from your backpack anytime.

No matter how well you attach it, it is still not guaranteed that the tent will stay in place. You will never get the peace of mind that you would have if the tent was packed inside.

Considering that you have gone through the process of determining whether your backpack will support outdoor packing or not, let’s now get into how to pack a tent in a backpack.

Backpacks with external frames tend to have many different compression straps and attachments to help stick things to it. And this is what will help you out in packing the tent. Make sure that the straps work fine and will hold on to your tent strongly.

A pro tip from us would be to use the closed-loop ties to attach the tent. Because, in case if your tent does slip off, these loops on the two ends will prevent that from happening.

Giving you a bit of peace of mind. Instead of putting the tent anywhere, try to attach the crate to the bottom of your backpack. This will prevent you from any major hip or spine injuries.

How To Pack A Tent In A Backpack The Right Way-

With so many different articles online about how to pack your tent into a backpack it can often get confusing on which one to follow. Regardless, there is nothing to worry about because we have tried to make it as easy as possible to teach you how to pack a tent in a backpack the right way.


You will need to lay the tent flat on the floor in a horizontal manner so that all the tent poles are in their tote. Then you will need to line up the bag with the front of the tent.

A common mistake most people do is that they line it up in the middle. Make sure you do not do that. Packing the rods will help you a great deal because it will make it much easier to pack the bag now.


Now comes the most sensitive part and that is rolling the tent. Before you go on doing this, make sure that the rod bag is sided, as this will make sure that the tent is wrapped up directly and also provides the necessary support. Now slowly, wrap the tent around the structure of the rods.


Make sure that everything is nice and tight. If you want to know if you have worked the way to packing your tent in the best possible way then you will need to see if it is tightly rolled on not.

A tightly rolled tent will not only keep things nice and rigid but will also leave a lot of space inside your backpack.

Trips And Tricks

We always love to share a few pro tips for you on each of our articles. And just like every other article of ours, we couldn’t resist this one of how to pack a tent in a backpack as well.

Something no one else will ever tell you is that you need to pack the tent in your backpack only when it is dry. Packing a wet tent will not only be one of the hardest jobs out there, but the tent will also add a lot of weight with the water and eventually make a hassle to carry around with. So keep this in mind and always pack your tent when it is dry.

Heavy Bottoms

A pro trip for every hiker for packing their backpacks is to always store the heavy items on the bottom of the backpack and the lighter ones on top. So pack the heavy items like your sleeping bag at the bottom and your tent in the middle part as it is not so heavy, neither not so light.

This will keep the weight balance maintained, preventing any severe injuries. When it comes to things that are lightweight and essential items on the top for easy access.

How To Repack The Tent After The Trip

So you have successfully packed your hiking backpack inside your backpack and went on your trip. But now, there is a bigger problem, because after using the tent you are not being able to repack it. Well, nothing to worry about because we will help you out there because there is nothing more frustrating than repacking a used tent again.

The first thing that you need to do is clean the tent along with all the poles and pegs and spread the tent completely flat to let it dry. Make sure that you have dried both sides or else it will create more hassle.

Once everything is dried down, you will need to set the tent poles in their respective bags in addition to the edge of the tent. Then start rolling up the tent using the tent poles as a kind of structure for the rolling of the tent.

Before you are done finishing with the roll-up, remember to put the tent pegs in their bags as well, or else the bag will lose shape and rigidity. And that is pretty much it, follow these steps and you will be good to go.

We have focused so much on packing the poles along because it makes carrying and packing the tent so much easier.

However, if you still are not able to pack it and nothing seems to be working, then we would suggest you get a bigger backpack or a compression bag for that matter as it will give you a lot more space and convenience as well.

Practice It At Home

As much as we try our best to help you out on how to pack a tent in a backpack, it is still very practical and you need it to do it yourself. We would suggest that after reading this article, bring up all your gear and then start packing that tent multiple times.

Because often when we are going on our trips, packing is the last thing we worry about and tend to rush it till the last hour. Well, rushing is not something that you can do while packing a tent. So keep in mind and try practicing it yourself multiple times.

The Sky Is The Limit

We always encourage not only hiking but all different types of outdoor activities. These days when technology has taken over us so intensively, it is very crucial to lose yourself in the wilderness from time to time away from the internet.

It does not matter what you are going to do or who you are going with, as long as you explore the unknown and indulge in new experiences.

Yes, hiking gear is important and also a bit pricey at times as well. But we can assure you that the investment you make will surely be worth it for a lifetime.

Read Also: Best Budget Backpacking Tent