What to Bring When Camping in the Rain

Nobody wants to feel miserable even if they’re planning to fulfill their adventurous desires in the middle of nowhere. Camping in the rain necessitates the ideal gear along with the required know-how otherwise it can turn out to be life-threatening as well. An all-day rain can ruin the whole camping trip unless you protect yourself from the rain. So you should be well-prepared on facing the obvious obstacles, and take all the measures to prevent any mishaps.

To make your camping trip enjoyable you must know the right place to set up the tent, how to stay dry, and the things you can do while it’s raining in the outdoors.

Camping in the rain (or this case hail) can still be fun with proper preperation!

How to Stay Dry When Camping in the Rain

The key to staying dry when camping in the rain is focusing on items that are waterproof or provide insulation. Waterproof clothes play a huge role here because even if you face a slight amount of rain, your clothes should protect your skin. Avoid cotton at all costs, and try wearing waterproof jackets and pants. Also, carry a separate pair of shoes to wear inside the tent. If you do not change your footwear, the tent is bound to get muddy and nobody wants that.

Carrying extra clothes is a must when camping in the rain. If you get wet in the rain, you must change into dry clothes as soon as you enter the tent. Do not forget to grab an extra pair of socks as well. Thermal socks would be ideal to keep you warm inside your tent.

If you are lucky and there’s a period of sunshine in between the heavy rain, dry the wet clothes and shoes immediately in the sun so that you can wear them again if the weather decides to take a downturn.

Where to Setup a Tent When Camping in the Rain

Choosing the right campsite will determine how well you’ll be protected from the rain. Right of the bat, an established campsite is preferable which are generally open, flat areas so the chances of facing flash floods are slim to none. However, if you have to choose a wild spot, there are certain things you should consider before settling on one.

Stay away from spots that are hollow or fall under the lower level of the overall area. Ideally, slopes are great of pitching a tent while it’s raining because the water can easily flow away. Mountain areas are tricky when it comes to finding the right spot for your tent. Make sure that you don’t fix a spot on the lowest points of the mountain otherwise rainwater from the higher points might flash flood your tent.

Trees are great to act as a pivot for your tent. They also protect you from the rain to some extent. Of course, there will be droplets from the branches but the roof of your tent should protect you from that. Look out for dead trees or branches which might fall on your tent due to strong winds.
Once you find the right spot, you must clear out the area. Look for sharp objects that could tear your tent or be hazardous to you.

Things to do When Camping in the Rain

To take advantage of the rain, you can go swimming if you have a lake near your campsite. Unless it’s raining heavily, you can go for a walk or a short hike and take in the beautiful nature around you. Other fun activities include fishing, kayaking, or canoeing. While planning the camping trip, make sure to find a few spots for water activities around the camping area. This will not only kill time, but you’ll be able to enjoy yourself with your friends and family as well.

If it’s raining heavily, you have no choice but to be cooped up in your tent. But that doesn’t mean it has to be boring! Take out your cards, board games and your waterproof speaker to blast your favorite tunes. But that’s only possible if you do not forget to carry them.

In case of no entertaining items at hand, you can always play charades, or immerse yourself in a good old storytime session sharing life experiences. As long you’ve got a great company, you’re good to go even in the pouring rain.

List of Useful Waterproof Camping Gear

  1. Waterproof Tent
    • It’s advisable to bring a waterproof tent especially if you know for a fact that there’s a chance of rain. Any gear that is already waterproof is ideally a better option than making them waterproof. But in case you do not have a waterproof tent in your storage and you do not want to purchase one, you can apply Nikwax to it and your tent’s life will be doubled. Plus, the water-repellent spray also protects the tent from harsh UV rays.
  2. Sleeping Bags
    • Sleeping bags will protect you not only from the rain but also from dirt, and insects. An overnight stay requires a high-quality sleeping bag. Therefore, make sure you pack one for your camping trip.
  3. Pocket Blanket
    • Pocket blankets are great when you’re bound to be subjected to water or sand. These lightweight blankets usually have an outer layer that is water-resistant, sand-proof, and tear-resistant therefore, it will keep you dry in the outdoors when you’re camping in the rain as well as keep you protected from twigs, dirt, and insects. The regular size of these blankets usually fit two people easily.
  4. Dry Bags
    • Dry bags are mandatory when you’re camping in the rain. They will protect your dry clothes, electronics, and other gear from getting drenched. Large dry bags are preferable in comparison to several tiny ones. This is because the large ones are compartmentalized to fit all your essentials. You can also store mid-day refreshments in one of the sections of the bag.
  5. Dry Hand Towel
    • This is an obvious item to carry with you while camping in the rain. No matter how much you protect yourself from the rain, you’re bound to get wet as you get out of the tent to explore nature or wander around to find some survival tools. So if a regular-sized towel is too huge to carry, bring multiple hand towels in the dry bag.
  6. Flashlights, torches and Waterproof Match Container
    • Whether you’ve planned to camp out for a day or an overnight stay, light is essential especially when the weather leads to a dark and gloomy atmosphere. Carrying a lantern can be burdensome. Instead, bring along a waterproof match container, and you can easily find logs around your camp spot and light a fire to keep yourself warm. Plus, a torch is a must just in case the fire gets diminished.
  7. Shoes
    • Waterproof shoes are essential for camping in the rain. These shoes will protect you from the muddy ground especially if you decide to go on a hike or you need to find survival items in the woods. A great pair of waterproof shoes will be your ideal company!


Considering all the above, you must also be prepared to get wet and let the tools you own get drenched as well. It’s important to prepare for the worst even if you bring every necessary gear with you. As long as you choose the right spot and try your best to protect yourself from heavy rain, you should be able to have a fun camping trip!


  1. https://www.eurekacamping.com/blog/article/11-tips-wet-weather-camping-trips#:~:text=Keep%20your%20tent%20high%20and%20dry%20when%20camping%20in%20the%20rain.&text=Even%20if%20it’s%20only%20a,water%20is%20unlikely%20to%20collect.
  2. http://backpackingwithbacon.com/10-must-knows-camping-rainy-season/
  3. https://www.sunset.com/travel/outdoor-adventure/waterproof-camping-gear#matador-pocket-blanket
  4. https://www.outsideonline.com/1784991/what-gear-do-i-need-camp-rain#close
  5. https://awomanafoot.com/blog/camping-in-the-rain-how-to-camp-when-its-raining
  6. https://mybackyardlife.com/things-to-do-while-camping-in-the-rain/
  7. https://nordicwanders.com/blog/camping-in-rain-tips

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Daniel has experience camping across California in a variety of environments and parks. His interests in technology lead him to focus on writing about camping innovations.

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