Jump to content

What is you worst experience sleeping in a tent???

Recommended Posts

I love this thread. The very best stories from all our adventures come from the disasters - of course!


As a Scout in the '70's I remember a great trip where the Navy took us on those beach-landing craft across the Chesapeake Bay to a beach at Kiptopeke on the Eastern Shore. It just so happened that a hurricane was on its way, and where we were was not really the best place to be in those conditions. All the tents, both adults and youth, except one, had been flattened by the winds, and I think there was at least a patrol of us all in that one 2-person pup tent. There were boys sitting on the beach under their ponchos. This was the only campout in my entire Scouting experience as a youth that was called for the weather - every other month for those years I camped.


When my now 18yo daughter was just 2yo, with her mother, we were camping all around the country. Near Carlsbad NM we were hearing reports of severe thunder storms and tornados. We pulled into a State or National Park campground somewhere there early so we could make sure to get set up before lots of rain. I staked everything out really well, blew up the air beds(we use those for car camping), and pretty much had everything set before the rain started. We ended up having a light dinner in the tent, since it was still early, and we had planned some games. But then the water started to rise, 1", then 2", then 4", then 6" or more. Apparently we had managed to set up in a flash flood zone. So technically, that wasn't a night in a tent, but a night in the front seat of an old Isuzu Trooper.


I've got lots more disaster stories, but I survived them all, and they tend to make for the best and most funny stories - so I wouldn't trade them in for something boring!!

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Replies 34
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Non-scouting ... a long time ago. I was about 5 or 6. Big canvas family tent of the 70's. I wouldn't call it the worst experience, but probably the most memorable.


My parents slept on the floor of the tent. Me, my sister and brother all had cots. I was closest to the door, my sister in the middle, and my brother against the back wall. I was awakened by my dad reaching in from outside the door telling me not to move or make any noise. He then pointed to under my brother's cot where our groceries were still in their bags, where I saw the black and white tail. (My mom was outside on the picnic table.)


I slowly propped myself on my elbow and watched. During the movement and the noise of peanut shells crunching, my sister (about 4) woke up and began screaming. My dad had to reach into the tent and pull her out. In the process, he ended up tipping over her cot. So my dad had to pull me out, fearing what was coming next. My brother (about 2) was still asleep with our visitor munching below his cot.


Being a large tent, my dad really didn't want to go back in if he could avoid it to pull out my still sleeping brother. We were sitting on the picnic table waiting for the ranger to arrive, when the visitor came out the door, went around the side of the tent and took off for parts unknown.


Thankfully there were no lingering affects as our visitor wasn't frightened in the tent, but had apparently cut its nose on a peanut shell which is what caused him to vacate. After that, my mom started leaving the food in the car.




Link to post
Share on other sites

Troop camping trip at Assateague Island, Maryland. We were camped in a little spot fairly close to the water, with just a thin line of dunes in between. There were three of us in the extra-large tent, all older Scouts, and our tent was pretty much chaos by Saturday night. Clothes, shoes, gear strewn everywhere. We figured we'd just take some extra time Sunday morning and pack everything up, no biggie.


Come Sunday morning, we were woken up early by an ASM yelling to us to get the bleep out of the bleeping bleep tent. A storm had come up and the winds were blowing so hard that the ASM had to stand on the edge of the bleeping tent while the three of us were scurrying around inside trying to pack our bleeping junk away.


After sheepishly getting everything stowed and our tent packed away, we watched in silent awe as a still-standing tent from the Girl Scout troop across the road was picked up by the wind and tossed over the dunes like a baseball. The leader of that troop let out some very loud bleeps at that.


Worst actual sleeping experience in a tent? Any humid summer night with no airflow, too many to count.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Worst... on a backpack trip...

Rudely woken up in the middle of the night and having a wet scout thrust on us. It seems the scout didn't set up his tent properly so it collapsed when it POURED that night. He got soaked. To stop his chills, he was told to take off his wet shirt (thank goodness the shorts were dry says this lady leader.. WHEW) and use my sleeping bag.


sleeping positions.. I can't be next to the scout so that puts my son in the middle. Sharing a sleeping bag not meant to be shared is a REAL toughie. Especially when my son NEVER woke up during this whole change. Thank goodness morning came quickly along with warmth... * reminiscing smile


To do list...

Get a BACKPACKING tent so no one get thrust on us because we have the biggest tent... *laughing


Would I go backpacking again??... YEP



Link to post
Share on other sites

Cub scout camping. Trying to erect our 9 man mammoth tent (well it was such a deal) with my Bear and Wolf in a 35mph gusting wind. Even with the minivan as a wind block. I was swearing up a storm but no one heard me as the winds just whipped my voice away. That night the front came through and 2 out of 3 families bugged out. Some slept in cars. We stayed in the tent and it the ground was so wet it condensed on all our gear. The bags were cold, etc.


The tent across from me had set up in a low spot and sure enough had 4" of water in the morning.


That morning we huddled on the ice chest under the rain fly eating cold MRE's. My boys thought it was great!

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Create New...