SIX HASSLE-FREE WAYS TO SET UP CAMP
Camping tip #1: Make guy ropes visible at night
John and Julie Pezet from Murwillumbah, NSW, fit short lengths of yellow noodle — a child’s swimming pool flotation toy — to their guy ropes, improving their visibility at night. Noodles are readily available for about $3-5 each and one will provide enough guy rope guides for a whole awning.
Camping tip #2: Even better, make your guy ropes glow in the dark
Rob Vandervloet from Warragul (Vic) found these Supapeg glow-in-the-dark rope markers on the internet. They slide onto the rope and are charged by the sun during the day. They give up to eight hours of a glowing reminder of where your rope, peg spring and slider are to save those minor disasters as you return to your camper at night. They have to be better than tying on plastic bags, or similar attempts to warn the unwary. They are available in packs of four.
Camping tip #3: Make a personalised peg puller
Since he wasn’t happy with any of the standard issue peg pullers, Rob Vandervloat also designed his own from a very long tent peg. He ground a chisel-shaped end to the short original bend, so that it would go under pegs driven right to the ground, and bent the shank in a vice to form a hand-sized grip. He covered the hand section with an old length of hosepipe dipped in hot water to soften it.
Camping tip #4: Stop water pooling on a canvas awning
This bright idea comes from GIC Campers, NSW. To prevent the accumulation of water on a canvas awning, whether behind a spreader bar or simply on a surface that can’t cope with the level of run-off, a triangular section of heavy duty vinyl with hook and loop sewn along one side can be attached to the outer edge of the awning. To the opposing corner of that triangle attach a length of rope with a slide, as on an awning rope, which when tensioned pulls down the outer edge to a low point. This provides a water run-off point and prevents pooling.
Camping tip #5: Reinforce awning poles for storms and strong winds
Barry Worling from Glen Innes, NSW, fits two extra hose clamps to each awning pole so they stay in place in strong winds and storms. The clamp below the standard wing nut improves the clasp’s grip and the one above prevents the top half of the pole slipping into the lower section. The simple addition has kept their awning in place through some pretty fierce winds.
Camping tip #6: Attach a cord to the camper's zipper slider
A strong cord attached to your camper’s zipper slider will reduce the time it takes to fit the awning at camp — particularly if the tent peak is high. To use, simply connect the slider to the chain as you normally would and tug the cord as you walk across the front of the camper, raising your arm as you approach the peak.