A common challenge that a lot of campers face is packing their tent inside of their backpack successfully. There are a number of different factors to consider when packing your tent that can really make or break your camping trip.

If you do not pack your tent correctly it can cause you a lot of headache while you are camping. You increase the risk of puncturing your tent, and being extremely uncomfortable during your travel because of the weight of the tent on your back, especially if you are hiking long distances.


What kind of backpack you choose is going to be crucial, mainly because the size of your backpack determines how big of a tent you can fit inside of it and also how many other essential items you can fit into it, all while having the weight equally distributed.

Internal Frame

An Internal Frame backpack sits up against your back helping the weight inside of you backpack stay stationary, even as you move around. With this kind of backpack it is best to place your tent inside of the backpack itself. Since this backpack keeps your center of gravity almost to a natural position, the weight of the tent will not have much effect on your back and how mobile you are.

External Frame

An External Frame backpack sits further away from your back, which increase ventilation and causes you to sweat less. With this particular type of backpack you would want to strap your tent to the bottom because it’s easier to strap gear on the sturdy external frame, without having to bother with or re-arrange internal compartments inside of your backpack.


Tents come in all different shapes and sizes and some may be harder to pack than others. One of the best options would be to choose a backpacking tent, as these are the easiest to pack as that’s what they are specifically made for, but not everyone may have a backpacking tent and even if you have a larger tent you need to backpack with, you still have options.

Big Tents

If you are trying to pack a bigger tent into a backpack it may be best to use a stuff sack. This will greatly decrease the size of your tent enabling you to better place it either inside of your backpack (if you are using an Internal Frame) or outside of it (if you are using an External Frame)

Small Tents

Smaller tents are a lot easier to get into backpacks and they also weigh less. You would still want to place your tent on the bottom of your backpack as it will be one of the heaviest items you will carry. You can still use a stuff sack for a smaller tent to make it even smaller while packed.

Weight Distribution

This is a very important factor when it comes to camping or hiking as it plays a huge role in your comfortability. If you do not have proper weight distribution you may find yourself not being able to travel far, making frequent stops and dealing with some back pain.


Hiking requires a decent amount of energy, as it may involve climbing which means you are traveling on an uphill terrain. When hiking you will want to put your tent in the center of your backpack, so that weight can be close to your back and putting your tent in the backpack gives you more space on the outside for trekking poles or other items you may need.


Camping requires less travel than hiking and you will usually be accessing your tent faster. For this particular situation it is best to strap your tent to the bottom of your bag. This allows for easier access.


Organization is key when it comes to properly packing. If your gear is not properly stored you may find yourself pulling out a ton of other items just to get to a particular thing you need, which is a hassle. By executing organization, you will save yourself a headache.


When you pack items categorically, you would be placing items that are similar together. For example, if you set up your tent, you know that you are soon going to be using your sleeping bag as well, so you would pace these items close to one another.


When you place items in sequence it means that you are placing them in the order that they are used. An example of this would be, if you are camping and your routine is to make breakfast before anything else, the items you use to make breakfast (camping stove, etc…) would be placed towards the top of the backpack and what you use last will be placed towards the bottom.