PaddleWise Discussion on Beach Camping

Date: Mon, 28 Dec 1998 09:17:15 -0500
From: "Sisler, Clyde" 
Subject: [Paddlewise] Beach Camping

The only beach camping I've ever done is under a beach umbrella with a 6
pack so I hope someone can help me.

If you've got nothing but sand and nothing to tie your tent to, what's the
preferred way of securing your tent against high winds?

Campmor offers tent stakes called 'Sand Hogs', a 12" heavy steel stake.

I had been thinking about fashioning some sort of cloth buckets I could fill
with sand and bury.  Then I saw in Kabloona that Victoria Jason had attached
some sort of skirt around her tent that, I guess, she covered with sand to
keep it tied down and to prevent wind from getting underneath the tent.

Any thoughts?

Date: Mon, 28 Dec 1998 09:59:43 -0600 From: "R. Walker" Subject: Re: [Paddlewise] Beach Camping Personally, I use a bivy sack instead of a big tent. But with a tent, you could use any long metal rod, probably would need to be at least 24" long, and personally, I'd just as soon carry a set of 36" long rods, probably aluminum or brass. Buy at a hardware store, hammer a hook into one end, and be sure to bring a mallet for setting the stake. Also, any weight inside the tent around the edges will help considerably. Richard Walker Houston, TX
Date: Mon, 28 Dec 1998 09:01:45 -0600 From: Whiterabbit Subject: Re: [Paddlewise] Beach Camping IF there is ample driftwood where you are at, you can use that as an anchor. Attach about 6 - 8' lines on your tent's tie out locations. Find pieces of driftwood at least 2 inches in diameter and 2 feet long. Tie the lines around the driftwood and bury them. Do at least two on the upwind side and one on the downwind side. If your tent doesn't have locations to attach tie-outs, it is probably not suitable for camping in high winds. For true leave-no-trace, dig up the driftwood when you break camp and remove your lines. This approach is good for up to about 20 mile per hour winds. Don't know if they work in higher winds, because if the forecast is for that high, I stay home. In sandy location there is a trade off on campsites. Being in a sheltered location on the lee of the island gives you some protection from the wind, but unless there is substantial vegetation, at the expense of sand in everything. Being on the windward side means less blowing sand, but the full effect of the wind. Mounding sand onto the bottom of your tent helps, but usually isn't necessary.
Date: Mon, 28 Dec 1998 08:46:43 -0800 From: Dave Kruger Subject: Re: [Paddlewise] Beach Camping Richard's idea is a cheap and practical one. If you have any metalworking skills, you might take a look at a "snow fluke," a device climbers use to anchor in soft snow, and fabricate half a dozen replicas with centrally-located holes to anchor tie-off ropes to. Note the fluke must maintain the correct "attitude" in the sand, or pulling on it will extract it from the sand. The commercial versions I have seen (and owned, long ago) had a cable lashup which kept the correct angle. - -- Dave Kruger Astoria, OR
Date: Mon, 28 Dec 1998 09:26:24 -0800 From: Bob Tellefson Subject: Re: [Paddlewise] Beach Camping The Sand Hogs are excellent but heavy. I carry 6 of them for securing my tent or lean-to/sunscreen on sandy beaches. A few months back they were well tested when I landed on a sandy beach, chased in by gale force winds. I staked my tent in dry sand and slept through the noise of 50 knt gusts only to be awakened by the silence of the wind dying early the next morning. It was well worth the extra weight. Before the Sand Hogs, I would often use plastic handled shopping bags like those used in grocery stores. They are easy to carry, have amazing tensile strength and are great for hauling out the trash or dirty laundry. A half dozen of these fit in the palm of your hand. I often wonder how the world got by without them. Bob Tellefson Santa Barbara Kayak Assocation 805-683-9717
Date: Mon, 28 Dec 1998 10:42:48 -0700 From: Philip Wylie Subject: Re: [Paddlewise] Beach Camping > Purchase 'Snow Pegs', I have found them successful in sand and in very > high winds. However, damming the foundation floor of your tent is still > a wise idea: > a.) for the sake of keeping wind from lifting under the floor > b.) for water run off from the perimeter area of one's tent. > > One should still be wise in their selected choice of a camping area. > Constructing a modest windbreak from drift wood is a nice thing to do > especially if you are trying to cook in high winds. > > Snow pegs are made of 1/8" aluminum tapered and perforated with lightening > holes and bent longitudinally in a half circle for added strength and > grip in the sand or snow. They are great for hiking because of the reduced > weight and should be available at Mountain Equipment Co- Op or Totem > Outfitters. There is a great stocking stuffer you missed this Xmas. If you are interested in valuable camping & survival tips I encourage allto check out the following URL which contains Dr. Andre-Francios Bourbeau Primitive Skills-Group. The archieves are worth exploring. Best Regards & Happy New Year, Philip Wylie

Date: Mon, 28 Dec 1998 09:44:43 -0800 (PST) From: Barbara Kossy Subject: Re: [Paddlewise] Beach Camping More than once I've tied my tent to my kayak on windy sandy beaches. Barbara * -- * -- * -- * -- * -- * -- * -- * --*--*--*-- Sea Kayak Italia - Elba, Italy tel. 650-728-8720 fax 650-728-8753 * -- * -- * -- * -- * -- * -- * -- * -- *--* --*--
Date: Mon, 28 Dec 1998 15:18:08 +0000 From: "BRADFORD R. CRAIN" Subject: [Paddlewise] beach camping Here are some techniques that have worked well in the past, but were never tested in a severe storm (which is probably why they worked): Have a 4-season tent, with strong poles and aerodynamic design. Stake the tent down with large sticks; pound them into the sand with rocks. Don't use those little metal stakes that come with the tent (ignore your friends who accuse you of over-kill). Try to tie your tent to logs or rocks for additional anchoring. This requires bringing lots of nylon line or small diameter rope. Stash your kayak in the woods if possible, and tie it down. Kayaks love to blow around. You might need it later. Sleep with your head toward the surf. That way your head gets wet before your entire sleeping bag does. You may also wake up from the sound of water lapping by your ears before your tent gets flooded. Try to camp behind a windblock if possible. Let your friends camp between you and the surfline. Brad ********************************************************************** Bradford R. Crain Dept. of Mathematics Phone: (503) 725-3127 Portland State Univ. FAX: (503) 725-3661 P.O. Box 751 Portland, Or. 97207 **********************************************************************
Date: Mon, 28 Dec 1998 19:14:37 -0500 From: Gabriel L Romeu Subject: Re: [Paddlewise] Beach Camping A simple, light and easy to store solution are frisbees with small holes in the center, fender washers and some extra line- these may be buried and provid a reasonable anchor. Of course have an extra one, preferably a glow in the dark for evening play. You can also bury ballast rocks... - -- gabriel l romeu studio furniture paintings, photos, prints, etc. a daily photo journal
Date: Mon, 28 Dec 1998 19:44:44 +0000 From: Michael Neverdosky Subject: Re: [Paddlewise] Beach Camping Remember to tie up your kayak. How many stories have we heard of people waking up and finding their kayak gone? As Sinbad would say, "Trust in Allah, but tie your kayak." (sic) If you are going to the ends of the Earth, you might also want to take a pair of earplugs. After a day or two of listening to a screaming wind a break can be very nice. :-)) michael
Date: Mon, 28 Dec 1998 21:00:51 EST From: Barbdoerr Subject: Re: [Paddlewise] Re: Beach Camping Be sure to get far enough back from the high tide line.................
Date: Mon, 28 Dec 1998 22:43:42 -0500 (EST) From: Paul Hollerbach Subject: Re: [Paddlewise] Beach camping A few season's ago there was a "Trailside" episode with Bardy Jones where he & the host were in folders sailing in the Bahamas. John showed a slice cut from a polyethylene paint or spackling compound bucket which had teeth on one edge and a hole drilled in for the line. He first used it as a trowel to dig a small hole in the sand, then buried it with the teeth up and at a diagonal. Seemed like a cleverly simple sand stake, cheap and effective. ~PH
Date: Mon, 28 Dec 1998 22:42:54 EST From: Tomckayak Subject: Re: [Paddlewise] Beach Camping In a message dated 12/28/98 10:03:55 AM Pacific Standard Time, bkossy@ writes: << More than once I've tied my tent to my kayak on windy sandy beaches. Barbara >> This does not work well if kayak is empty. Sorry if I am stating the obvious.
Date: Mon, 28 Dec 1998 23:00:57 EST From: WildConect Subject: [Paddlewise] beach camping Couple of things I learned from my coast of Georgia trip last spring-- 1. A tarp to spread out on the ground helps to control the sand (sand management). We would spread out a tarp and unload the gear from our kayaks on to it at days end. Great way to organize for camp. We would also put our gear on a tarp in the morning to sort and load into our boats. Used the same tarp to cook on too. Really worked well to keep the sand where it belongs and not in our food. 2. A large mesh bag to load all those little dry sacks into was invaluable, especially when arriving at low tide and having quite a haul beyond high tide mark. 3. Sand tent camping--all the previous suggestions are good. I've also used aluminium pie pans and buried them in snow--same with sand. Drilled two holes in center of pan, threaded a piece of 4 mm (3 mm will work too) cord through--long enough so it is above ground--then tied my guy line to it. In snow and sand, I always go over kill on guying out my tent. That is, if there is a guy line attachment, I use it. Have Fun! John Browning Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Date: Mon, 28 Dec 1998 22:46:54 EST From: Johnlebl Subject: Re: [Paddlewise] Beach Camping Tying up one's boat is so fundamental that we sometimes take it that all know this. A grounded boat is NOT tied! This reminds me of a duck hunting trip one day. When my two hunting buddies and I returned to where our 16 foot flat bottomed boat was pulled up on the salt grass AND anchored, another hunter was there waiting. As we approached, he asked if I could take him to get his boat. Thinking he had walked quite a ways from it hunting (salt marsh grass makes easy walking with teh lay, but tough against it) I said sure, where is it? He pointed across the lake about a mile across and said over there I think the wind blew it away. I inwardly laughed to myself and agreed to take him while my partners waited. There was not enough room for all four of us in teh boat. As I got ready to relaunch my boat, I went to retreive the anchor about 30 feet into teh grass. He asked me "what is that for?" I told him "to keep MY boat from floating away!" Duhhhhhhhh! Some people never learn. Always TIE your boat. If you ever canoe or raft teh lower canyons of the Rio Grande between Texas adn Mexico, at night tie your boats with at least 60 feet of rope adn tie it to a rock UP the canyon wall. A thunderstorm hundreds of miles away can dmp enough water to run down the side canyons from a hundred miles away. You will never know it, but during the night you will awaken with just enough time to grab sleeping bag and haul ass up the rocks of the canyon wall to save your own sleepy but now wide awake butt. Never mind enough time to retrieve canoes up there also. They will survive at the end of their tether. Tie your boat and tie it well. Good is not enough. John LeBlanc
Date: Mon, 28 Dec 1998 21:41:25 -0700 From: Philip Wylie Subject: Re: [Paddlewise] Beach Camping Moreover, be sure not to camp to close to the shoreline where possible. How many tents have I seen washed away because they had to be abandoned in an emergency. One, plus three near floodings or washaways from having camped too close without consideration of the tide line and moon phase. I saw one tent washed up into a surge channel still intact with all the poles and remnants inside..which tent discovery was over a year old. Somebody goofed. Howling winds off the pacific on Vancouver Island is reason enough for the vast ship graveyard that lays off her shores. I like Sinbad for his saying but to camp too close to the shore line is to sin bad. Cheers, Philip
Date: Fri, 1 Jan 1999 21:26:17 -0600 From: "Larry and Janell Koenig" Subject: [Paddlewise] beach camping When it is necessary to stake out in the sand a line that will be under a lot of tension such as one holding up a fly, I usually use a deadman - a stake turned sideways and buried about 16" with the line running through a hole drilled in the middle of an aluminum stake that is itself "T" shaped in crossection. I've tried wide sand hog type stakes and found them to be quite heavy and less secure against pulling out. Lighter "sand stakes" are made and work well for just staking out a tent. Being able to keep sand out of the tent and cooking area has become pretty easy with the use of a designated tarp to unload gear onto just at the entrance to the tent. That tarp with its corners weighted down then becomes a sand free area for cooking etc. At the front of the tent ( or side of the tarp) goes a collapsible fabric "washbasin" half full of water to dip feet into before entering the tent or treading on the sand free sanctum. Folks I've paddled with have extended the sand free concept to include walkways between tents or to a boat. It makes for an easy effective way to keep grit out of gear. When cooking it is sometimes useful to have one person designated as "clean" and another as the sandy "gopher" to facilitate the fetching of things to the cooking area. I have been accused of being anal re. my avoidance of sand but: It's good to keep your cockpit covered to keep out blown sand.(But be sure to leave no foodlike stuff in the cockpit lest small rodents eat through your cokpit cover to get at it.) It is good to wipe out the inside of your cockpit with a damp sponge before paddling to get out any stray grains that might abrade your knees, thihgs, lower back ... It is useful to have a freestanding tent that can be "shook out " when breaking camp to rid it of sand before packing up. It is useful to get back in the dunes if possible to avoid auditory and tactile overload from the wind. Let there be no hint of sand in the ferrule area of a break down paddle when it's assembled - a wash of the connecting surfaces in the water before assembly suffices. Larry Koenig