How To Attach Tent to Backpack? – Proven & Tested Methods

For anyone who enjoys camping, attaching your tent to your backpack is an absolute game-changer.

If you choose to go camping on campsites where you can set up your tent close to your car, this is less important.

But if you prefer to be more at one with nature, then your backpack is your best friend for the trip. 

How To Attach Tent to Backpack

Camping backpacks come in a variety of sizes, but whatever size you get it, it will always be bigger than you expect.

The amount of things that you can fit into these backpacks is so surprising, but there is one thing that you will often struggle to fit into your backpack, and that is your tent. 

But that doesn’t mean that you have to carry your tent in your hands. Just because the tent can’t fit inside your backpack, doesn’t mean that you won’t be able to use the backpack to carry your tent.

Most camping backpacks come with the ability to attach additional belongings to the outside of the bag, and you can use this ability to attach your tent.

So if you want to find out how to safely and securely attach your tent to your backpack, then keep on reading

Prepare the Tent

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Before you even attempt to connect your tent to your backpack, you will have to prepare your tent for its journey on the outside of your bag.

While the contents of the inside of your backpack will be protected from adverse weather, the things that are attached to the outside will not be, which is why you must prepare it. 

The first thing that you need to do is lay out your tent flat on the ground, and pack the tent’s poles and pegs into a small bag. Once the small bag is filled, you should add this to the side of your tent.

Starting at the side of the tent where you have placed the bag of pegs, you can then begin to roll the tent, ensuring that all the lines remain square while you roll. The bag of poles and pegs will act as a support for the tent and allow you to roll it easier. 

Once you have rolled the tent, you should then add the rolled-up tent into the tent bag. You should only do this if your tent is dry as storing a wet tent is heavy and damage could occur to your tent if it is trapped in the bag with the water.

As you will probably know, the tent that holds the bag is usually showerproof, however, this is not enough if you get caught in heavy rain.

So once you have added the tent into the tent bag, you should then add the tent bag into an additional waterproof bag and secure it tightly. This bag will be extra protection for your tent and ensure that it won’t get wet during your journey to the campsite.

The last thing you want is to be putting up a wet tent to spend the night in. 

Attach the Tent

Once the tent has been prepared ready to be connected, it is then time to attach the tent. There are a few different ways that you can attach your tent to your backpack, so let’s take a look at what these methods are. 

The first way that you can attach the tent is through the backpack’s compression straps. Most camping backpacks come with compression straps on either side of the tent which also has buckles that allow you to tighten or loosen the compression straps.

These compression straps are excellent as they take the weight of the tent and pull it close to the muscles in your stomach to provide more stability to the backpack. This is easy to do, but please note that you must balance out the weight, so if you attach your tent to the compression straps on one side, you must connect something on the other side too. 

Alternatively, you could attach the bag containing your tent through the closed-loop ties on your backpack. Most camping backpacks also come with loops on the front of the backpack to allow you to tie items on.

This is an easy place to connect your tent as all you need to do is pull the bag containing your tent through the loops on the front of the backpack.

These loops naturally pull tight and so they should be able to securely hold your tent in place. However, if you find that this is not the case you can also clip your tent to these loops for added security. 

Finally, you could use an external frame backpack to attach your tent. External frames attach to the outside of the backpack and are a go-to for people who regularly have to hold heavy loads in their backpack.

While these frames do not reduce the amount of weight that you are carrying, they do ensure that the weight of the backpack is evenly distributed which makes it easier for you to carry it.

As well as being great for this, these frames are also easy to attach things to as they often come with tie points. So if you are thinking of using one of these frames to attach your tent, all you need to do is tie the bag on and you’re good to go. 


The idea of connecting your tent to the outside of your backpack can be daunting if you haven’t done it before, but it is perfectly safe.

All of the methods that we have looked at for connecting your tent come with safety measures in place to ensure that your tent will not fall off of your backpack and that carrying the weight will not do any damage to you. 

Some people worry that their tent will become ripped using this method, and while there is always the risk of this, it is extremely limited due to the multiple bags in which you are storing the tent.

So if you do not have room inside of your backpack for your tent, connecting it to the exterior is a perfectly safe way to transport your tent.

Andrew Mullen

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