If you have read the title of this article and are thinking, “why would anyone want to sleep without a tent?” then just give me a chance to explain first. It is very tough to imagine going camping without a tent. But tents are large, heavy, require a lot of space, and can take a long time to set up. Also, if you are sleeping in a tent, you are limiting your view of the great outdoors and missing out on sleeping under the stars. So, if you are feeling adventurous and want to try something new, then sleeping outdoors without a tent may just be what you need to spice things up.
However, just because the idea of camping without a tent might sound enticing, you should not rush into it without any prior knowledge. And that is the purpose of this article, as we will be covering some of the basic things that you will need to know before setting up your bed in the great wilderness. So, without further delay, let’s look at how you can sleep outside without a tent.
Is It Safe To Sleep Outside Without A Tent?
This is by far the most common question people have when preparing to sleep outdoors without any protection. The answer is yes, it is safe to sleep outside without a tent. But you need to take some precautions and keep a few things in mind.
- The first thing that you will need to consider is how to stay off the ground. Sleeping directly on top of the forest floor is not only uncomfortable but can also make you sick as it can get very cold. And let’s not forget the number of bugs and insects that can bite you if you sleep without any protection. So, the best thing to do is to use a mat or a hammock.
- You will also need a high-quality sleeping bag if you decide to sleep without a tent. Choose one that can endure being used on rough, uneven terrain. It is also important that your sleeping bag has plenty of padding as it will give you adequate comfort and warmth for a good night’s sleep.
- Don’t eat and sleep in the same spot. Animals have an excellent sense of smell and can detect food and leftovers from miles away. So, when having your meal, make sure that you properly clean your plates and utensils after you are done. And if you do have extra food, then securely store it in a bag and pitch it onto a tree where wild animals won’t be able to reach it.
Ways To Sleep Outside Without A Tent
Here are some of the best ways to sleep outside without a tent:
- Hammocks: Hammocks are very useful when you are outside without a tent. They keep you well elevated, and you don’t have to worry about sleeping on cold, uneven, rocky ground. It also keeps you safe from insects and small animals. They are lightweight and easy to carry. But there are a few disadvantages as well. For instance, it can be tough to find a pair of trees that have an adequate amount of space between them for you to set up your hammock. Also, you will still need to use an additional sleeping bag as hammocks do not provide sufficient protection against the cold.
- Bivy sacks: Bivy sacks are a great alternative to tents as they are lightweight and waterproof. They look like narrow, elongated tents which are suitable for a single person. The best thing about bivy sacks is not only are they easy to set up and take down, but they are also very effective against rain and other weather conditions. The downside of using bivy sacks is that they can be tough to move inside. They don’t have much room and can only be used to sleep in it. That means they are a nightmare for people with claustrophobia.
- Camping tarps: If bivy sacks don’t seem suitable for you, then you can try using camping tarps instead. Bivy sacks and camping tarps share a lot of similar features and utilities. They are both very lightweight and compact. But the advantage of using a camping tarp is that they are very roomy and provide you with a lot of space to move around in. Additionally, you can set them up using many different methods, which makes them very versatile. However, the drawbacks are they aren’t very weatherproof, and using them requires you to sleep on bare ground.
- Crafting your shelter: Like our ancestors, you can also try crafting your own shelter using wood, branches, vines, leaves, etc. These shelters are easy to build and do not require you to carry any additional camping gear with you. And like camping tarps, you get a lot of versatility when setting up your campsite as you can use almost anything around you to make your shelter. However, the biggest problem with making your own shelter is that you will be exposed to bugs and other small critters. Additionally, you also need a certain level of expertise and experience in making DIY shelters out in the woods. So, if you are not very familiar with how to make your own shelter, then we do not advise you to use this method.
Tips To Sleep Well Outdoors
Now that we have covered some of the basics of how to sleep outside without a tent, here are a few general tips to enhance your experience.
- Whichever method you choose to go with when sleeping outdoors, you must bring a sleeping pad, a sleeping bag, and weather-appropriate clothes with you.
- Bring a pillow, but more specifically bring a camping pillow.
- Exercise and stay active throughout the day. This will help you to have a refreshing sleep at night. However, do not exercise right before you sleep as it may end up keeping you awake.
- Stay hydrated! The recommended amount of water intake for men is 3.7 liters and for women is 2.7 liters. Keep in mind that this amount will increase depending on your activity level and outdoor temperature.
- Similar to staying hydrated, you should also eat well. Maintaining a healthy diet is essential if you plan to camp outdoors for a prolonged period of time. Make sure your meals are light, compact, nutritious, healthy, and provide enough calories for the day.
- If you are eating and drinking properly, then don’t forget to relieve yourself when nature calls. A good rule to follow is not to drink any liquids two hours before your bedtime. Otherwise, you will have to keep making trips to the bathroom.
- Sleep on top of a flat surface that can accommodate your entire body. You can bring along a leveling tool with you to flatten the surface you will be sleeping on top of. If you have any doubts about whether the ground is flat or not, then try laying down on it and checking for yourself.
Challenges Of Sleeping Outside Without A Tent
Sleeping outside without a tent can be a great experience. But it comes with a few challenges as well. Such as:
- As you will be sleeping without a tent, keeping yourself warm will be much more challenging. Tents can provide excellent warmth, especially in cold climates. You won’t find the same level of warmth using other means.
- It can also be quite challenging to keep yourself dry without a tent. Luckily, camping tarps and bivy sacks can provide a decent amount of waterproofing. But they also have their own set of disadvantages which have already been discussed.
- Finally, sleeping on the ground will always have a risk of wild animals and insects joining you at the night.
If you are new to camping, then it is not advisable to sleep without a tent. On the other hand, if you have plenty of experience in camping and have the technical knowledge of surviving in the woods, you can try spending a night under the sky. We have only provided you with some of the basic ideas you need to set yourself up for the night. YouBut overall, for adventurous campers, this is an experience that they must have at least once in their life.
William Arrovo seeks thrills and laughter in everything he comes across. He is a fun loving person with a zest of exploring the breathtaking places around the globe. He feels content in sharing his experiences of travelling to various countries. He is grateful about enriching himself with a myriad of cultures and rejuvenating his soul while staying outdoors.