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photo courtesy Michael Lawton, 7/30/2010. Photo was taken from: https://www.flickr.com/photos/mikethemountain/

In case you missed it, read about the first 5 uses in Part 1 HERE.

Let’s face it, no matter how good we are with our tent camping trip prep, from time to time we’ll forget something. Or, we find ourselves at the site, having traveled for a few hours to get there, and you start to bring out your gear and you find something that’s broken. It’s times like this that can try the patience of all of us. What do you do when you’re too far from a store to replace it, and you only have what you brought with you to deal with the issue? You improvise!

So you start rummaging through your gear to see what you have. Maybe some lengths of rope, an extra tent peg or two, a stray piece of newspaper. Aha! You were smart and packed in one of the best items to have in your gear stash: a ratchet strap. This post will shed light on some great uses for a ratchet strap. Now most of us have used ratchet straps to secure loads on our cars and trucks, and possible on a trailer as well. They work great for this, but have you ever thought about what other uses a ratchet strap has while you are tent camping? Well wonder no more! I’ll share 5 MORE of the coolest uses for a ratchet strap, so make sure before you head out for your next tent camping excursion, you pack at least one ratchet strap in your gear.

Ratchet Strap Use #6

The first use in this second part is to support a tarp to keep your campsite dry. In actual practice, you will probably need several ratchet straps for the tarp, at least 1 for each corner depending on how large your tarp is. Assuming you have trees or other stable items to secure one end of the ratchet strap to, you can simply hook a strap to each corner and then secure it around the tree. When you put up a tarp like this, be sure to slightly angle the tarp so that the water will run off and not pool on the tarp. If possible, have the water run off at the edge of your campsite such that it won’t come back into your site. The bigger your tarp, the more ratchet straps that you’ll want to use to keep it up. You can do this on a smaller scale right over your tent as well to help provide a dry area by your tent.

Ratchet Strap Use #7

A second use for a ratchet strap is to sling a load of wood and carry it back to your camp site. You may not have your vehicle with you when you are scavenging for wood, so how can you carry a lot of wood back to your site? First, you’ll gather the wood and then arrange it in a pile. You will then want to wrap the strap around the wood such that the 2 hooks on the ratchet strap hook together. You’ll need to then pull the loose end of the strap to take out the slack, and then you can ratchet the strap a few times to really pull all of the wood together. Now that you have it all secured, you still have the loose end of the strap, and this is what you will have over your shoulder. Be sure to grasp the loose end with both hands to have a good grip on the strap, and you’re set to hike back to your site with a lot more wood than you could carry with just your 2 hands.

photo courtesy Max Andrey. Photo was taken from: https://www.pexels.com/@maxandrey

Ratchet Strap Use #8

A third use for your ratchet strap is for securing a solar shower so that you can take a very refreshing shower. Now depending on how high the branch is and how long of a strap you have, you may want or need to use 2 ratchet straps. Basically, the long strap will be hooked to the solar shower, with the other end running through the ratchet to secure things. The strap will run over a tree branch high enough to allow gravity to work on the water in the solar shower. The other end of the strap will need to be secured to something solid, and this is where you may want a second ratchet strap. If the tree allows, you may be able hook the ratchet end to another branch. Alternatively, you could wrap a second strap around the tree and then hook the ratchet holding the solar shower to that. A third option, assuming it’s anchored well, could be to use a shepard’s hook to secure the ratchet holding the solar shower. As always, because of the infinite adjustments of the ratchet strap, you can easily adjust things for the height of the person, the height of the tree, etc.

Ratchet Strap Use #9

A fourth interesting use for a ratchet strap is as a lantern hanger. You can use a setup similar to hanging the solar shower above, or one of several other options for getting your lantern in a spot to provide light to the whole campsite. If you have any S-hooks or caribiners in your gear, you could string the ratchet strap between 2 trees and then hang the lantern from the strap by using the S-hook. This is nice because you can actually hang multiple lanterns from the strap to provide even more light. If you have hung a tarp using ratchet straps, use those S-hooks to hang lanterns from those straps already up. Even wrapping the ratchet strap around a tree, you can use an S-hook. The limits are only in your imagination.

photo courtesy Darren Kirby, 8/18/2018.
Taken at Lake Wissota State Park.

Lantern hung on ratchet strap

Ratchet Strap Use #10

The fifth fun use for a ratchet strap is to secure a wind wall. This is similar to hanging a tarp for protection from rain, except this is done vertically to help deflect wind. Doing this will also require several additional ratchet straps to properly secure the tarp to keep it from flapping and being blown away. This use works better with smaller tarps. Assuming you are securing the ratchet straps to the corners of the tarp, you’ll need to have 2 of them up high (as high as you want the wind wall to be) and 2 of them low. Hanging the tarp between trees is the most common method. This helps to block wind from your fire so you can keep it going, or to help make it easier to cook in a much less windy environment. It can even help to make things warmer in your tent by blocking a cold wind that would otherwise buffet your tent.

Wrap Up

So these are the next five interesting uses for a ratchet strap.  These straps are vital tools to have in your tent camping gear set, and you never know when one of them will become the “savior” of your trip.  Shop for ratchet straps with Amazon and Bass Pro Shops.

Got some feedback on this topic? I’d love to hear from you! Comment below, send me an email or share it on social media! Happy Tent Camping!

Featured Image photo courtesy Hans Braxmeier.  Photo was taken from: https://pixabay.com/en/users/Hans-2/

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