You are here

Katherine Donnelly | 10.17.2017

We all go to the outdoors seeking different things, but above all else, every camping experience should be fun. The Tent Commandments is here with a cheeky take on outdoor life in an effort to keep Mother Nature laughing and campers smiling.

1. Thou shalt have a room with a view

Whether it's mountains, trees, lakes, or you'd like to sea the ocean, your tent should always have a view worth waking up to. Consider your surroundings and always place the door of your tent toward the most alluring part of your campsite. 

Starting top left and moving clockwise: View Caper, CA (Joe and Kathrina Merrill), Separate Star Point, CA (Kathryn Stevens), Glacier Mountain Camp, CO (Megan Kantor), The Landing, WA (Evan Kubena).

2. Thou shalt be con-tent with your supplies

Camp dwellings come in all shapes and sizes and serve all in-tents and purposes. Make sure you are prepared for your particular outdoor experience. There are great tents out there for any budget and function, but make sure you are familiar with your equipment and set up camp before drinks start flowing. Setting up tipsy is whiskey business. Also, take care of your equipment and store it dry and in its original packaging. (P.S. a first-aid kit never hurts.)

Katie Cooney

3. Thou shalt focus on what is important and capture the good times

What fun is finding a gem of a campsite if you can't share your photos with your friends? Be sure to take your camera of choice and take lots of pictures. Open your aperture a bit and get creative. Expose yourself to something new! You'll be glad you did. What if a unicorn came to your campfire and you had no way to prove it?! 

Clockwise: Tiptoe through the Garden, NC (Cole Sweeny), Secluded River Spot on a Farm, CA (Allie Foraker), S.S. Yurt 19' Glamping, NC (Cole Sweeny), Solitary Glamping Near Zion, UT (Lexi Smith)

4. Thou shalt leave it better than you found it

It's like MC Hammer says, "You compost this." Or at least that's how we think it goes. Make sure you pack out your trash, don't disturb the landscape, and whatever you do DON'T FEED THE BEARS. You're cooking isn't that good, and they are notorious for leaving negative Yelp reviews.

5. Thou shalt keep an active Napchat account

Let's face it. You can't spell camping without N-A-P. Take a little time for yourself, throw up the hammock or blanket, and get your midday snooze on. Recharge from that hike or the whiskey at last night's campfire. Nobody's around to judge you.

From top-bottom, left-right, The Cove, NY (Meredith Moyer Brontager), Organic Farm Camp, OR (Evan Kubena), Swim the Beautiful Ivy River, NC (Erin McGrady), Caravan Outpost, CA (Kikki Eilersten), Prairie View Camp, WI (Brittany Step), Andzen Acres: RV & Tent Camping, NE (Ashley Tiedgen)

6. Thou shalt keep a paws-itive attitude

It can be ruff leaving your best paw-l at home, so why not bring them to the outdoors with you! It’s a scientific fact that dogs love the freedom of the outdoor lifestyle, and they can provide you with much needed warmth in the event you went with the budget sleeping bag! Win-Win! Just make sure you check the dog policies of campsites and trails before you go so poor Baxter will not be left out. Don’t stop retrievin’!

From top-bottom, left-right: Hatch Camp and Art Farm, GA (William Reed Olds Benton), Midcoast Way Station, ME (Vital Wilsh), High Pasture Campsite, MO (Andrea Watson), Dockley Ranch, MO (Michelle Park)

7. Thou shalt live every moment in the present tents

Camping is all about relaxing, reconnecting or, like most of us, drinking too much and passing out in a hammock. Whatever it is you are after, make sure you take each moment as it comes and appreciate the good things in life.

8. Thou shalt tree-t yo self!

I’m trying to list all the reasons that you should seek a camp in the forest, but I’m stumped! It goes without saying that camping and the woods go hand in hand, so do yourself a favor and park your junk near a trunk! May the forest be with you!

Clockwise: Locally Crafted Yurt, NH (Will Barrett), Forests, Fields and Creeks Oh My!, WA (Erinn Hale), Forest Tent Camping, CA (Lisse Lundin), The Birdie Treehouse, ME (Erin Wheat), Lupine Wood and Meadows, NC (Erin McGrady), Decar Hollow (Haley Thelen)

9. Thou shalt be shore of yourself

Waterfront camping can provide some of the most waterful views and most memorable campsites you will find. If it's relaxation you're looking for, look for a site near some H2O. And despite the great advice of TLC, we recommend that you do go chasing waterfalls only if it is safe to fo so. Always be sure to respect the landscape and camp at least 200 feet from the fresh water source to avoid contamination. 

Clockwise: Lakeside Camp, SC (Justin Cummings), Quercus Cabin, CA (Lisse Lundin), Secluded River Spot on a Farm, CA (Allie Foraker), Sweeny Bluff Cabin, TN (Deziree Dufresne)

10. Thou shalt keep it lit, fam!

Half of the reason we go camping is for the fire, so be prepared before you go. Have matches, marshmallows, and Hershey's bars ready at all times. Wood gathering and fires are not permitted at all public sites, so be sure to prep ahead of time. Start small, be patient, and keep building. When in doubt, a healthy dose of lighter fluid does the trick. And always remember, what happens around the campfire, stays around the campsite. 

Clockwise: Adirondack Glamping, NY (Chantilly W), Tree House Tent, UT (Katie Cooney), Klepht Hideout, NY (Ezekial Gonzalez), Olympic Wilderness Camp, WA (Megan Paulsen)


Thou shalt camp more and worry less!

The Tent Commandments gives praise to all things tent and provides a humorous take on outdoor life. Follow them on Facebook or Instagram for more great tentspiration and top quality con-tent!


Please consider editing the last part to include a note about fire danger and responsible use of fire in established rings, and extinguishing them before leaving (and maybe don't encourage use of lighter fluid).
As wildfire seasons get progressively worse, you should really encourage the use of stoves over campfires, or at least mention the fact that fires should only be built at developed sites in established fire rings.
This is some of the most cringeworthy material I've ever read
Have updates, photos, alerts, or just want to leave a comment?
Sign In and share them.