How to Rig a Tent Awning

How to Rig a Tent AwningCreating an awning for a tent can be important during drizzly, wet camping conditions. Most new tent designs have some type of awning incorporated into the front. Some do not have an awning and many that do are too shallow. A functional awning can be easily rigged, and it will create a dry oasis during the wettest of outings.


Difficulty: Moderate

How to:

Things You’ll Need:
  • Hammer
  • Tarp (with grommets)
  • Small diameter rope
  • Two adjustable tent poles with grommet tips
  • Adjustable tent pole
  • Tent stakes
  • Tarp clamps (optional)
  • Bright-colored plastic ribbon (optional)
Step 1
Spread the tarp over the top of the tent. The tarp should drape the front of the tent, covering the front half.
Step 2
Attach two tarp clamps to the tarp that will be tied to the two outside corners of the tent. Cut two lengths of rope and tie the clamps to the two back corner stakes of the tent.
Step 3
Pull tautly one of the front corners of the tarp. Use an adjustable tent pole with a grommet tip to slip onto the grommet on the corner of the tarp. Cut a length of rope and tie a loop in one end. Place the loop over the grommet tip of the tent pole. Run the rope to the ground at an angle, pulling against the tent pole. Repeat this on the opposite side.
Step 4
Pound a tent stake into the ground and tie off the rope from the tent pole. Bright-colored ribbon or flagging can be used to make the rope more visible and safer. Repeat Steps 3 and 4 on the other side. Trees and other stationary objects can be used, instead of tent poles, to tie off the front section of the tarp.
Step 5
Use center poles to create additional height at the center of the awning and tautly stretch any loose areas. This will also prevent pooling of water.

Tips & Warnings

An alternative to using tarp clamps is to place a small stone on the underside of the tarp and push it outward. Slightly twist the tarp and work the stone until a piece of thin rope or twine can be placed underneath it. Wrap the twine or rope several times around the bottom side of the stone and tie it off, leaving enough to tie a loop in the other end.

Article Written By Eric Duncan

Eric Duncan is a military veteran and a professional in the safety, travel and aviation industries. Duncan has been writing since 2002 for magazines, newspapers, local business literature and on such websites as He has earned his Bachelor of Science in professional aeronautics and his Master of Business Administration.

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