Common menu bar links

The Basics - What to Bring

Tent glossary

Tent pad: A tent pad is a predetermined area of grass, soil or sand on a campsite where you set up your tent. These areas are chosen as they are flat and free of obstructions and make for an ideal area to place your tent.

Tent body: The tent body is the portion of the tent inside which you actually sleep including the floor. It is usually made up of nylon or polyester and may have mesh for ventilation.

Tent fly: The tent fly is the water resistant or waterproof material that fits over the tent body to protect you from the elements such as wind, rain and the sun.

Groundsheet: A groundsheet is a piece of fabric like the tent floor which acts as a barrier between the tent floor and the ground. Although not an essential part of the tent, a groundsheet can protect your tent floor over time. Some tents include a groundsheet or it can be purchased separately. Groundsheets may also be referred to as “footprints”.

Guy lines Guy lines
© Parks Canada / S. Burroughs

Guy lines: A guy line is a cord rope used to help secure your tent in bad weather. Guy-lines are fastened to the fly of your tent and then staked into the ground using the tent peg. Guy lines will also keep the fly taut and away from the tent walls allowing for more air circulation. This helps with ventilation – especially in humid weather.

A tent grommet Tent grommet
© Parks Canada / S. Burroughs

Grommet: A grommet is a metal ring inserted into the strips of nylon webbing found along the bottom of your tent as well as on the bottom of the fly. Usually, the metal tip of the tent poles will be inserted into the grommet (on some designs). They can also be used for tent pegs.

Tent sleeves: Tent sleeves are pieces of fabric attached to the tent body or fly that secure the tent poles to the tent body or fly.

Tent Clips: Tent clips are devices attached to the tent body and fly that secure the poles to the tent body or fly.

There are many different types of tents available to today’s campers. Most will come with an instruction manual. However, if you do not have the instructions, check out the page How to set up a tent for useful tips.