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tent pegs


  • tent pegs have several roles for campers:
    • ensure the tent does not get blown away in the wind (these are the pegs used at each corner of the tent)
    • for non-freestanding tents, they provide structural support to allow the tent to stand
    • they can be used with guy ropes to support an awning or tarp pole
    • they can be used with guy ropes to provide structural support to the tent frame in strong winds - the less the tent frame gets moved in winds, the less likely it will break
    • the more solid pegs (especially the tri-beam pegs) can also he used as the “spike” for the Marlin spike knot which is used in the Trucker's hitch and other knots to create high tension in ropes
  • the size and type of peg best suited for a purpose depends upon:
    • the expected forces likely to be applied to the peg
      • guy ropes in windy conditions will generally apply far greater forces than the forces applied to a peg holding the corners of the tent down
    • the type of soil / sand the peg is being used in
    • the cost, weight and size constraints if hiking
  • tent pegs should be placed at a 45deg angle for maximum stability
  • a claw hammer is really useful as the claw can be used to pull out very hard to remove pegs such as in hard clay soils
    • a sledge hammer is even better if you have large heavy duty angle iron pegs for sandy areas
    • hikers can generally just push their small pegs in and can use a rock for more difficult ones
  • a tent peg remover is small and light and will save you a lot of back issues if you are using larger pegs but will fail on very tough pegs to pull out in which case, a claw hammer is a better option, especially for car campers


  • weight becomes very important, and fortunately, most hiking tents are low profile, light and aerodynamic and thus forces on the pegs even in strong winds is lower than with larger tents and thus smaller, lighter pegs can be used
  • campers often strengthen the ability for these small pegs to hold in the ground by placing a large rock on top of the guy rope just next to the peg
  • there is a wide range of pegs available
  • a popular type are the aluminium or titanium tri-beam pegs which provide much better stability than simple rod-type pegs which have a tendency to rotate and allow the guy rope to fall off

Car camping with larger tents, awnings or tarps

  • weight is no longer such an issue
  • if very hard ground
    • screw type drillable Hex pegs which can be rapidly screwed in or out with a power drill (preferably not an impact drill) using their hexagonal bolt at the top
      • if ground is too hard even for this, you can use your drill with a drill bit first to make an initial hole
      • guy rope is attached to the peg below the collar - NOT directly onto the plastic collar wing only
      • expensive stainless steel 19mm hex screw tent / awning pegs
        • if you don’t have a drill, you may be able to use the hand crank that came with your adjustable stabilisers for caravan legs
        • these are generally too wide for most tent pole anchor holes but should be fine for caravan awning anchor holes
          • 250mm long stainless steel screw pegs with self drilling tip and 19mm hex bolt top; the plastic hook collar guy holder can be screwed down the shaft so it will still work even if can't screw the peg fully into the ground
          • but they are expensive at around $AU16-19 each!
      • expensive flat top stainless steel 15mm hex pegs for awning pole anchors
        • Oztrail Hook Top Hex drillable 15mm hex bolt $AU13-20 each
      • expensive aluminium alloy 17mm hex screw pegs
        • these may have a 17mm hex bolt
        • 150g 30cm length screws with a ABS Guyrope Holder Clip costs around $AU22 ea
        • PetPeg (HP62) 33cm long designed for holding dog leashes costs around $AU27 ea
      • less expensive galvanised steel 13mm hex screw pegs (these will corrode much more rapidly)
        • usually about 70g per 8“ peg and tend to have 13mm hex bolts and 7.4mm diameter screws and cost around $AU2 each
        • Oztrail 16 piece screw in kits
        • noctilucent glow in the dark plastic collared pegs
      • plastic hex screw pegs for sand or matting
        • usually have 17mm hex bolts but 31cm ones can be ~$AU15 each and weigh around 250g
        • often used without collar for anchoring floor matting
        • eg. PeggyPegs - 12cm and 20cm pegs in a kit and PeggyPegs ultimate also includes 31cm pegs
  • if camping is sand or sandy soils with strong winds expected then you should have a very strong peg which will resist pulling through the sand or rotating
    • large 450mm, heavy (650g ea) steel angle iron pegs are fantastic for this and can save your trip and your tent but will need a sledge hammer to drive into the sand
    • large 280-410mm plastic sand pegs can also be used, one can get glow in the dark versions however, these can break
    • wide aluminium sand pegs can be used but they need to be driven completely into the sand otherwise they risk bending in half
    • 230mm galvanized iron (zinc-plated) angle pegs
  • most other purposes
    • good solid galvanised steel pegs generally suffice but in coastal regions will rust within a few days of use and a selection of sizes is useful:
      • 12mm x 300-450mm for guy ropes
      • 5mm x 175-210mm for less stressful areas such as pegging out the sides of a tent fly or the windows
    • light, small aluminium pegs
      • for less stressful areas such as pegging out the sides of a tent fly or the windows
      • these do bend easily! Don't be lazy and use your foot to push them into the ground!
australia/tent_pegs.txt · Last modified: 2023/02/04 11:55 by gary1

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