Windbreaks for Camping

The camping windbreak dates back to prehistoric times from when human beings first discovered that sitting behind a hedge or a rock acted as a windbreak.  Truly wild camping in those days!

Accelerate a few thousand years and humans moved into houses and I guess somewhat ironically decided to then go camping and caravaning.   The Isle of Wight is a very popular spot for campers and caravans and can of course be very windy.   Early campers appear to have just got on with it without the need for windbreaks.

That basic premise of shelter, warmth, fire (caveman again) is what is provided by a windbreak when camping however and over the years they have become increasingly popular at campsites especially.

Whilst there is little in the way of advice, some camping forums argue between privacy and the anti-social aspects of erecting a wall between you and your fellow campers.  Some highlight the usefulness if you have dogs and other bemoan the common site of too many guy ropes (in their opinion).  What is clear however is that windbreaks in campsites and caravan parks are here to stay.

To this end and given the lack of advice on the subject we thought we would offer a few tips and what we have learnt from our customers who have purchased our sailcloth windbreaks for camping purposes:

1.  If you need a six panel windbreak or more, buy two or more three panel windreakes, a six panel is heavy, awkward to put up (especially in the wind) and is trickier for us to make :)

2.  Go bright.  Traditionally, camping windbreaks are green or blue with an occasional stripe thrown in for good measure.  Stand out on the campsite and jazz it up.   Do you want to be unique?

3.  Get a good hammer or mallet.  We had some from eBay and the heads fell off after the third strike.  Check the windbreak has metal spikes if using wooden poles.

4.  Look after your windbreak.  Wipe it clean and let it dry.   Maybe bring it in at night if poachers are around.

5.  Many modern camping windbreaks have guy ropes.  Do you really need them?   If your tent has guys ropes then you will be tripping or dodging guys ropes all night long :)

6.  Cheap nasty nylon windbreaks are cheap for a reason.  Avoid them.

7.  If you need to be super light, then sailcloth may not be your best option.

8.  Is your windbreak upcycled or made from recycled materials.

We have said it before, but there is something really comforting and satisfying when sat behind your recycled sailcloth windbreak, knowing that the sails once sailed the oceans and knowing that you have saved such sails from landfill.   We coined the phrase ‘retirement for old sails’ !