Best tent stake

Tents

Insert stakes into dense ground. If you can easily put a stake in with your hand, the area is likely too soft and won’t hold it.

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Which tent stake is best?

In order to enjoy camping to its fullest, it’s important to have the proper tent. That only takes you so far, however: the tent isn’t effective unless it’s secured to the ground.

Tent stakes are designed to provide a stable foundation for the tent and should be able to withstand any number of elements, including wind, rain and even snow. While most tents come with their own stakes, you’re best served to supplement those and have a backup set in case stakes break.

Our top pick, the Eurmax Galvanized Tent Stakes, is a 10-piece, heavy-duty set that’s made to last.

What to know before you buy tent stakes

Type

Shepherd hook: In lieu of a sharp point, these stakes feature rounded tips, which offer safety when transporting and wielding them. They won’t puncture a tent or your skin and they tend to be lightweight and sturdy.

V-stakes: These stakes feature sharp points that dig into the ground easily and remain stable. They’re fairly durable, making them useful for rough terrain.

Y-stakes: These versatile stakes are ideal for larger tents in need of more stability. They have a pointed tip and flat head, so they’re easy to insert into the ground, but harder to remove.

Hook: These budget-friendly stakes are best on softer ground. They bend but might break, so use them when conditions are favorable.

Nail stakes: These heavy-duty options come with a considerable amount of weight and require a hammer to get them into the ground. They’re durable and best used for large tents.

Material

Metal alloy: These lightweight and inexpensive options typically come with tents, but they lack durability and may bend easily.

Aluminum: More durable than metal alloy, aluminum options are typically inexpensive and light.

Steel: These options are among the most durable, but they’re also heavy. They should resist rusting or corroding.

Titanium: These are incredibly durable and lightweight. However, they come at a premium price.

Carbon: These are some of the lightest stakes and are fairly durable. They’re among the best options for backpacking.

Plastic: Lightweight and inexpensive, plastic stakes lack durability. They may be brightly colored, making them easier to spot in the dark.

What to look for in a quality tent stake

Size

The length, thickness and overall surface area of a stake influences how strong and secure it will be in the ground. Shorter stakes should be adequate if the ground is firm and the wind is lacking. Longer stakes provide more stability, particularly if the ground is soft, wet or sandy.

Flat top

Those stakes with flat tops are easy to hit into the ground and should provide more security. If the stake moves while you’re inserting it, you’re creating more room in the ground for the stake to move around in. Hitting the stake straight on a flat head should offer a more stable foundation.

Visibility

Some stakes are colored or more easily spotted in the dark, which is useful if you’re moving around when the sun goes down. This way, you can avoid tripping on them at night and can easily pull them up in the morning before sunrise.

How much you can expect to spend on tent stakes

You can find a low-cost set of tent stakes for less than $10, but you’re better off purchasing a large set of fairly durable ones. These cost $10-$25, depending on the material and amount.

Tent stake FAQ

Can you reuse tent stakes?

A. Tent stakes are designed to be reused, but inexpensive, less durable options are likely to wear down over time. Wash and dry your stakes after use to prevent them from breaking down, and always insert and pull them out carefully to avoid bending.

What’s the best way to insert stakes into the ground?

A. Using a mallet or hammer (or a flat rock) is the best way to safely and effectively insert stakes. You want to drive the stake straight down into the ground without bending or inserting it at an angle. Don’t use your hands or feet, as the stake could flex and you could injure yourself.

What’s the best tent stake to buy?

Top tent stakes

Eurmax’s Galvanized Tent Stakes

Eurmax’s Galvanized Tent Stakes

What you need to know: These are heavy-duty, durable steel stakes that offer security when camping for the largest of tents.

What you’ll love: This is a set of 10 high-quality, sturdy steel stakes. They resist corrosion and withstand regular use.

What you should consider: These are heavy and not ideal for backpacking.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top tent stakes for the money

Coghlan’s Rugged Plastic Tent Pegs

Coghlan’s Rugged Plastic Tent Pegs

What you need to know: This is a brightly colored, inexpensive set of effective tent stakes best for favorable conditions.

What you’ll love: The 12 plastic pegs offer great value. The set features a rope hook for easy setup and weatherproof construction.

What you should consider: This set lacks durability and won’t stand up to hard ground.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

MSR’s Cyclone Tent Stakes

MSR’s Cyclone Tent Stakes

What you need to know: These uniquely designed stakes are designed to withstand blustery elements and soft ground.

What you’ll love: The spiral design affords more stability and security during windy or wet conditions. The aluminum is durable and lightweight and the red color stands out.

What you should consider: This is pricey for four stakes.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

 

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Anthony Marcusa writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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