Written by: WA Adventurer

How to season a swag (getting ready for winter camping)

A swag is typically made from canvas or other heavy-duty fabrics, which can absorb water and become heavy and sodden when exposed to rain or moisture. If the swag is not properly prepared for wet weather, the water can seep through the fabric and make you and your bedding wet, making for an uncomfortable camping experience.

Seasoning a swag involves saturating the canvas or fabric with water and allowing it to dry, which causes the fibers to swell and become more tightly woven. This helps to close up any gaps or pores in the fabric, making it more water-resistant and preventing water from seeping through.

How to correctly season a swag

  1. Choose a dry, sunny day to start the process.
  2. Unroll the swag on a flat surface and set it up using the poles and guy ropes.
  3. Remove the mattress and any debris or dirt.
  4. Use a spray bottle to soak every seam inside the swag.
  5. For the outside, use a hose on a low pressure to entirely soak the swag. The water will initially run off but persist for several minutes until the canvas absorbs the water.
  6. Allow the swag to dry out completely in the sun. This may take several hours or even a full day depending on the weather conditions.
  7. Once the swag is dry, repeat the process two more times.
  8. Allow the swag to dry before packing it away to prevent mold.

By following these steps, your swag should be well-seasoned and ready to keep you dry during your camping trip. If, after seasoning, your swag is still not waterproof, you may want to consider applying a waterproof spray. You can get waterproof spray from Anaconda for less than $30 here.

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Are swags waterproof?

Swags are designed to be water-resistant, but they are not completely waterproof. When exposed to heavy rain or prolonged exposure to moisture, some water can still seep through the fabric and into the swag.

However, by properly seasoning and maintaining your swag, you can significantly improve its water-resistance and minimise the amount of water that gets through. Adding a tarp or fly over the swag can also provide additional protection from rain and moisture.

It’s important to keep in mind that while swags can provide a good level of protection from the elements, they are still primarily designed for use in dry weather conditions. If you are planning to camp in an area with heavy rain or other severe weather conditions, you may want to consider using a more specialised tent or shelter that is specifically designed for those conditions.

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