Spring ! Flowers a buddin’, grass a greenin’ ,and that most dreaded task of the season-spring cleaning. Even those of us who try to avoid those house cleaning chores by playing outdoors all the live long day may have some work ahead of us-to get the funk off our outdoor junk.
I’m talking about cleaning your backpack and tent.
Cleaning Your Backpack
For a quick clean, simply empty it and give it a good wipe with a small amount of detergent free soap (Dove) on a damp rag.
But sooner or later that baby is going to need a bath!
How to Wash Your Machine Washable Backpack in the Washing Machine
First, check the label to make sure it’s actually machine washable.
Make sure your washing machine is big enough to handle your backpack with room to swish around properly
Empty your backpack and check all the pockets , leaving pockets unzipped .If your backpack has a metal frame, remove this before washing. If there is a collection of sand, dirt and miscellaneous crap in the pockets, give them a quick vacuuming with the vacuum crevice tool.
Turn your backpack inside out or wash inside a pillow case to keep straps from getting entangled. Use a small bit of of bleach free detergent. Forgo heavy duty regular detergent or fabric softener as these may damage the pack. Wash in cold water on a gentle cycle.
Turn the bag right side out and dry naturally, hanging upside down if possible. Make sure the bag is 100% dry before storing it away.
Next, let’s look at your tent-whether it’s just been packed away a bit wet from a recent weekend trip or simply getting ready to pack it away for a while.
Cleaning Your Tent
It’s important to dry out your tent to prevent mildew and damaging the tent fabric and it’s coating. A wet tent that turns mildowy will soon stink. A quick post-camping wipe with water, dish detergent and a sponge will prevent that,-then just leave it up outside to dry thoroughly before packing away. If the tent already has that moldy funk, try a mixture of non-detergent soap ( Dawn is a non detergent soap) 1 cup of salt, 1 cup of lemon juice, and 1 gallon of hot water nd a soft brush. Do the exterior and interior for the best chance of removing the moldy smell. Leave it up to dry thoroughly.
You can, if you are ambitious enough,(I am not) quickly clean your tent after each trip using a sponge and water with dishwashing soap. Again, leave it up to dry .
Please don’t get lazy and throw it in the washing machine or dryer, as tempting as that may be .
This is a good time to check for tears and rips or broken zippers and get those looked after before you repack it.
Refrain from leaving your tent stored on a garage floor where it may come in contact with spills or dampness.
Be Ready for a Special Announcement Coming April 1st !!