Can I sleep in a sleeping bag on the ground without a tent?

by Axel
(Seattle)

Hi, I want to go to the Olympic National Park and stay for a night on the mountain, it is my first time doing this, so I am kind of nervous.

Is a camp necessary? Can I sleep on the ground in a sleeping bag? If so, do I need to worry about wild animals/worms?

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Aug 09, 2022
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by: Diane

Hi there. You are asking some good questions, and I'll answer them here but also want to add that I hope you are going with someone who has been camping before. They should have some equipment and knowledge that will make your ONP trip more fun. This website also has tips for you.

Yes, you can camp without a tent at low elevation, using a tarp plus a pad plus a sleeping bag. Morning dew might be a problem, and you'll want to wear a hat and socks to keep warm. If you're at higher elevation, nights get cold/foggy (marine layer from the coast) and the comfort of a tent or a hammock off the ground should be strongly considered.

Storing your food away from wild animals is important. If you're in the park itself, read the rules about food storage and be prepared to follow them. If you're at a campground, locking food in your car is sufficient.

And no worries about worms. They stay in their burrows unless it rains, and have no interest in you when they pop up to the surface.

Enjoy your trip!

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Diane is the founder of Hiking For Her.

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