How To Dry Wet Clothes When Camping

Last Updated on January 1, 2023 by Mosabbir

Your clothes can quickly get wet on a hiking or trekking trip. If you have even traveled in winters, you know how challenging it can be to stay warm and dry your clothes outdoors.

So, it’s crucial to understand how to dry clothes fast, especially if you are planning a camping trip.

Well, there are various ways to dry your clothes rapidly, and we will discuss all the options here so that you can use them in unfortunate incidents.

For instance, unexpected rainfall might interfere with your outdoor activities because you cannot continue in wet clothes. Plus, staying wet can make you ill.

Knowing how to dry clothes faster is also helpful if you have washed some of them at the campsite.

The information is useful in winters when the temperatures are low. Now you know multiple reasons to fasten the drying process.

We will discuss some top-notch techniques to dry all your clothes at the campsite without waiting.

Keep in mind that the drying of clothes outdoors depends on the weather and factors like air pressure or flow, spinning, and heat. Let’s discuss how so that you can conveniently enjoy your upcoming camping trips.

How to Dry Clothes Fast: Helpful Tips for Outdoor Enthusiasts

Let’s start with a situation where it has rained heavily, or you have sweated a lot while covering a hiking trail.

It’s very uncomfortable to wear wet clothes in the summer. Yes, you can quickly dry light and thin clothes. But, thick and heavy clothes might need some added effort and time.

Drying clothes in the sun and wind

After dealing with the rain, it’s better to go back to your camp, put on other clothes, and leave the dry bones in the sun. Lay them on rocks for fast drying. You can also put the fabrics on your tent or foldable chair, where they can get direct sun rays. Keep an eye on the clothes and keep folding them frequently for fast drying.

If you have a clothesline, then you can quickly dry the clothes using sunlight. Use two trees or your motorhome and a branch to set it up. Put all your garments on the line. Leave some distance between the wears so that they can leave all the moisture without any interferences.

Make sure that the clothesline is under direct contact with sun rays. Do not place the clothes under shadows or tree shades. If the sun is not in the mood to raise the temperatures, but there are strong winds, the clothes will be moisture-free after some time.

Things change if you wash your clothes in the evening or it rains later in the night. Strong winds can still help. Alternatively, you can enjoy a campfire and hang all the wet clothes nearby. Use a clothesline and put your clothes a few feet away from the fire. Maintaining the distance is crucial because some of the synthetic fabrics are highly combustible and catch fire instantly.

Apart from that, it’s better to monitor your clothes and turn them frequently, which helps them to dry rapidly. This action also lets you know that the clothes are not overheated. Before hanging the clothes, we suggest that you wring out all the water. More water levels will increase the drying time. Squeeze your clothes with full physical strength to remove all the moisture.

These steps are also applicable if you are wet because of over sweating or washing the clothes. Sweat might not make the garments wet like rainfall. Still, dry them to be comfortable and germ-free.

You might also be interested in: Best Small Washing Machine For Caravan

Use towels to wrap the clothes

Some extra towels can be very helpful when you have to deal with unexpected showers. You need to wrap the wet garments inside a dry towel, which absorbs all the moisture. So, you see a dry fabric.

Are you a true hiker? Then you will never wait to explore the new area or forest. But, wet outfits can delay this process. It’s where a dry towel comes into the picture and offers you pleasing results.

Drying your clothes using dry towels is easy. The first step is to squeeze your garments hard and tight to eliminate the maximum amount of water. Then, fold the clothes inside a dry towel. Twist and pack the towel to boost the absorption of water.

Do not include too many clothes at once. Otherwise, the results might not be satisfactory—pack one or two garments at one time. You can repeat the steps with more dry towels if the clothes are not dried properly.


Hang clothes on your backpack

Keep some extra pair of wears in your waterproof bag. If you get caught in unexpected rainfall, dress using dry clothes and hang the wet ones on your backpack. As you move forward, the sun and wind will do their work.

This technique works better on light and thin clothes. The method is especially effective if the sun is working at its full power or the winds are flowing fast. These two factors are always helpful.


Iron the clothes to help them dry fast

Electric irons are essential household appliances, but you can such a device outdoors as well. A portable iron can release all the moisture from your clothes without taking much time. After ironing the garments, we suggest that you hang them under direct sunlight for the final touch.

Apart from electric irons, traditional variants absorb heat when you put one of them on fire. Such tools were used in the past, but they are still helpful. A conventional iron can eliminate all the moisture from your garments within a few minutes.

Be careful while using these heavy irons on the clothes. Do not put the iron directly on your clothes. Instead, use a towel in between the tool on your garments. The towel will absorb the moisture and also protect your fabrics from excess heat.

If you want to wash clothes outdoors and expect them to dry fast, then wish for some favor from the weather. Washing and then drying a significant number of clothes is not easy. So, it’s hard to accomplish this task if the temperature is low. But, you can try one of the methods we discussed to reduce the drying time. Plus, follow the given tips for a better outcome.


Use a tabletop dryer

If you need a quick and efficient way to dry clothes, then a portable dryer can do the trick. Most of these devices are small so you can install one of them in your caravan.

Dry small garments in an oven

Don’t be surprised because it’s possible to dry your clothes using an oven. However, this method is only suitable for small items like underwear or socks. Plus, it time taking. For instance, a pair of socks or underwear can take up to 60 minutes to be ready.

You can give it a shot if you want. Preheat the oven at 100 degrees and place some small garments on a baking sheet. Once the range is ready, shut it down and put this sheet inside your own.

Wring out all the excess water before you put them inside your oven. The appliance takes more time to dry your clothes if they are high in moisture. You can also spin the garments to get rid of excess water.


Wire out excess water

Whether you are drying the clothes in the day or night, it’s crucial to remove excess water from them. So, wrench and wring all the garments after washing them. This step will fasten their drying process.

Hold the garment in both of your hands, wring it tightly to remove all the water. Drop it on the ground, but far away from your camping site. It’s better to squeeze the garments inside your bucket or container.

Once you get rid of all the excess water by wiring the clothes, the next step is to use some dry towels to absorb the remaining moisture. The outcome of this step depends upon the towel’s material. If the towels are made of cotton or wool, then they will perform better. You can repeat the steps with other dry towels if the fabrics are not dry.

The time to complete this process could be higher if you wash a significant amount of clothes. However, we expect that you will not take the whole wardrobe on a camping holiday. But, you cannot find any escape if traveling with kids or pets.

If you don’t have to leave immediately, we suggest hanging the fabrics on a clothesline under direct sunlight. Use rocks If you don’t have a washing line. Monitor all the garments frequently to help them dry faster.

You can hang the clothes on a tree if the weather is windy. Put the garments apart so that they can evaporate all the moisture without any compromise. Light and thin garments dry faster when compared to our jeans and jackets.


Use a campfire to dry your clothes

If you are unfortunate and there are not many sunrays or helpful winds, then try campfire. It replaces sun rays and makes your camping trip even more enjoyable, especially in winters. However, there are areas where you will not find direct sunlight, even in the summers. So, a bonfire is helpful in all these situations.

The first step is to set up a fire sufficient enough to raise the temperature. It’s better to use natural resources because fire accelerators like paraffin or gasoline are unsuitable for the environment. Plus, such substances might pass unwanted odour to your clothes.

Do not use any chemical substance to initiate the fire. These things are harmful to our ecosystem. Use dry branches and leaves to start the campfire. Hang your clothes nearby the torch so that they can get the required amount of heat to get rid of all the moisture. Keep changing the sides of your clothes so that the heat can all do the work without any barrier.

As we discussed earlier, you can use iron to dry the washed clothes. You can also combine both fire and iron to get desired drying results.


Sleep with the damp clothes on

What? Are you out of your mind? It’s what you might think. However, the body has sufficient heat to dry any of the damp fabrics. Plus, it’s better if you are resting inside your sleeping bag. The bag can work as a helping factor to dry out one of the wet garments. Follow this technique only if you can withstand both hot and cold feelings.


Points to consider

You are outdoors, maybe in the forest or some other place where you cannot take suggestions or cannot even use Google to get some answers. So, it’s better to be prepared. Remember the following points when you are leaving for an outdoor trip.

Do not use your sleeping bag to dry heavily wet clothes. Plus, you cannot use it to dry a lot of clothes. If you wash a significant number of clothes, then try other techniques to dry them.

Be careful while starting a bonfire. Take all the safety precautions. For instance, do not plan the fire too close to your tents or any other flammable item. Never use any chemicals to spark the fun. One wrong step can destroy all the fun.

Check the weather forecast before planning the trek or washing the clothes. As we discussed, drying the garments is challenging in unfavorable climate conditions. Even after all the planning, if it rains, hang all the washed clothes inside your tent.



We provided detailed information about how to dry clothes fast when you are outdoors. You can try one of the methods according to your choice, but make sure you follow all the instructions. Be attentive while starting the campfire. It can do more bad than good, especially if you are not careful. So, plan the fire away from the tents and do not hang your clothes too close to it. Best of luck and happy holidays.