Outdoor Flooring Part 1
Perhaps you are an event planner coordinating a large concert in the wilderness. Or maybe you are a military commander searching for more efficient ways to construct and deconstruct field tents. In any case, you face an unusual challenge. You need to set up a tent or a shelter outdoors. What portable flooring, if any, should you get?
In this four-part blog post series, we will walk you through exactly how to research and choose the ideal flooring. We will start by examining the big picture (in this post) and refine our criteria in future posts.
When the weather is nice, who wants to think about flooring?!? (Photo credit: United With Love)
The simplest option (obviously) is no flooring at all. Depending on your needs, this may be just fine. Maybe you are pitching a tent on grass or hard-packed dirt. The weather is good. The terrain is even.
But what happens when Mother Nature doesn’t cooperate with your plans? Rain and mud can put a damper on your outdoor event (Photo credit: Troy Daily News)
But what if it rains and your guests didn’t bring their Spartan Race gear? What if you are setting up camp in a muddy area or on a place where the vegetation is ragged? You could encounter problems. The next step up might be fabric flooring. This solution is frankly not that common in commercial rental markets. However, it has its uses. Fabric can seal your tent, and it provides more protection against the elements than no flooring at all.
Fabric flooring can provide some protection from wet and muddy ground. But surely people will track mud and water in; where will it end up? You guessed it: everywhere. (Photo credit: Federal-Fabrics-Fibers, Inc.)
However, if the ground underneath the floor is soft and muddy, fabric can’t prevent you from sinking in with every step—a sensation comparable to walking on top of a waterbed. Also, what happens when people track water or mud or debris into the tent? There is no drainage system. The liquid will pool and create a nasty mess.
Your final option is some sort of modular hard flooring. This solution can provide substantial support; create a barrier between you and the ground; and establish a firm foundation for solid footing.
Hardened modular flooring with drainage holes can turn a muddy field into a usable, livable space for any outdoor event. (Photo credit: Bike Track, Inc.)
Stay tuned for our next blog post, where we will explore this last option in greater depth and examine various types of hard floor solutions for tents.