Best Tent Stakes for Backpacking and Easy Storage

Published October 4th, 2022 by Allen Campbell

best tent stakes for backpacking

When it comes to backpacking, there are numerous factors that must be considered. One factor that is often overlooked is the importance of having good tent stakes. That’s right, tent stakes! Tent stakes are a critical part of any backpacking setup, but it can be tough to know which ones to bring with you. 

Being stuck in the middle of nowhere with tent stakes that just won’t hold is not a fun experience. Trust me, I’ve been there. 

That’s why I’ve put together this list of the best tent stakes for backpacking. These stakes are strong and will definitely keep your tent secure, no matter what conditions you’re facing.

Best Tent Stakes for Backpacking: Summary

1. Vargo Ti Shepherds Hook Stake Orange

280+ Reviews

t is very important to choose lightweight stakes for backpacking since you will be carrying them with you on your hike. The Vargo Ti Shepherds Hook Stake is perfect for this purpose, as it is made from titanium. It is the most lightest and flexible type of stake, making it an excellent choice for backpackers.

Because of their flexibility, they can be used in a wide range of soil conditions. The unique flex allows the stake to follow the contours of the ground, making it less likely to pull out.

These stakes are easy to drive into any soft terrain, and they are also very durable. They’re bright orange, so you won’t have to worry about losing or leaving them behind as long as you use these. The hook design will make it easy to remove the stake from the ground, even when the ground is hard.

It is good to have flexible nature but sometimes it becomes a drawback too. If you try to install these by hand and foot, it might be difficult to do so. It is its bendy nature that makes it squirrelly to work with. Also, you should avoid putting too much force or stomping on these stakes as it might break them.


  • Super lightweight and easy to carry
  • Flexible and can be used in a variety of soil conditions
  • It’s simple to drive into the ground
  • Hook design makes it easy to remove
  • Visually easy to spot


  • Can break if too much force is used

2. MSR Groundhog Tent Stake Ki

1900+ Reviews

MSR Groundhog Stakes has been setting the standard in lightweight tent stakes for years. The perfect balance of weight and durability, they’re ideal for backpacking and camping trips. The weight of the MSR Groundhog is 0.46 ounces per stake, and the length is 7.5 inches.

The MSR Groundhog is the best tent stake on the market for those looking for both quality and reliability. I have used these stakes even in strong and high winds, and they have never failed me.

This is due to its y-beam design which has more surface area in contact with the ground than a traditional tent stake. I have never had one of these stakes bend, break, or pull out of the ground. Additionally, having a tent stake that is easy to drive into the ground and remove is important, and the tri-beam or y-beam design of the MSR Groundhog makes this possible.

You will be surprised to know that this stake is manufactured from aircraft-grade 7075 aluminum, making it one of the strongest and most durable stakes available on the market. You can easily set these stakes in any direction, and they will hold fast. 

The guy lines are also easy to attach and remove, and they’re placed in notches on the stake so they won’t slip. I have never had a problem with these stakes slipping or coming loose, even in high winds.

Unlike Vergo Hook Stake, you will have no problem breaking or bending these stakes while installing. It is because of the same reason; it is composed of aircraft-grade aluminum. Also, there is a paracord loop attached to the top of each stake which makes it easier to pull out.

Since it is less prone to breaking but still you need to be careful while installing them with your hand or foot. According to my experience, gently tapping them is usually the best method, without using too much force. In that way, you will not only avoid breaking the stake but also reduce the risk of damaging your gear.


  • Lightweight
  • Easy to drive into the ground
  • Y-beam design for added stability
  • Made of aircraft-grade aluminum
  • Comes with a paracord loop for easy removal
  • Won’t bend or break easily


  • The sack is not included

3. FANBX F Aluminium Tent Stakes Pegs with Hook

3200+ Reviews

If you are on a budget and cannot afford the expensive Vergo Shepherd Hook stakes, I would recommend the FANBX F Aluminum Tent Stakes. These stakes are made from high-quality aluminum and feature the same shepherd’s hook design. The weight is a bit heavier as compared to the Vergo shepherd hook at 0.67 ounces per stake.

Unlike other 6-piece stake packs, these come in a 12-pack, which is very practical if you’re concerned about bad weather or losing one in the dark. I was a little worried about the stability of these stakes, but they have held up my tent just fine in some pretty high winds. This was possible because of the hexagonal shape of the stake which provides more grip on the ground.

Earlier, I had faced the spinning issue with my old tent stakes, but with these, I haven’t had any problems. It’s also simple to remove the stakes from the ground because of the hook design. 

Additionally, I was impressed by how well these stakes held up against repeated hammering. Even though they did get bent out of shape, they were still able to provide good anchoring for my tent. And refused to break under pressure.

Remember, you will need a hammer to drive these stakes into the ground, which can be a problem if you’re trying to save weight on your backpacking trip. If you try to use your foot or hand to hammer these in, the stake will just spin in the ground. Mainly, you will face this problem on harder and rockier ground.

But the main issue with these stakes is that they are not as strong as the Vergo shepherd’s hook. Also, it can easily get bent if not placed properly, which reduces its overall usability. 

Overall, I would recommend these stakes if you are going to use them on softer ground and you’re not too concerned about bad weather. But if you’re expecting high winds or are backpacking in rocky terrain, I would recommend spending the extra money on Vergo shepherd’s hook stakes.


  • High-quality aluminum
  • 12-pack
  • The hexagonal shape provides more grip
  • Easy to remove
  • Hold up well against repeated hammering


  • To drive into the ground, you’ll need a hammer
  • Can get bent easily
  • Not suitable for rocky terrain or high winds

4. MSR Carbon Core 6-Inch Tent Stake

150+ Reviews

In backpacking, every ounce counts. That’s why MSR made these tent stakes out of carbon fiber- one of the strongest, lightest materials available. At only 6 inches long and weighing 0.19 oz each, these stakes are perfect for ultralight backpacking.

But don’t let their size fool you- they’re still strong enough to hold down your tent in rough terrain or bad weather. Also, the 7000 series aluminum body ensures that these stakes won’t bend or break, even under extreme conditions.

Don’t drive the stakes in with a hammer- the pressure might damage them. Instead, use your hand to gently tap them into the ground. MSR Carbon Core Tent Stake can be driven into the ground easily because of its wide head. In my whole list, these stakes have the widest head, which provides more surface area to grip the ground.

With its bright red color, this stake is easy to spot and retrieve. Make sure to pack a few of these essentials the next time you go on backpacking.


  • Lightest stake at only 0.19 oz
  • Made of carbon fiber and 7000 series aluminum
  • Wide head for easy driving into the ground
  • Bright red color to easily spot


  • Hammering the stake might damage it

5. Orange Screw: The Ultimate Ground Anchor

2600+ Reviews

This Orange Screw stake definitely lives up to its name – I was thoroughly impressed after seeing it in action. In terms of design and material, these stakes are totally different from the others on my list.

They are not made of metal but of high-strength Recycled Polycarbonate Plastic. What does that mean for you? It means that these stakes are incredibly light, at only 1.8 oz each. They are also resistant to corrosion and rust, ensuring that they will never become unusable. And, if you do happen to break one, they come with a Lifetime Breakage Warranty.

With these types of stakes, you never have to worry about using a hammer or your foot to drive it into the ground. The spiral design allows you to simply screw these stakes into the ground by hand. No pounding is required. Simply find a soft spot of earth, and screw away. It’s really that easy.

Not to mention, they are also a breeze to remove because they’re made of plastic. No more struggling to yank out metal stakes that seem to be fused with the ground. Simply reverse the screwing motion, and they will come out with ease. These stakes are also easily observed since to their bright orange color.

If you’re looking for a more sustainable option, these stakes are it. So you can feel good about your purchase, knowing that you are supporting a sustainable product. Also, the Orange Screw stake is made in the USA from recycled materials.

The only downside to these stakes is that they are not suitable for all types of terrain. They work best in soft, sandy soil. If you are planning on backpacking on the rocky or hard-packed ground, I would recommend you choose from one of the other options on my list.


  • Recycled polycarbonate plastic
  • Lightweight (1.8 oz each)
  • Rust and corrosion proof
  • No hammering or pounding required
  • Eco-friendly
  • Lifetime breakage warranty
  • Extremely easy to remove


  • Only suitable for soft, sandy soil

Buying Guide for Tent Stakes

Tent Stake Material

The first and most significant aspect to consider while purchasing stakes is the material. Below are different materials used in making tent stakes:

Steel: The steel stakes are a strong and durable option. They can take a lot of weight without bending. But, they are not light in weight due to which many backpackers avoid using them.

Aluminum: Aluminum stakes are lighter as compared to steel and are also strong enough to hold the weight of a tent. But, they can be bent if used with too much force. Even after being bent, they can hold the tent in place.

Titanium and Carbon Fiber: If you don’t mind spending a little extra, then go for titanium or carbon fiber stakes. They are the most superior option available in comparison to other similar products. They are, however, the most costly option.

Plastic: On the other hand, if you are not willing to spend much and are looking for an affordable option, then plastic stakes would be the best choice for you. They are less durable than metal ones and are more prone to damage. However, there are still better options available in plastic, which are quite strong and can be used without any worry.

Types of Tent Stakes

After knowing about the different materials used in making stakes, it’s time to learn about the different types of tent stakes available. Following are the most commonly used types of tent stakes:

Shepherd Hooks: They have a wide “U” shape on top, which makes it easy to hold the tent’s guylines. The best thing about them is that they don’t require a mallet or hammer for driving into the ground. But, they can get bent if used with too much force.

Y-Stakes: Y-shaped stakes are a popular option and are used by most backpackers. Mostly, you will find y-type stakes made of aluminum. The lightweight aluminum stakes are easy to carry and are also quite strong. As the name suggests, they have a “Y” shape which gives more holding power to the stake.

J-Stakes: These j-stakes are also called v-stakes. They are quite similar to y-stakes but have a “V” shape at the top. The v-shape provides a good grip to hold the guylines. However, y-stakes are more popular.

Snow/Sand Stakes: These stakes are generally meant for beaches or places with loose sand. They have a slightly curved and flat head, which provides decent holding power in the sand. 

However, they are not able to be used on all types of terrain and work better only in soft sand. These stakes have holes in them which makes them easy to drive into the sand. In snow, you can use these stakes by burying them into the ground horizontally.

Spiral/Screw Stakes: As the name suggests, they have a screw-like design, which makes them easy to drive into the ground. For driving these stakes into the ground, you don’t need a rock or hammer. Just use your body weight and hands to twist them into the ground. But, they cannot be used in all types of terrain and work best only in soft soil. Usually, you will find these stakes in plastic material.


Every ounce matters when you are carrying your gear on your back. Thus, the weight of the tent stakes is an important factor to consider while purchasing them. 

The weight of the stakes also determines how strong they are. Weight is less important for car campers in comparison to backpackers. But, if you are planning on carrying your tent and all your gear on your back, then every ounce counts!

With ultralight tent stakes, you can save precious ounces that add up over time. By switching to lightweight tent stakes, you can shave pounds off your total pack weight. This is an excellent way to save money while still having a great time on your camping trip.

Remember that ultralight stakes are not always the strongest or most durable. Before you buy stakes, make sure you check the details.

Finding the Best Tent Stakes for Backpacking: Bottom Line

Whether you’re an ultralight backpacker or just looking for some extra insurance against high winds, investing in a good set of tent stakes is always a good idea. Tent stakes may seem like a small detail, but they can make all the difference between a comfortable night’s sleep and a sleepless night spent tossing and turning in your tent.

In order to make sure you purchase the best tent stakes for your needs, I have listed down my top 5 picks for the best tent stakes available on the market today. According to my personal experience and long hours of research, MSR Groundhog Tent Stake (7.5 inches long) is my top pick for the best overall tent stake.

Allen Campbell with Master Canopies

Allen Campbell

Allen is a full time writer at and enjoys traveling around the United States and exploring nature. He enjoys writing about canopies as he believes they are extremely crucial in having a successful camping trip whether it be a trip to the beach, mountains, or the open plains.

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