How many of you have had this situation happen? It’s early in the morning and you’re about to strike your tent. You casually pull the stakes, maybe toss them on the ground, rocks, snow. After the climb you get home and find you now have 7, not 8 stakes. Here’s two tips to help you out.
1) Spray paint part of each stake for easy visibility. A clean way to do this without having to hand hold each stake is to get a piece of scrap cardboard from a box. Make a small hole or slit in the cardboard for each stake. Shove about 3/4 of the stake through the cardboard. Spray paint one to two coats of some kind of easy to see color on the top of the stake. Day-Glo Orange is a good choice, as its easier to spot. Rustoleum brand works well.
2) To make sure you don’t lose any, store them in a Zip-lock bag and write the amount of stakes in the bag on it with an indelible marker. That will make a no-brainer out of the “how many stakes did I bring" question.