American Tent’s very own Tent Guru, Pete McVey, who opened his tent company with just 2 tents, 10 tables, 100 chairs, and the goal of growing and educating others on the industry, gives you an easy-to-follow explanation of jumper lines.
A jumper line is a piece of rope that keeps the tent from jumping off of the side pole — hence the name jumper line. When the wind blows, there’s a chance that the tent can move up and down and eventually jump right off of the pole. Not to mention, as it comes back down, instead of landing right back where it should, it can easily fall elsewhere and rip a hole in your tent.
So how do you solve that? Make sure your jumper lines are nice and tight! Pull the jumper line
down, nice and tight, then come around the pole and go back in between the pole and the
jumper line, and then pull it down so that it gets tight. The next thing you do is wrap the excess rope around the pole, going around and around until you run out of rope. Lastly, tuck the end of the piece or rope and pull it down a little.