How To Choose A Tent That Is Going To Suit Your Camping Trips
Tents come in all shapes, sizes, colours and qualities with a variety of uses. Here is a few ideas that may help you decide what suits you.
Colour Tent colours generally are either bright or natural tones that blend in with the environment, which usually is the most popular. Maybe if you are hiking or backpacking in the bush or mountains a bright tent will stand out in case of an emergency and somebody is trying to locate you.
Easy To Set Up An easy to use and set up tent is much better especially after a long day on the road, try to avoid getting one just about needs an instruction manual to set it up. Can be very frustrating when tired.
Types Of Material Tents are generally made of cotton canvas or nylon polyester. They both have their advantages and disadvantages.
- The canvas tents are more upright and you can stand up anywhere inside,
- Canvas is a much more sturdy material than nylon.
- If something is touching the canvas like a pillow then water will seep through.
- They withstand all weather conditions very well.
- Depending on the size they pack up bigger and heavier than a nylon dome tent.
- There is some very easy to setup canvas tents like touring tents excellent for stopping for a night and moving on often
- If a canvas tent has to be packed when wet, it must be unpacked and dried out when you get home or as soon as possible
Dome Nylon/Polyester Tents
- The Dome nylon polyester tents can be time consuming to setup as they have the two parts and the poles need to be joined together.
- The big advantage with ‘domeys’ is they pack into a smaller light pack, which will suit some people if they have limited space in their vehicle.
- Dome tents are made with a light material that does not block any noise and makes a rustling noise when touched and in the wind.
- Usually you can only stand in the centre if the tent as the dome shape is limiting.
Quick Set Up Tents
Quick set up tents hhave been around a few years now, like the Oztent and Backwolf also make a similiar tent. The are made of good quality treated poly-cotton material which is strong, light and waterproof. They do pack up into a long heavy pack about 2m long, which may only fit on a roofrack or in a trailer. Well worth considering when you are looking around.
Size Tents come in all sizes from the very small – comfortable for one person to the 3 or 4 family sized. Every tent is rated with by how many can fit in the tent without allowing for luggage etc. So a 3 person will suit 2 people, a 6 person tent suits 3 or 4 people.
A suggestion is to work out how much room you need then get the next size so you will be comfortable. This all depends on your situation, how much room do you have in your vehicle and are you going to be touring or setting up the tent for several days or weeks and staying put.
A few things to check for when buying a tent is does it have plenty of ventilation, strong zips and avoid buying the cheapest tent. Look for a quality tent in the medium price range, you don’t have to buy the most expensive tent unless you want too of course. Also check around for different prices at your local camp shop or online you maybe surprised at the different prices for the same tent. It’s worth going to camping shows as they will show you all your options in the one place and a huge range of camping equipment will be displayed.
Your choice is affected by several factors
- how much you can afford
- how much space and weight matters to you – canvas weighs more and takes more space
- whether you tend to camp in one spot for a while or keep moving – if the latter, ease of set-up really matters
- the risk of camping in extreme conditions e.g. much better to be in a canvas tent in a big storm
Happy camping – What sort of tent do you use – what do you like or dislike about it?
My family have always used a canvas tent for the main tent, we used to have a larger one and have downsized to a tourer tent with the side poles. Which we have found to be excellent. Our kids use a dome tent and an older tourer tent with the centre pole.