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Will going from an Outwell tent to a Hi Gear feel like a downgrade? Or should we get a Vango? Or any other suggestions for 6+ man tent?

(24 Posts)
Slubberdelatrinae Mon 01-Jul-13 16:13:22

we only have a front/back dividing curtain in the pyramid and tbh this will probably be our last year camping in it. the dds want their own room.

Slubberdelatrinae Mon 01-Jul-13 16:09:43

er. Pyramids do not = glampy thankyouverymuch. My beautiful cabanon pyramid has never had the slightest whiff of bunting upon it, nor fairy light/chandelier/prissy rug shite. Sensible, practical stuff only in my storm-tenten.

Canvas is a lovely fabric to camp under so long as you are prepared to put up with becoming a fanatical dryer-outer before you pack it away for long periods. tbh I frequently wonder if the pleasure to be had inside is worth the un-pleasure that occurs when you have to re pitch the bastard at home, particularly given our gonorrhearic climate.

i'd do a vango over a hi-gear if I had to chose between the two. Outwell have just gone cerazzeee prices these days, who do they think they are? De-Waard?

Hopefully Mon 01-Jul-13 13:58:29

grin rain! I know it's a bit marmite really.

I think part of the problem is we don't have any close family or friends who camp much (our parents are camper van/caravaners and we have a couple of friends who on the odd time they do go make use of a two man eurohike tent), so we're really stabbing in the dark trying to work out what we want, and we've really only got our own camping experience to go on.

I think I could be persuaded either way quite easily, but am hoping that DH, when he finally has amassed all the information he needs, will have a preference one way or the other.


inneedofrain Mon 01-Jul-13 13:38:28

Ok, I am not sure if anyone can give you a definative answer! Tents in my honest experience are marmite items. We all love camping BUT everyone has a preference for tent type, manufactorer and the things they won´t / will compromise on

I wounld´t have a bell tent if you paid me

I don´t want to have to dry it

Two I don´t like the shape of them (for me) too many low corners

I do luxury camping ie I have blow up mattresses etc but I do it my tunnel tent with tonnes of storage etc

I like the privacy of all having seperate bedrooms. as a point I can store the content of my entire tent in my middle bedroom and still have ample room to use it for changing etc.

I love that I can put everything away and be neat and tidy
Yes I do have storgage tables etc. But its still nice to have somewhere to put stuff like cases etc that is NOT the car!

I don´t want to be able to roll the side of my tent up to let more light / breeze etc in

I like having fly screens on windows and doors and you will not convince me otherwise

I have a zig, as it means that even if the ground is super muddy I can pack up the tent and then the ground sheet seperately (and clean that)

Its bathtub style so no drafts (not that it would be a problem on my airbed sorry duvet system)

I also have a foot print sheet (and rug for the winter)


Other people love their bell tents and wouldn´t sleep in a polycotton tunnel tent for all the tea in china! And will no doubt have there own pros list

Do you have any camping friends that have a bell tent? Could you explain and ask if you could go camping together and do a tent swap one night?

Its personal choice I´m afraid and everyone is going to have a different prefernce. Sorry

Puts on hard hat and hopes that no one kills me for my dislike of Bell Tents

Hopefully Mon 01-Jul-13 12:31:56

I needed a definitive answer, people! grin

I am actually further away from making a decision than I was two days ago. We knew nothing when we bought the Outwell, so just bought it on the recommendation of someone on here because it was on offer, but now I am looking at things like HH, cotton v polycotton v polyester, bathtub v ZIG v SIG.

I think the first decision we need to make is whether we want to do modern camping with a big polycotton/polyester tent, or glampy camping with a bell/pyramid tent. Cons of glampy camping seem to largely be based around lack of separate compartments, and the trouble is I won't know if that will bother me until I'm actually camping in one!

Otherworld Mon 01-Jul-13 10:46:50

Just to defend Hi Gear we had a Kalahari 10 tunnel tent which we loved. It stood up to plenty of rain with no problems.

We replaced it this year only because we wanted a poly cotton one which is even more fabulous but takes about 2 hours to put up!

maturenanny Mon 01-Jul-13 10:42:35

A vote for vango here, we have a samara 600 and our friends just used their Maritsa 700 and love it! There are two adults and two teenagers in their family, it works perfectly!!

Good luck

Ps I too wouldn't touch hi gear, low HH and also te couple I have seen leaked badly!

midoriway Mon 01-Jul-13 09:39:26

I love my Outwell. After years of putting up with less than great tents, I don't think I could ever stray from Outwell again.

justforachange Mon 01-Jul-13 09:36:10

Our last tent was a Hi Gear something or other, can't remember the name, and it leaked on its second exposure to wild Highland weather. That was a few years ago though so things might have changed? We've got an Outwell Cleveland 6 now - 2 sleeping pods and a middle bit all with SIG and then a front part that has a peg in groundsheet. We've only used it twice so far but I think it would be difficult to put up on your own. We paid just over 400 for our 2012 model but I don't see any for that price now on a quick Google

Iaintdunnuffink Sun 30-Jun-13 23:18:39

I have a Hi Gear Gobi and its a fantastic tent, stood up to torrential rain and high winds. I would buy another Hi Gear.

BumgrapesofWrath Sun 30-Jun-13 23:02:16

I have a Hi-Gear Voyager, and I think structurally it is one of the most stable tents. I know it is cheaper, but we've been very impressed with the design of it, and it seems durable. We've had ours two years, no problems, though we do only take it out about five times a year.

Hopefully Sun 30-Jun-13 11:27:01

Polycotton is crazy expensive! But I do love the Outwell we have, and can imagine that nicer fabric would be lovely, especially as we intend to use it more and more now we actually have the time to have the occasional weekend away!

inneedofrain Sun 30-Jun-13 10:38:43

Um, I have a ridiculously huge Outwell (5 room one) it is stupid big. BUT I can put it up on my own. Its not particularly easy but as it is a tunnel tent it is just a matter of moving one side of a poll and then moving the other. Mine was second hand and really far to big for just DD and me, but we have started to take a couple of DD friends camping as they are having a bit of a hard time at home and it is ideal for that! The kids have the big bedroom, I use the middle one for storage then I have the other small bedroom! Its polycotton and to be honest is about 5 years old already and still looks brandnew! It keeps a nice tempreture and is very comfortable (I´m not in the Uk and it is already stinking hot here) They are bloody expensive new though!

I would certainly look at polycotton though

Hopefully Sun 30-Jun-13 10:25:27

Oh god, now I'm flapping about polyester v polycotton tents. Both the Hi Gear and the Vango are polyester, wondering whether we should be thinking of something polycotton, since the aim is for this to be a 6-7 year tent.

Redbug Sun 30-Jun-13 09:43:48

Oh, have NC'ed, incidentally.

Redbug Sun 30-Jun-13 09:40:30

Oldest is almost 5, youngest only just two, so still a bit young for going it alone, sadly. Cannot wait to get them in their own tent, but suspect DS1 will be in with us till he is 30... <sigh>

Blu Sat 29-Jun-13 22:08:37

How old are your boys?

DS has preferred sleeping in his own small tent since he was about 9 - supplement your current Outwell with a good pup tent?

Hopefully Sat 29-Jun-13 20:24:59

Ooh, have just been looking at the Vango Marista 500, looks slightly more feasible than the crazy big 700. And also seems slightly more inclined to fit inside the standard pitch footprint at a few of our favourite campsites. Will go and google Vango Samara.

Although DH has just thrown a spanner in the works by announcing he may be persuadable on the bell tent front because we have a dehumidifier to dry it out. Sigh.

cece Sat 29-Jun-13 16:37:08

Vango Samara might suit.

GivemeaCamembert Sat 29-Jun-13 16:26:13

We have the vango marista 500 and love it. 2 double sleeping pods, 1 single, a large living space and built in front porch area means that you can keep the living/sleeping space clean/dry. Possible to put it up by 1 person, there are good videos online which give a better demonstration of erecting the tent then the instructions, easier with 2 though. There are some handy storage pockets and hanging rail too for all the stuff :-)

silasramsbottom Sat 29-Jun-13 16:10:39

Thoroughly recommend Vango tents. We have a Kasari 600. It is great!

Hopefully Sat 29-Jun-13 14:27:46

Of course, I quite fancy a 5m bell, but DH has squashed that idea big time since there are usually five of us in the tent. Even with a quarter or semi inner pod, I guess that's a bit cosy.

teacherandguideleader Sat 29-Jun-13 14:25:09

I personally wouldn't touch hi gear - I think normally they are cheaper because they are not as waterproof. I'd go with a vango every time.

Hopefully Sat 29-Jun-13 14:05:21

We've currently got an Outwell 4 man tent. Can't remember the name off the top of my head, but it's a bog standard 4 man tunnel tent, with two double sleeping pods in the back. Nice and robust though, thanks to steel poles, so doesn't move much in the wind. It's not one of the ££££ Outwell ones though, just their bog standard range. Think it was about £225 six years ago.

Now that DS1 and 2 are bit bigger, and the fact that we often seem to have one extra person camping with us, our 4 man tent is feeling a bit cramped - more due to the amount of stuff we take with us than the actual bodies in it. We are not minimalist campers grin.

We visited Go Outdoors today with the vague specifications of:
- A tent with three sleeping pods/rooms, so we have somewhere to store our stuff that isn't the main living area
- At least a 5 man tent
- A budget of no more than £400-ish, but that's flexible for the perfect tent and we can save up for a couple of months and limp through this year on the old Outwell.

The two front runners are currently a Vango Maritsa 700 and a Hi Gear Voyager 6. DH likes the Vango, I like the smaller Hi Gear, as DH or I occasionally arrive at a campsite first and get started before the other arrives (often one of us goes on the train as we take too much stuff to all fit in our not-very-big-Skoda!) and I think the Vango will be too massive.

Any thoughts? Is the Vango going to be too enormous to put up, even partially, by one person? Are the Hi Gear tents crap? Are there any other 5+ man tents with three bedrooms that might fit the bill that I'm missing?

I do love the solid feeling of the Outwell, and I can't help feeling that the Hi Gear, much as I prefer the size, might feel a bit flimsy.


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