Which family tent?(11 Posts)
We are planning to starting to go camping,(or I am and persuading husband)! Daughters 3 and 20 months. We always went camping as children (albeit eurocamp), and I did a lot of camping in my 20s so not new to me. What is however is the family tent set up. I'm looking for recommendations on makes and models of tents. Camping I am guessing at least for the next few years will mainly be uk and weekends.
It needs to be big enough for us 4 plus dog, tall as husband is well over 6 foot, solid (ie I do not want to have water everywhere) and value for money. What I am not sure is how many sleeping compartments we need (girls may want to be by themselves in a couple of years).
So any recommendations or things I need to consider?
The canvas outwell bear lake is the dog bollocks, my husband is very tall and we have for this and many other reasons, you can get them on ebay/gumtree at a fraction of the cost, there is a website (you can watch the perfect couple put it up) to help you learn how to put up, very easy after the first time, we have it down to about 15 minutes now.
Bell tents are brilliant, get one with a ground sheet, send it to the really intresting tent company and get a porch put on, kevin will sort you out.
or check out their geo domes. www.thereallyinterestingtentcompany.co.uk
Canvas is heavy, but if you are not planning on hiking, will outlast the children,
The canvas poly tunnel (bear lake), is brilliant in high winds (we are always last tent standing(we camp on cliff tops ), and rain, cool in the hot sun, and warm at night, really nice to live in, I always take it by choice, it makes a huge difference to comfort.
with canvas you do need to make sure it is totally bone dry before you store it, but oh so worth it.
We just got a Vango Mira 500 from Decathlon and it seems ideal for us. It is a good idea to go and see some in the flesh to get a feel for what would suit you. We went to GO-Outdoors which had loads of tents up and spent time wandering in an rout of them to see what we thought.
We have the Vango Venture 500, which is good for 2 adults, 2 dc and 2 (medium sized) dogs. DP is tall, but this was ok for him. However, we were not looking for a tent for long holidays, more for short weekend breaks, which might make a big difference.
Ours has 2 sleeping compartments, plus a reasonable living compartment, which is large enough for 2 dog travel crates whilst still leaving space for sitting etc.
I love introducing the dc to the joys of camping!
www.decathlon.co.uk/icarus-600-family-tent-id_8284171.html This looks a reasonable budget choice for £200. Living area + 2 bedrooms & double skinned for British weather. It's a 6 man tent, which leaves space for you to put things in the sleeping areas.
We have the vango icarus 600, like bochead linked. It suits us really well, easy to put up, and a good size living area. There aren't separate sleeping areas, but there is a dividing curtain. We had heavy rain and wind once, and we stayed warm and dry.
Tunnel tents are generally much easier to put up - don't forget that you might be doing this in wind and rain.
Get one with a sewn in ground sheet - less chance of water coming in and it is much warmer as you don't have the wind blowing in around your feet.
Pay attention to the sleeping bit. Go for one which give you a double skin in this area, helps with keeping warm.
I was going to suggest an Icarus 600, too. One big sleeping space for now, or a divider for when the DC are a bit older. And then when they are older still, a little individual tent next door - that's what DS likes.
Vango are good tents, very weatherproof, last a long time. IMO for w/e campng a tent which is quick and simple to put up and strike is essential, and the Icarus can be folded and pitched 'as one' - with the inner left in. 3 easy poles - a doddle.
If you find you need more space as you grow and extend you can get a canopy porch extension for the Icarus.
Very soon Decathlon and other places should start putting tents up so you can walk into them.
We bought an Outwell Nevada M a couple of years ago after seeing a friend's. It was a good price- we looked out for offers and then got Go Outdoors to price match + 10%. It's big and light and can be extended with the canopy. It's been a really good beginner family tent for us and I think we'll be using it for years.
I would say go for the Icarus 500/600. You can do a few camping trips in that and decide when you've seen other peoples set ups what you really want.
If you're happy with the Icarus, all well and good. If not you can use the Icarus as a weekend tent and get another for longer trips (once you realise that one tent is just not enough )
I'd take a look at ukcampsite website and look at the photos people have posted of their set ups and see if you think it will work for your family.
5m canvas bell tent? It's easy and quick to pitch with one pole and an A frame for the door, we pitch ours in ten minutes, it's big enough for 4 of us, plus 3 dogs and a wood burning stove.
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