So I've fallen in love with the Bear Lake 6 (Long)

(14 Posts)
poppyboo Thu 03-Jun-10 19:26:09

We went to check it out today and it looked so nice that now I just really want it! And i don't even know if we can fit it in the car, the packs were pretty big and very heavy but the tent pitched just looked so roomy and comfortable. I was comparing it to Outwell Montana 6 and in the warm weather (it was about 21 degrees) it felt much more comfortable to be it then the Montana. I could have sat comfortably inside the BL6 but I couldn't have sat inside the M6 it was like an oven in there...

It was £799 so we can't afford that. We have a Vango at the moment so we were going to get a tent straight away but now we are tempted to wait and see if the BL6 drops in price in the winter (thats if we find out it will fit in our car that is and still leave a bit of room for other essentials) Does anyone know if it is likely to drop in price and if so probably how much by? I know camping is getting very popular now so maybe the price drops won't be so big during the winter months.................

Has anyone else ever just fell in love with a tent????

Also, does anyone own the BL6? Is it a nightmare to pack if you leave camp and it's been raining? Also is it a nightmare to dry/air it once you get home? Would I be able to drape it over the landing banister or would it need more room then that?

Sorry for this being so long blush

JackiePaper Thu 03-Jun-10 22:17:58

we have a wolf lake 7 and i love it
yes it is huge, yes it weighs a ton and yes it would be a bugger to dry - you couldn't really put it over the banister, too big and heavy.

tbh we've never packed it up wet - we've just been away in it sat to wed, it rained tues night but after an hour or so in the sun on wed morning it was bone dry - they dry much quicker than nylon tents.

It's so so lovely though, much cooler in the heat and also much darker - which means you don't wake up so early and the kids go to sleep easier of a night.

It takes up about half of our boot - ford focus estate - we manage to get all our camping crap and the tent and me and dh and 2 kids in though, just!!

we bought ours in the winter and got it at a much cheaper price as they clear out the previous seasons version in time for the new one coming out in the spring. We bought ours in feb 2009 - it is the 2008 version - only difference was the colour of the curtains - and paid 750 rather than £1000.

get one - you will love it grin

poppyboo Fri 04-Jun-10 16:17:53

Jackie, thanks for your reply, its really good to have the advice! I think we are definately going to wait now, we just loved it so much and want a tent that will last us a few years and be comfortable as possible. The heat and darkness issues are very important to me, I hate feeling hot and stuffy...and at home the children's bedrooms are blacked out for them to sleep so we wanted to find a tent which will help the children get to sleep. I know it won't be really dark but I had heard that they are darker then a Nylon tent, so IMO anything will help!
Now we just need to figure out if we cram it in the car! A trailer isn't an option sad
Fingers crossed!

Milliways Sat 05-Jun-10 17:52:01

For a comfy 6 man tent I would recommend this Khyam Harewood. It has the rapidex system so no pole threading etc - just shake & snap it up in mins. Our friends have one. It does take up a lot of room due to the way the poles are built in, but it is very solid/waterproof eetc and gets great reviews.

3rdnparty Sun 06-Jun-10 21:00:55

poppyboo- we got bear lake 4 as only 3 of us and i love it - keep an eye on sites like somerset camping and also places that do a price match...like go outdoors we saved over £100 that way still a lot but cheaper than a week in a cottage smile and it is so sturdy and lovely grin even dh says best thing we have spent money on...

Smithagain Sun 06-Jun-10 22:25:12

I have to be honest and say that I doubt the Bear Lake 6 will come down in price. It's a very lovely tent and rightly popular.

We went through a similar process last year, and ended up investing in a Wolf Lake 5, which is very similar and has the same high comfort factor in hot weather. In fact, were it not for the fact we visited the outdoor showroom on a blisteringly hot day, we might never have gone down this rather expensive route. Like you, we fell in love.

We're looking at it as a long term investment - we fully expect to use this tent for as long as we carry on camping. It's very well made, has all the features we want, is comfortable and spacious and is made to last. It's our first tent, so we are looking at it as still being a lot cheaper than carrying on holidaying in self-catering cottages!

Regarding bulk - yes it is very bulky indeed when packed. We have ended up buying a trailer, which makes life managable - but was obviously yet more expense. Like I said, we are in this for the long haul, so we think it's worth it.

We have had to pack it up wet once. We just have enough space to pitch it in the garden, if we move the girls' climbing frame first. I don't think it would be feasible to dry it indoors - there is a LOT of canvas. And you do need to be able to get it properly dry - the material needs looking after and is liable to rot if stored damp. And you really don't want that to happen once that £800 has been spent!

Don't know if that's been helpful or not. If you can stretch to it, pack it and pitch it in the garden, definitely go for it. You won't regret it. But do go into it with your eyes open!

tootootired Thu 10-Jun-10 13:14:11

We also have a Wolf Lake 5, its a great tent but you cannot get it with 4 passengers in a normal car unless you leave out clothes or something! We put extra on the roof, or borrow a van grin. But this is our holidays for the next 10 years so it had to be good.

We also dry it on climbing frame!

The other good thing about that style, is the big windows - if the weather is wet, windy or midgy you can hide out inside but still have light and a view.

Remember most tents have side doors you can open up to get a through draught. We have not yet had good enough camping weather to have the too-hot problem!

poppyboo Thu 10-Jun-10 13:45:29

Thank you all for your replies!
I think we might go to Go Outdoors and ask one of the staff if they could try putting it in our boot and see how much room is left. We were planning on going compact with our other equipment if it meant we could cram the tent into our car. (A trailer definately is not an option) We were going to use compact self inflating mats, sleeping bags over duvets, not use a camping table just eat off laps (hmm that will be interesting) that sort of thing and just really think about what we want to take. We would rather have less stuff but be in the tent that would suit us best as a family. Maybe I'm being unrealistic though...

DreadfulSpiller Thu 28-May-15 10:04:28

Apologies for reviving old thread, my phone won't let me start a new thread?!
After much deliberation we have decided to buy the BL 6. We are a family of 4 (dd(7) and dd(2).
Would any owners of the tent recommend we get the extension? It seems enormous and even more money! The best price we can find is £275. I'm worried about shade and cooking etc.
We're thinking that of using tent as is and getting a decent windbreak to cook etc. well be in the Vendee and Dordogne for its main use this yr, along with at least one wkend in the UK. Any advice much appreciated!

Paddington Thu 11-Jun-15 17:11:43

We have the BL 2012 model and love it. We use it on camping holidays in southern France every summer. We bought the extension too and have found it very useful and well worth the money. We put the table under the extension for shade and I cook under it too. Also great on the rare occasions we get rain.

We are a family of 4 and are renowned for filling every inch of space in our car (VW Passat estate) with camping gear, board games, etc but don't consider ourselves glam pets. grin

Elizabeth267 Thu 11-Jun-15 22:07:14

Paddington you sound like us! But I think even the Passat's mahoosive boot and roof is reaching saturation and a trailer is needed! I don't know how we will make it le Vendee this summer without serious pins and needles setting in!

Kahlua4me Fri 12-Jun-15 06:57:12

We have had our Bear Lake 6 for about 5 years now and it is so so lovely! I can't wait to be back in it again. Perfect tent for France.

We don't have the extension but bought an Outwell tarp instead. Have found that very useful as it can be put on whichever side we need to depending on the size and shape of the pitch. We have a Landrover so often attach it to the side of our Landy as a windbreak.

DreadfulSpiller Fri 12-Jun-15 08:02:56

Many thanks all, can't wait to get camping in it now!

HettyD Sat 27-Jun-15 20:23:46

Rather than extension can I suggest a simple tarp? Comes with a pole (nice ma in go outdoors found us a second random pole which helps!!) and guys, it can go over doorway, be cooking shelter, shade etc. versatile and packs up smaller than a chair!!

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