You’ve decided it’s time to camp. Maybe you are taking the whole family and looking forward to creating wonderful memories around a campfire. Maybe you are planning a backpacking trip to commune with nature. Your first camping gear purchase will likely be your tent. So it becomes very important for you make a good camping tent selection.
The first questions you need to answer when shopping for a tent are:
• How many people will be sleeping in the tent?
• What time of year will you be camping? What weather conditions do you expect?
• What type of camping will you do? Are you going to take the family to a public campground or are you planning a backpacking trip into the wilds?
There is a dizzying array of tents available, but your answers to these questions will help narrow down your choices.
a) How Many People Are Going To Sleep In The Tent?
Tents are usually labeled by how many people they will sleep, but beware; what a tent manufacturer means by “sleeps four” is not what most people would consider comfortable. The sleeping size of a tent does not include extra room for gear, moving around or spreading out; it refers only to how many sleeping bags will fit inside. Unless you plan on sleeping packed in like sardines, look for a tent that is sized for at least two more people than you will actually have. So if you are a family of four, a tent that is sized to sleep six should be sufficient. This will allow room for your gear as well as sleeping bags spaced comfortably.
b) What Time Of The Year Are You Going Camping?
Will you need a tent that can stand up to wind, snow and rain? Or are you merely looking for light protection from balmy summer nights? Tents are broken down into categories by the weather conditions they are meant to withstand.
c) Going Camping In All Seasons But Winter?
Get a three-season tent. Three-season outdoor camping tents are designed for camping in the spring, summer or fall. These are fairly lightweight tents that can withstand light or moderate wind and a few inches of snow. They commonly have a rain fly or cover that will extend to the ground in case of rain. Most three-season tents have vestibules or small entryways that are great for leaving your dirty hiking boots or wet clothes. They have plenty of vents or skylights for circulation and come with sturdy, lightweight poles.
d) Only Going Camping In The Summer?
Opt for a warm-weather or summer tent. Beach shade tents are mostly mesh and are useful for camping in hot, humid climates or for use as an eating or gathering area. They have plenty of ventilation and are good for keeping away flying insects.
e) Bringing A Big Family With You?
Check out a family tent. Camping Family tents are three-season tents designed for family car camping. Family tents are large, often with separate rooms inside, a large vestibule area and multiple doors. They are great for use on a public campground or anywhere you will pull the car right up to your campsite. These are heavy tents, definitely not for carrying a long distance.
Camping is a great experience for a family to share, a wonderful way to get away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life and just plain fun. Choosing the right tent for your home-away-from-home makes it even better.