Viewing 27 posts - 1 through 27 (of 27 total)
  • Which four person tent?
  • woodlikesbikes
    Full Member

    Decide we’re going to do some camping. I’m looking for something well made that will last for for 4 people.
    I’ve looked at the usual high street options, all of which seem to be huge things with a living room so people can move half the kitchen into them.

    I’ve never seen Ray Mears lugging a portable fridge, oven and fold up piano.
    I’d rather buy a better, but smaller tent that will last.
    Do well made, but more compact tents for four people exist? I saw a mountaineering one from from North Face but that was £850. Which is a bit too much for weekend trips.

    YoKaiser
    Free Member

    Are you thinking of walking or cycling with it? If not I’d go big, something to be said for being able to stand up. And if it was for four actual people of look at 6 man.

    convert
    Full Member

    Agreed – what’s it for?

    I’ll put it like this – I own a Nordisk Lofoten 1 – google it – I really don’t mind small when needs must! But if it was car camping I’d be happy to go a little bigger than minimal. I think we are now through peak hipster so it’s probably OK to say it but the romantic in me would quite fancy one of these canvas round/bell tents with a little wood stove if I was in the market for a larger static/car transported tents. Hopelessly impractical and poor value for money in comparison to a eurohike/colman big nylon commercial jobbie I’d imagine, but still appeals.

    If not car camping – what’s it for?

    dknwhy
    Full Member

    I’d suggest popping to Decathlon and take a look. Their warranties are pretty good so you’ll be covered.
    As above, 4 person is quite small when you consider storage and living space. Depends what you want it for?
    What we use for a quick weekend break where we’ll be eating out, is very different to a week in the lakes where it could be raining for several days.

    montgomery
    Full Member

    https://www.backpackinglight.co.uk/shelters-3/megahorn-xl-8-person.html

    I use a smaller tipi tent by the same company and like it.

    the-muffin-man
    Full Member

    I’d rather buy a better, but smaller tent that will last.

    Big tents can be well-made and last too.

    If it’s for car camping for more than a night or two I’m not sure why you’d make life harder by squeezing into a little tent.

    intheborders
    Free Member

    Are you wanting to carry it or just get it out of the back of a car?

    Decide this first.

    Oh, and nothing better than sat in a quality tent in a storm watching other folks trying to lasso down their cheap tents 🙂

    If it’s for car camping, recommend one of these – quite popular so you should be able to find a s/h one. We collectively bought one years ago, makes a brilliant base. Only downsides are sheer weight/bulk and that it really takes 2 adults to put up.

    https://www.ukcampsite.co.uk/tents/p/Wild-Country-Homestead-5/548

    simon_g
    Full Member

    Bought one of these recently for weekend trips: https://www.canvastentshop.co.uk/4m-bell-tent-lite.html

    Bell tent but oxford (nylon) so dries faster, packs down smaller and won’t ruin your back getting it out of the car. Goes up quick, enough room inside for 4 to sleep and have a bit of storage/relaxing space without being a massive tunnel tent (which we do have for proper holidays).

    Else I’d probably have gone for this: https://www.decathlon.co.uk/p/4-person-blackout-air-tent-air-seconds-4-1xl-fresh-black/_/R-p-302837?mc=8648382&c=BEIGE

    Or the Berghaus Air 6 for vis-a-vis style.

    woodlikesbikes
    Full Member

    Definitely car camping. And most like for 2 nights, 3 at the most. As a general rule we’re a minimalist family.
    Waterproofness and not falling done in a storm is a priority over lots of space.

    Pieface
    Full Member

    We’ve got one of the Decathlon Air Seconds Black-outs as posted above, and I must say I’m really impressed with the quality of materials and attention to design detail for the price, way better than most of the stuff Vango churn out for twice the price. THe only downside is that the blackout lining makes it tricky to find things during the day, but the benefits are worth it when camping with a dog and small child.

    In hindsight I should have gone for the 4 person tent with the different configuration https://www.decathlon.co.uk/p/4-person-blackout-air-tent-air-seconds-4-2xl-fresh-black/_/R-p-157654?mc=8572950&c=BEIGE as our daughter will soon be wanting her own room.

    You can buy an awning which works with both modesl, we’ll probably get one as it gives you extra shade / weather protection when its foul. https://www.decathlon.co.uk/p/universal-tent-awning-for-quechua-tents-arpenaz-fresh/_/R-p-334065?mc=8648418

    Alternatively you could try an event shelter and a number of smaller tents all with their porches opening in to the event shelter, but think that this would only work if you could get a really snug overlap between the tents / shelter. Also you lose out on the extra headroom for getting changed, but if you’ve already got the smaller tents this could be an option, but you may get charged extra for having more tents and a gazebo, as opposed to one large tent.

    matt_outandabout
    Full Member

    Waterproofness and not falling done in a storm is a priority over lots of space.

    I would agree – but then I don’t put a tent on a site with a hundred others for a week. We use it on riverbanks, occasional night elsewhere. Although the last two years we haven’t done much. hmmm.

    Anyhow, we have had:

    Secondhand Vaude given to us from here – modern version is a Badawi. We got it as ‘about dead’, but used it for a good few nights as part of our BB’s work for summer camps etc. Excellent height, very stable and waterproof, but small enough to manage as one person. https://www.addnature.co.uk/vaude-badawi-4p-tent-M134449.html

    We have tipi’s at work – they are teh shizzle, if an acquired taste. One room. So stable and easy shedding of weather. https://www.helsport.com/en/tents-and-shelters/base-camping/varanger-4-6-camp-outer-tent-incl.-pole/

    stumpy01
    Full Member

    I would say that a 4-person tent is fine at providing adequate space for 4 people to shelter inside, but no more.
    Once you add a few bags & chairs, perhaps a table & coolbox it can all get a bit cramped.

    It’s fine if you are backpacking & want to keep things to a minimum, but if you are car camping I would look at something a bit bigger; probably more like a 6-man.
    It’s good to have some kind of ‘canopy’ space as well, so definitely worth seeing if you can find one that has an attached canopy, or a separate one you can buy and add on to it.
    It makes it much nicer as you can still sit outside with the front door open while it’s (inevitably) raining), whereas without any sort of canopy you end up shut inside.

    If you have a Go Outdoors nearby, it would definitely be worth a trip there. They generally have a decent range of tents set-up & you can spend plenty of time looking at options.

    Regarding the quality – there are good & bad tents available at every size. Just pay attention to reviews & stick to the bigger named brands if you want something that will probably last – Vango, Khyam, Outwell etc…..although saying that, my Sister has a Hi-Gear tent from Go Outdoors that must be 10 years old now and still is in good nick.

    Pieface
    Full Member

    There’s also the Alpkit tents that appealed to me, but when I was in the market these tents were brand new and the website had no information about the tents, aslo no blackout lining –

    Axiom

    And this is lovely, albeit expensive –

    Heksa

    My brother has one of these, which is good, but not sure its good VFM –

    https://www.vaude.com/en-GB/Equipment/Tents/Family-Tents/Badawi-Long-6-Persons-Family-Tent?number=157765050

    tuboflard
    Full Member

    I’ve got the MSR Habitude 6 but they do a 4 person equivalent too. It’s really well put together, super roomy, light to lug about and can pitch single handed. Nice review of it here;

    https://www.ukclimbing.com/gear/camping/tents+bivvys/msr_habitude_6_tent-12169

    I got mine in a sale, not sure I’d pay RRP but might be able to pick one up cheap.

    Gunz
    Full Member

    Vango. Not a canvas teepee unless you like transporting and drying out a five ton lump of material.

    PMK2060
    Full Member

    We have just bought a ‘Vango Icarus 500 Deluxe Family Tent, which is a 5 person tent. They are currently selling for £229.00 on Go Outdoors.

    There is a sleeping compartment meant for 3 people but probably only suitable for 2 adults. The other sleeping compartment would be fine for 2 children.

    We will be using this for the first time on Friday. However, based on a garden trial run it seems ideal for us as it has decent living space but is not so big that it takes 2 hours to put up and take down.

    If the weekend is a disaster I will sell it to you for a decent price :).

    This is  technically a 4 person tent (sleeps 2 comfortably, but will fit 4). Stood up to storms at our local festival, when all the pole tents were dying a miserable death (along with the occupants)

    [url=https://www.flickr.com/gp/85252658@N05/4Wm74f]2017-08-09_03-17-52[/url] by davetheblade, on Flickr

    [url=https://www.flickr.com/gp/85252658@N05/2Agj4e]P7270003[/url] by davetheblade, on Flickr

    [url=https://www.flickr.com/gp/85252658@N05/v3V912]P7270004[/url] by davetheblade, on Flickr

    Also – erected in 10 mins and sat drinking a beer, whilst all around me were swearing at tent poles

    woodlikesbikes
    Full Member

    I’ve concluded that there are two types of camping: one with a simple tent in the woods and the other where you erect a mini version of your house in a field. Both of which are perfectly acceptable, just depends on what you like. Were closer to the former.

    Don’t need space for tables, chairs, or fridges. I’ve actually ordered a Vango Icarus 500, but then saw a few YouTube videos and think it’s far too big.

    The MSR and the axiom look like the sort of thing we’re after.

    pictonroad
    Full Member

    Decathlon 4 person airfresh blackout with the rooms at each end is a fantastic tent for the purpose you’ve described. We love ours, loads of my friends have bought one, not heard any bad feedback from any of them.

    We pair it with a coleman shelter for a comprehensive but reasonably minimalist set up.

    TheBrick
    Free Member

    Don’t need space for tables, chairs, or fridges. I

    This is how we camp but with a family we still use a decathlon 4 man tent similar (but different layouts to the above). Room for bags and to stand up make a life easy. You can’t get kids to be ultra effecient in 4 man backpacking tent in the wet

    CountZero
    Full Member

    I’ve got the same AirSeconds inflatable – twenty minutes from finding a decent spot to sitting outside watching lots of other people struggling with poles, etc taking three times as long. Bugger principles, give me ease and quickness of setup every time!

    matt_outandabout
    Full Member

    Not a canvas teepee unless you like transporting and drying out a five ton lump of material.

    Agreed.
    That is why our teepee’s at work are nylon.

    Our one berth too small tent was bought for exactly your brief – but for 2 or 3 of us to have space while able to carry in canoe. I give you the ‘handsome’ Vango Galaxy 300.

    convert
    Full Member

    Any merit in a couple of 2 mans and a tarp for an outdoor communal space? Maybe a proper 2 man hiking for the kids and a 3 man or something a tiny bit large for the parents. Flexibility of layout depending on the campsite and ground conditions (if you were to camp wilder in the future it is often easier to find two small suitable footprints than one large one), ability to give the kids a bit of independence (maybe even camping a short distance away from you depending on location), a bit more of a ‘proper’ camping feel, capacity to take only one element away if it’s only 2 of you in the future, as smaller structures maybe more storm proof (not too sure this is true).

    Not sure if bigger commercial campsites would shaft you for fees for 2 tents and a tarp in comparison to a big family jobbie.

    Yak
    Full Member

    I’ve been through this and am done on big family tents – the sort that fill the boot. Our kids don’t need that sort of space any more, and the last one got destroyed in a storm anyway.
    So for the last few years we have been using a bergans wiglo 4lt. Reasonably small pack size, good in bad weather and vents well. Plenty of room for 4.

    woodlikesbikes
    Full Member

    Thanks to @tuboflard we spent first weekend in an MSR Habitude 6 – perfect! Took 15 minutes to set up, loads of space, pretty cool in the morning thanks to ventilation and took about 20 minutes to pack up.

    We also got all the stuff in the boot of car in contrast to three sets of friends who all had to take two cars too get everything in!!

    Kryton57
    Full Member

    I have the older 4 person version of one of these I’m not using: https://www.vango.co.uk/gb/camping-equipment/1316-odyssey-500.html Folds up into a holdall sized back and doesn’t take up much room in the car and about 15 mins to put up.

    Used it for a few weekend bike trips, needs a couple of the peg-loops repairing and a new set of pegs but other than that the OP/someone can have it for free.

    tuboflard
    Full Member

    👍 @woodlikesbikes we were camping in ours over the weekend too, set it up single handed in about the same time, as you say loads of room and internal storage along with being cool enough with the mesh and massive porch open. Glad you like it!

Viewing 27 posts - 1 through 27 (of 27 total)

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