Headed for the Mountains
Join Date: May 2014
Location: Vancouver Island, BC, Canada.
Tents for family (car) camping
As I get my family involved more in (car) camping, I'm realizing that decent large tents are still very pricey, and very hard to find.
Last night I tested out a Woods tent in the backyard. In theory it looked decent, the roof was nice and sloped, and it had a great awning at the front including a rain gutter in the design. The side walls weren't quite covered by the fly but overall it looked like it should have been waterproof.
Unfortunately what looked like a decent design (if made of rigid material) utterly failed due to the stretch in the fabric. A little bit of water on roof and awning made enough of a bulge in 3 places that more gathered, and the fabric stretched instead of letting it run off, so that soon I had about 50+L of water sitting on my tent. There were also a few puddles inside in the morning, but that was a few too many. As an owner of tarptents I know the importance of tension when setting up a tent, and it wasn't sloppy pitching that allowed this to happen.
I knew big box store tents sucked, but until now didn't fully realize how badly. Mine is now labelled a TSO - Tent Shaped Object, because as a tent with west coast rain it fails horribly. Luckily I didn't spend money on it, getting it from relatives who trailer camp now, and it'll still be quite usable with a decent tarp and some trees.
Are there any large tent designs that actually work well in the rain, without having to spend a ton of money?