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Family Camping Tent Recommendations

2:01 p.m. on May 1, 2002 (EDT)
(Guest)

While I have done a great deal of backpacking and have my favorites among 1 - 2 person size tents (Clip Flashlight, Arch Rival), I am currently in the market for a larger 3 season tent for our family of five. We also take out terrier with us along with a small portable cage for him to sleep in. He feels very secure in this and keeps quieter at night. The cage just fits in the vestibule of our Eureka Timberline 4 person tent.

We have been using a four person Timberline tent for the past five years, but we really need something larger. I have been looking at two Eureka models: the Equinox 6 (with vestibule) and the Lodge. Both can accomodate the dog cage; in the vestibule of the Equinox or the screen room of the Lodge. While my wife likes the screen room of the Lodge, I am worried that the relatively shorter rain fly will not give enough protection in inclement weather while still allowing the windows to be open for ventilation. The Equinox, with it's brimmed fly over the windows, looks to be more storm proof.

Any suggestions or opinions/experiences on these models or others is greatly sppreciated.

Thank you!

5:41 a.m. on May 2, 2002 (EDT)
(Guest)

Vince,

When regular camping I use a large cabin style tent (11' x 16') and love it! I have a kitchen area, sitting area and a bedroom. We use cots for sleeping and store our gear under them - keeps things nice and tidy.

Usually I also use a tarp over the entire tent. This keeps any rain off and helps keep the tent cooler in hot weather. I use a tarp large enough to hang over the front several feet, which makes a great porch. If it is raining when we get ready to pack up and leave we back the truck under the tarp and load everything out of the rain, even take down the tent without getting soaked. The tarp is the last thing to take down (here's where you get soaked)!Ha. Ha.

Eureka is a good brand. I don't think you'll go wrong there.

Good camping to you.

10:55 a.m. on May 2, 2002 (EDT)
(Guest)

a.k.a. Old and slow, Sheldon Miller

I got an Equinox this spring. We had it out this past weekend in a high wind, heavy rain, thunderstorm. It was snug and dry. The hexagonal shape makes the internal space a little harder to organize but it did shed wind like Eureka says it is supposed to.

12:39 a.m. on May 6, 2002 (EDT)
(Guest)

How will this tent be primarily used? Backpacking or car camping? The Equinox weighs nearly 20 lbs., while the Lodge weighs nearly 30 lbs..

I don't know much about the Lodge, because I didn't look past the weight. However, I have considered the Equinox and feel that it is a very good tent. It's construction and materials seem outstanding. 87 sq/ft of floor space should give your family pretty good room. The tent is tall enough for even dad to stand in, yet the design will probably allow the tent to shed wind fairly well. On the other hand, I think this tent also has a couple of drawbacks. There is only one door for five (or six pretty crowed) people, and the vestibule is optional, but not included. To me, the lack of a vestibule (unless you buy it) and the weight make this tent questionable for backpacking.

If your focus will lean more toward backpacking, you might want to think about Sierra Design's Mondo 5 CD. It was discontinued last year, but can still be found at one or two places. It is not as tall as the Equinox, but has more available floor space (82 sq/ft floor + 20 sq/ft vestibule) and weighs about 6.5 lbs. less. Another plus is that it can be fastpacked with fly, poles, and ground sheet for just under 8 lbs.. All that being said, the Mondo 5 will cost more than the Equinox, however buying the optional vestibule for the Equinox would cut down that gap (and add even more weight).

Just my two cents.

1:32 p.m. on May 6, 2002 (EDT)
(Guest)

Quote:

While I have done a great deal of backpacking and have my favorites among 1 - 2 person size tents (Clip Flashlight, Arch Rival), I am currently in the market for a larger 3 season tent for our family of five. We also take out terrier with us along with a small portable cage for him to sleep in. He feels very secure in this and keeps quieter at night. The cage just fits in the vestibule of our Eureka Timberline 4 person tent.

We have been using a four person Timberline tent for the past five years, but we really need something larger. I have been looking at two Eureka models: the Equinox 6 (with vestibule) and the Lodge. Both can accomodate the dog cage; in the vestibule of the Equinox or the screen room of the Lodge. While my wife likes the screen room of the Lodge, I am worried that the relatively shorter rain fly will not give enough protection in inclement weather while still allowing the windows to be open for ventilation. The Equinox, with it's brimmed fly over the windows, looks to be more storm proof.

Any suggestions or opinions/experiences on these models or others is greatly sppreciated.

Thank you!


Thanks for the feedback. The intened use of the tent is for family car camping - so weight is not a factor. (Besides, the kids are too young for our backpacking adventures!).

I have always liked the Equinox because of it's wind-shedding design and full rainfly. We camp 3/12 seasons and can encounter severe weather. The wife likes to Lodge due to it's screen room, but I worry about the relatively short rainfly and upright design.

Also, I am NOT a fan of fiberglass poles and would not consider tents using the same.

6:03 p.m. on May 6, 2002 (EDT)
(Guest)

Re: Family Camping Tent Recommendations - REI?

Vince:
Since you mentioned 3+ seasons, I will suggest the REI Basecamp 4 or 6 tent. They have full fly coverage and are quite well made. We have the 6 and I have used it in the snow with good success. Not expensive, aluminum poles.
Hope that helps,
- Tramper Al.

Quote:

While I have done a great deal of backpacking and have my favorites among 1 - 2 person size tents (Clip Flashlight, Arch Rival), I am currently in the market for a larger 3 season tent for our family of five. We also take out terrier with us along with a small portable cage for him to sleep in. He feels very secure in this and keeps quieter at night. The cage just fits in the vestibule of our Eureka Timberline 4 person tent.

We have been using a four person Timberline tent for the past five years, but we really need something larger. I have been looking at two Eureka models: the Equinox 6 (with vestibule) and the Lodge. Both can accomodate the dog cage; in the vestibule of the Equinox or the screen room of the Lodge. While my wife likes the screen room of the Lodge, I am worried that the relatively shorter rain fly will not give enough protection in inclement weather while still allowing the windows to be open for ventilation. The Equinox, with it's brimmed fly over the windows, looks to be more storm proof.

Any suggestions or opinions/experiences on these models or others is greatly sppreciated.

Thank you!

10:32 a.m. on May 7, 2002 (EDT)
(Guest)

Quote:

While I have done a great deal of backpacking and have my favorites among 1 - 2 person size tents (Clip Flashlight, Arch Rival), I am currently in the market for a larger 3 season tent for our family of five. We also take out terrier with us along with a small portable cage for him to sleep in. He feels very secure in this and keeps quieter at night. The cage just fits in the vestibule of our Eureka Timberline 4 person tent.

We have been using a four person Timberline tent for the past five years, but we really need something larger. I have been looking at two Eureka models: the Equinox 6 (with vestibule) and the Lodge. Both can accomodate the dog cage; in the vestibule of the Equinox or the screen room of the Lodge. While my wife likes the screen room of the Lodge, I am worried that the relatively shorter rain fly will not give enough protection in inclement weather while still allowing the windows to be open for ventilation. The Equinox, with it's brimmed fly over the windows, looks to be more storm proof.

Any suggestions or opinions/experiences on these models or others is greatly sppreciated.

Thank you!

Thank you all for some good suggestions! I am trying to steer my wife away from the Lodge due to the short rainfly. I am narrowing it down to the REI Camp Dome 6 and the Equinox 6. Does anyone have experience with the Kelty Mantra 7 tent? It looks very sturdy and weather-proof.

Thank you!

12:33 p.m. on August 15, 2002 (EDT)
(Guest)

Re: Family Camping Tent Recommendations - REI?

Quote:

Al,

we have the REI basecamp 4 and the design is great. The only thing that worries me is that the aluminium poles seem to be to weak for the bending radius. All of them are severely bent already. I replaced them already once, but the new ones look the same after one trip. My concern is that one of them breaks at the beginning of a 2 week trip.... One guy from REI mentioned to me that REI cose the wrong material for the manufacturing. Any comments or experience? Pls use email

Volker


Quote:

Vince:
Since you mentioned 3+ seasons, I will suggest the REI Basecamp 4 or 6 tent. They have full fly coverage and are quite well made. We have the 6 and I have used it in the snow with good success. Not expensive, aluminum poles.
Hope that helps,
- Tramper Al.

Quote:

While I have done a great deal of backpacking and have my favorites among 1 - 2 person size tents (Clip Flashlight, Arch Rival), I am currently in the market for a larger 3 season tent for our family of five. We also take out terrier with us along with a small portable cage for him to sleep in. He feels very secure in this and keeps quieter at night. The cage just fits in the vestibule of our Eureka Timberline 4 person tent.

We have been using a four person Timberline tent for the past five years, but we really need something larger. I have been looking at two Eureka models: the Equinox 6 (with vestibule) and the Lodge. Both can accomodate the dog cage; in the vestibule of the Equinox or the screen room of the Lodge. While my wife likes the screen room of the Lodge, I am worried that the relatively shorter rain fly will not give enough protection in inclement weather while still allowing the windows to be open for ventilation. The Equinox, with it's brimmed fly over the windows, looks to be more storm proof.

Any suggestions or opinions/experiences on these models or others is greatly sppreciated.

Thank you!

April 23, 2014
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