Current Retail: $259.95
Historic Range: $129.93-$259.95
Reviewers Paid: $77.00
Great idea for a lightweight shelter for cot sleepers.
- Flexible design works with other brands of cot
- Simple and elegant design can be used with or without the fly
- Small packed size and lightweight
- The whole tent is elevated off the ground atop the cot, so uneven or wet ground is not a problem
- Tight on headroom
- Can't be used without the cot
- Wind could be its downfall
This is a very well designed and constructed piece of gear. It is simple to set up and very compact when packed. It is light enough to pack in with you if you are so inclined.
The inner screen tent can be set up without the fly for protection from bugs with great ventilation. The mesh screen continues around the bottom of the tent to rest on the surface of the cot and provide a fully enclosed space. The fly is designed to work only with the inner screen layer. It comes in a standard tent bag, with separate smaller bags for the hubbed and shock-corded pole(s) and four stakes.
The cot tent is sold separately from the Therm-a-Rest Luxury Lite Cot it is designed for, but I've confirmed that the Large/XL size will fit on and work just fine with the TravelChair Sleeprite Cot and the regular-sized Camptime Roll-a-Cots that I already own.
The tent cot is designed so that it essentially sits on top of the cot and then secures around the corners with straps that can be tightened. There are additional elastic loops down the side that are specifically designed for the LuxuryLite, but those aren't essential to the setup in any way. The Camptime is quite a bit higher off the ground, so additional cordage will likely be needed to extend the corner tie-down points for the fly down to the ground.
The inner screen tent is the same as the bug shelter that can be purchased sans-fly, and I see on Therm-a-Rest's website that the fly can now be purchased to add on to your existing bug shelter. The mesh is dark color and has a zipper fly with two cars so that it can be unzipped either direction. It attaches securely to the arch pole with six plastic clips that snap in place. A mesh pocket for personal items is sewn into the inner wall. Sewn-in fabric loops are provided in the interior to hang lights or other small items, but they will infringe on your headroom.
The design seems to work well with enough headroom to sit up and enough length to stretch out on the cot (I'm just under 5'10"), but it is kind of odd in appearance as it is quite tall with unusable narrow space above the door opening. It is shaped like a sail, and should probably always be set up lengthwise to prevailing winds to avoid becoming an actual sail.
Similar headroom could have been obtained with a somewhat shorter tent overall with the headroom provided by a crossbar to widen the tent at the top, but some of the elegant simplicity of the design would have been sacrificed.
So far I've only just received this and tested it at home with my various cots, but it appears to be good quality stuff and I look forward to testing it in the field soon. I had only seen this tent online at various retailers prior to purchase, but I decided to take a chance on it fitting the cots I already had when I saw the very low price being offered on Amazon. I was a bit concerned about it being a counterfeit shipped from Asia (who really knows?), but it showed up in just a couple of days from Seattle and fully appears to be the genuine article.
For the price I got it for, it is an incredible bargain. I intend to use it with my roll-a-cot to sleep on my raft, and for short weekend backpacking trips with the Sleeprite cot. At under 3 pounds, adding the 6 pound cot won't be ultralight by any means, but very doable for the weekend trips I tent to take, and much lighter than taking the cot with my standard tents as I am prone to do.
I will post an update with photos after I have tried it out in the various intended ways.
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $77 from Amazon