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Thread: Picking the right Tent

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    Administrator Trailace's Avatar
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    Dec 2005
    Houston, TX

    Question Picking the right Tent

    Types of Tents
    • 3-Season - These tents are usually just right for motorcycling as they will perform well in hot, cold, windy and/or wet conditions.
    • 4-Season - These tents are typically overkill when it comes to motorcycling since you are less likely to be riding in the blizzard-like conditions that require such a tent.
    • Convertible - These tents allow the conversion from 4-Season to 3-Season tents by omitting poles and sections allowing for more ventilation - they are typically more expensive.
    How Big?
    • The average sized person will appreciate the extra room allowed by getting a 2-person tent. The 2 person tents don't pack much larger than a 1 person tent so you aren't giving up much in that area and it's still enough room when camping for two.
    • There are some 1 person tents that are a little cheaper and pack smaller however you are trading cost for head-room and comfort.
    Rain Fly or Single-Wall?
    • This ends up being a personal choice.
    • Single-Wall tents have the convenience of a quick easy setup especially in the rain as the tent walls also act as a Rain Fly. These tents can also become hot in warmer climates as the ventilation is not typically as good as a tent w/fly that can be removed.
    • Tents with Rain Flys do pack larger and require extra effort to setup and take down but, as mentioned above, provide additional comfort options.
    • There are several configurations of tents available.
    • The one that we here at recommend the most are the free-standing tents. A free-standing tent is one that, once the poles are connected to the tent, it stands in place and all that remains is to stake it down.
    • They are the easiest to move to another location if necessary just in case conditions require a quick relocation of the campsite. We've been in low lying areas where a sudden rainstorm dictated we move. With free-standing tents it was much easier than it would have been with some other tents.
    • They are also very easy to get the dirt out of them by picking them up, with one door open, and shaking.
    • Not all Tent manufacturers sell Footprints for their tents.
    • A Footprint is basically an additional layer of material between the ground and the floor of the tent. This extents the life of the tent by preventing rips tears or abrasions which might occur from direct contact with the ground.
    • The dimensions of the Footprint, personal choice:
      • Some feel the footprint should be larger than the tent floor dimensions to keep water out
      • Some feel the footprint should be smaller than the tent floor dimensions to keep water from collecting between the tent and footprint.
      • I haven't found enough references to confirm more one way than the other but I would choose the fold any excess material under itself so it matches the tent floor size.
    Last edited by Mellow; 01-31-2006 at 07:37 PM.

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