Time to think about a new tent…

We should probably start talking about what kind of tent or tents we should bring.

After outlining our basic itinerary, it looks like we will be camping out for about 21-28 days, more or less, depending on if we choose motels or campgrounds along some parts of the route. And the camping will vary from well-equipped campgrounds to truly remote, primitive backcountry camping with zero facilities. In some cases we will be able to camp right next to our jeep, and in a few cases we may have to hike in, carrying our gear, to interior backcountry campsites.

Another important consideration is that we will be constantly on the move, almost never spending more than one night at the same campsite. (HINT: ease of set-up/breakdown is probably important to us)

Additional things to think about… It will be HOT… extremely HOT… in many of the locations where we will be camping. There is also a chance of windy conditions in the canyons. And likelihood of violent thunderstorms (meaning heavy rain), in a number of the western locations. And the certainty of rain somewhere…

We also need to think about whether we get one BIG tent (which would necessarily be heavier) or two smaller tents (which will be lighter, and give us some additional space, but require double set-up).

I have just started looking around online, and at first glance am favoring the idea of getting two tents.

The “main” tent, will be one of the bigger ones that is really solid, and in which we could actually stand, or where the 3 of us could sit comfortably inside if  we find ourselves stuck in the rain for a stretch. It should be well-made, really water-proof and with a profile that will not easily be blown over. However, this would not be something we could easily carry to “backpack” hike-in sites. and I doubt it would be really quick to put up and take down.

The “second” tent would be a smaller, lighter one, similar to the kind we have always used. This “second” tent is easy to put up and down (as we know from experience) and light enough to carry. The drawbacks with the small tent are: first,  it is a “tight fit” as we are three full size people now… (remember it is going to be really HOT out there); second, in heavy rain it is not likely to be so good (remember how we always had to “flee” to motels when there was a big storm… and think about the locations where we will really be in the middle of nowhere with no motels to flee to… and at 100+ degrees it is out of the question that we hole up in the jeep…); third, the zippers on those tents were pretty bad, if i recall, and we are going to be using it pretty regularly for 6 weeks… Of course, as this smaller tent would only serve as a “second” tent, maybe we don’t need to deploy it “every” night…

Of course, the problem with two tents is they take up more space in the jeep…

Here are some relevant links on tents:

3 Responses to “Time to think about a new tent…”

  1. Blue Coyote says:

    Actually just saw this Eureka Copper Canyon tent on amazon…

    seems like it could do well as our main tent (click the link above then scroll down to read the reviews)… what do you think?

  2. cactusKiller says:

    J’ai regarde un peu mais c’est difficile de voir …. la tente que tu as choisie est grande et c’est vrai qu’on doit passer du temps dedans et aussi qu il peut pleuvoir et peut etre meme de grosses pluies … donc c’est vrai que c’est mieux … mais elle me parait lourde …
    Le probleme c’est qu’elle ne peut pas etre legere et solide en meme temps … donc je crois qu’il va falloir choisir quelque chose comme ca …

  3. Blue Coyote says:

    what about the idea of taking also the smaller light tent for the places we have to walk-in and carry it?

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