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Eureka Tetragon 5 Tent, A Product Review
I have to admit I didn’t come around to tent camping for a long time after I began my outdoor career. For me, I was strictly a truck camper. Outfitted with a camper shell and a thick, cozy air mattress, my truck was my portable, protective cabin. I really didn’t see the need for tent camping nor did I see the attraction to it. Too many camping trips I had been on when a sudden thunderstorm tore my fellow camper’s tents to shreds in the middle of the night and I slept like a baby while lightning cracked all around me.
Then one day, I joined a group on a backpacking trip through the wilds of New Mexico where sleeping in my truck was impossible. I didn’t own a tent but managed to borrow one from a friend. It was a Eureka shaped like an “A” and easy to pitch. But how would I sleep? Would it storm and leave me scrambling somewhere for cover? Would a bear rip the nylon to bits and eat me? Or would the whole thing simply collapse? Those were the real questions.
When night fell after a long day of hiking, I crawled in to this thin shelled shelter and was totally skeptical about having a good night. I inched in to my sleeping bag, took a few deep breaths, closed my eyes, and waited.
Then a strange thing happened. It was a warm night and I was getting hot. I unzipped the door and as I did, the whole New Mexican sky unfolded before me. I slumped back in to the tent, placed my head near the tent door, and lie there watching stars do what stars do. A cool breeze blew over my cheeks and the only thing I could hear was the usually annoying but not that night chirp from a cricket. At that moment, the magic of sleeping in a tent totally consumed me and I knew I was hooked. I quickly drifted off to sleep without one thought of bears or storms. It was an experience to sleep in the tent and not just a place like in my truck. It gave me a sense of being vulnerable but at the same time made me feel comfortable. It was an adventure. And that was something a lot more fun than camping out of my truck. When I got home, the first thing I did was order a Eureka tent.
I have owned several tents since my first Eureka but my most recent Eureka tent is the Tetragon 5. This is a two person, rectangular dome, 3 season tent that I bought in 2006 for about $50.00 which is at the low end in pricing for a tent but this tent is not low end. The minimum weight of the tent is 5lbs 13oz so it’s too chunky for backpacking but great for car camping. The high quality stitching and durable polyester taffeta make this an extremely well made tent. I like the dome tents because they are low profile enough to shrug off the wind yet high profile enough to keep me from scraping my head on the ceiling when sitting.
This Eureka Tetragon 5 tent is a pleasant, blend-in-to-nature green color and came with the tent body, 2 shock-cord fiberglass tent poles, 1 carry bag, 1 tent fly, 2 shock-cord fiberglass brim rods, 1 stake bag with stakes, 1 pole bag, 2 storage pockets, 1 sewn-in gear loft, and an instruction sheet. I happen to like the sewn-in gear loft because I tend to carry a lot of stuff in to my tent when I am camping and the loft is a great place to store the items away. And the mesh panels for clip in accessories is also handy. However, the “general purpose” stakes are really too flimsy as lightweight stakes are for pitching a tent in rocky terrain but that’s not uncommon for most tent makers. And Eureka advises steel stakes for these conditions.
This tent is easily pitched by one person once you get the hang of it. Like anything, there is a learning curve. Once inside the tent, you have the option to open or close the windows with zippered flaps and the high/low venting assures proper ventilation. The tent fly is easily draped over and clipped on to the tent poles once erected. The brim over the twin track, side opening door offers protected entry while the brim over the rear window offers additional ventilation. A bathtub floor protects against splashing rain.
If you’re looking for a new tent, I highly suggest the Eureka Tetragon 5 tent or any Eureka tent for that matter. You’ll get a reliable tent for a reasonable price. I still camp in my truck occasionally but when I can and particularly on dark starry nights, I pull out my Eureka, pitch it in just the right spot, climb in, and relax. There’s no better way to spend a night in the outdoors.
Pack size 4"X25"
Dome center height 4'
Area size 35 sq. ft./7'X5'
Pole size 7.9mm
Fabric: Wall 75D polyester taffeta 800mm
Fly 75D Storm Shield polyester taffeta 800mm
Floor 75D polyester taffeta 800mm
Mesh 50D No-See-Um