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How to Choose a Tent

Updated on January 15, 2010
Warcombe Farm Camping Park
Warcombe Farm Camping Park

Camping is one of man's oldest pastimes‚ people were camping before it was known as camping and simply known as living!

There are UK campsites all over the country that fill up daily with campers looking to relax and get a little closer to nature. Camping itself is a pretty complicated thing; there's lots of planning that has to go into it. You have to take the right foods and, most importantly, the right equipment to the campsites‚ including a tent.

The Perfect Tent For A Campsite

But how do you pick a tent that's right for a certain campsite?  What do you look for in a tent? There are hundreds of sizes and styles of tents to look for so how do you know which one will be perfect for you?

First, consider the size of the tent. How many people are going to be sleeping in it? Tents come advertised as two-man, four-man, six-man tents and so on but remember‚ this is a measurement that means that's the maximum amount of people the tent can sleep with no personal items.

That means bags or other personal items brought will have no real place in the tent, which can make the tent and campsite very cramped. But then how do you know how many people a tent can really sleep without severe cramping?

It's simple: divide the advertised amount of people by 2 and you get a much more realistic idea of how big the tents are. Also, try to plan so that each person will have around 30 square feet of floor space to ensure the maximum amount of comfort.

Be realistic about the actual length or width of a tent as well. A 6-foot man will probably need at least a foot of extra length so he isn't sleeping like a sardine in a tent that's only just 6-feet long.

The same goes for height‚ always give yourself a little extra space where possible because you don't want to be hunched over in the tent when you stand. Also remember that each person will need about 2.5 feet of width to be able to sleep comfortably without being cramped.

Also add extra space for moving around the tent without waking companions,  such as a late-night bathroom trip out to the campsite, and space for those personal items just to be safe.

Also look at a tent's shape. Every campsite tent comes in four basic shapes: dome shape, wall shape, umbrella shape and A-frame. The a-frame tents are kind of like pup tents but they are some of the largest.

The umbrella shaped tent is the most commonly used tent for families at campsites because they have lots of standing room and usually even windows and rain flies. Dome tents actually come in many different designs. It actually comes down to a personal choice.

When heading to a campsite, make sure that you have the perfect tent, for an enjoyable camping trip.


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