In the fall of last year, as Slice (the Cool Tears teardrop) was nearing completion, I began the search for a high-quality tent for my girls to utilize. (For tips on camping with kids, check out this article from Outsidehow. My first thought was Randy & Kim at Family Tent Camping. These folks are in a word AMAZING! They run a full-service website catering to all genres of the camping industry. We ran a story on Randy & Kim in the May 2017 issue of Cool Tears and you can read it here.
As we talked over my needs in a tent, they led me to the Oz Tent series. Now, let me state this clearly, this is not your run-of-the-mill Walmart tent, nor does it come with that price tag. The Oz Tent was created in the Outbacks of Australia with the Overlander in mind. This tent is serious. It's high-quality, top-dog, best in it's class. But, it caught my attention the most when I realized it can be set in in SECONDS. Knowing, we will be traveling often and need quick overnights, the idea that the girls can get their space ready in just minutes was a huge draw for me.
I will post a few official specs from the website but in my layman's terms let me explain the tent to you. It is constructed of a metal frame - none of this spring loaded put together wimpy stuff - and the frame does not break down super small. That's how it goes up so fast. The only down side of the frame is that it requires the tent to be encased in a bag that is larger than most tents. Most people store the tent on a roof rack, but I was able to create the perfect space in my under-floor storage that I built on my camper.
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The canvas is not your usual tent canvas, but is heavy-duty, weather proof and fire resistant. I was surprised at how breathable it is inside the tent in spite of the heavy canvas. That might be due in part to the HUGE windows (with bug proof screens) that are all over this tent. The back boasts a large opening, along with both sides and the door can also be left open with a screen door. It was fun to find all the little bonuses on the tent...like an opening for an electrical cord and the cute pockets that hang on the frame for extra storage.
Speaking of storage, even with a full size bed in the tent, there was plenty of extra space. In fact, on a particular windy morning, I moved my chair inside the tent and hung out with the girls while I drank a cup of coffee. There are side walls that can be added to the canopy, but we have not yet utilized our canopy as it wasn't really needed when we camped in the fall.
Now, the 30-second thing. It's true that from the time you open the bag until the tent is standing that it's only 30 seconds. But, you do need to stake down the tent which took more time. The great thing about staking it down was the tent has built in pouches with high-quality, bright colored ropes in them all around the exterior which made securing the tent quick and painless. The tent came with a substantial amount of stakes and extra ropes as well.
So bottom line...it's totally worth the money if you plan to camp often with extra people. Our teardrop will be on the road much of the time in 2018 and I am convinced this tent is going to make my life much easier. My girls LOVE hanging out inside it and already know how to set it up and tear it down.
Did I convince you? Check it out at Family Tent Camping and be sure to use the code "teardrop5" at checkout for an additional 5% off your purchase!