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Thread: Looking for a budget tent

  1. #1
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    Default Looking for a budget tent

    Hi, first post on the site, looking for some useful information. I am going to do some fishing this summer and I am looking to purchase a budget tent. My biggest thing is it needs to be as waterproof as possible, as I am going to be going to many rain prone areas such as Valdez. I dont care about weight/single person setup/etc etc. Its going in the back of my truck to travel and I will always have someone with me. It needs to fit 3 people comfortably, keeping in mind that I am 6-4 and my brother(who will be traveling with me) is 6-7. My target is about $100 if possible, but I am willing to spend as much as $200 if necessary. I realize this wont exactly get me a luxo setup, but if there is something anyone could suggest I would appreciate it. thanks.

  2. #2
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    If you're just using it for car camping (not backpacking) I would suggest buying the largest Coleman tent you can find that fits your budget AND two seperate tarps. One tarp as close to the size of the tent's footprint that you can find (for use as a ground cloth to protect the bottom of your new tent), and a seperate tarp that is at least twice the size of the tent's footprint to string up above the tent. Use parachute cord to string the above-the-tent tarp to nearby trees. Dig trenches around the tent to prevent water from running under the tent. Comfortable and dry = happy campers.

    Good luck.

  3. #3
    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    Yep, there are dozens of tents that will suite your needs. It would be worth the added time to take whatever you buy out to the yard on a warm day and spray it down w/ a good tent water repellent, and aquaseal the seams for some cheap insurance. You sir fall into the 99% of "campers" in the country. The market is chock full us tents for your needs. You will also have good luck checking the outdoors section of Craigslist. Just dont expect them to do more than what you are asking here. If you take one of these tents in 40-50 miles by atv and get into a wind/rain storm you are going to have a very bad trip!! have fun this summer!

  4. #4
    Member danattherock's Avatar
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    Welcome to the forum.

    For budget tents, you can do no better than Kelty in my opinion. For plenty of room for three, and considering that you are car camping, I say go with a six person. I got a Kelty Trail Dome 6 a few years ago. Very easy to put up and had tons of room. Held up well in some bad rain on a NW Alaska float trip as well. Look at Campmor's website.

    You are in luck. Just got back from the Campmor website and this tent is on sale for $179!

    http://www.campmor.com/outdoor/gear/Product___23697

    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

  5. #5
    Member danattherock's Avatar
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    Actually just bought another one myself. I had gave the other one away

    Heading to the Kenai in Sept and needed another tent. Something nice, but not too nice if you know what I mean. Being out fishing during the day, I would not want to leave a very expensive tent laying around in the campgrounds. Also, I love how roomy this tent is. I am 6'6" and can stand and change clothes in it. Should be a nice fit for the three of you. Tons of room. 10 feet by 10 feet.

    Below is my order from Campmor with a few accessories that may be of use to you.



    Reliance Best Power Peg Plastic Stakes-9 inch 21776 1 3.79 3.79 (4 for tent and 2 spares)

    Reliance Best Power Peg Plastic Stakes-6 inch 21773 1 2.99 2.99 (4 for rainfly and 2 spares)

    50 Ft Gold Reflective Cord 21707 X2 @11.95 = 23.90

    Tent Mallet 26006 1 3.99 3.99

    Kelty Trail Dome 6 2 Door Tent 23697 1 179.97 179.97

    Kelty Trail Dome 6 Nylon Footprint 23709 1 14.97 14.97
    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

  6. #6
    Member 6XLeech's Avatar
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    Default Tarps are good...

    Quote Originally Posted by zeb View Post
    If you're just using it for car camping (not backpacking) I would suggest buying the largest Coleman tent you can find that fits your budget AND two seperate tarps... Comfortable and dry = happy campers. Good luck.
    Agree with Zeb's tarp suggestion for keeping dry! After having a family tent leak while camping our way to Alaska, the overhead tarp solved things. We bought an extra to make a "patio" - it rained often. The other suggestions are pearls too. Sealing seams takes time, but many good tents will leak at seams without sealing.

    End of winter sales (now), or a used tent (Craigslist, etc) seem you best bet to me. Backcountry.com has several 3-person tents over $200. Here are a couple tents worth considering:

    Here's a 4-person Kelty for $210 and free-shipping for orders over $50:
    http://www.backcountry.com/store/KEL...-3-Season.html

    And a North Face 4-person for $181:
    http://www.backcountry.com/store/TNF...-3-Season.html

    Good luck.

  7. #7
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    Default good cheap tent

    Eureka Timberlines or the Outfitters for a little more $$

  8. #8

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    I always liked the way this tent looked as far as options go for 3 people. Ought to be able to put most of your gear in the annex while and still possibly have another person in the annex if needed as well as comfortably fit 3 guys in the main part of the tent. You can pick it up for roughly 235 if you wait for the right deal to come along, which is still a little outside your price range, but I've slept in a number of Sierra Designs tents in crappy weather and have never been wet. Anyways just another one to look at.

    http://www.sierratradingpost.com/p/3...-3-Season.html

  9. #9

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    I've got a Cabela's Alaskan Guide Model tent I want to sell. It's the 6 man (6'3" height) camo outer fly version with aluminum poles. Cabela's new price is $480, and the camo version doesn't appear to be available anymore.

    Here's some info:

    http://www.cabelas.com/cabelas/en/te...107&hasJS=true

    I don't have any photos of it yet. I was going to wait until the snow was gone, set it up, and take photos.

    I'll let it go for $300.

  10. #10
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    Default Thanks for the Help

    I appreciate everyones input. I ended up going with the Kelty tent that DanatheRock suggested. Every review I could find said it was an excellent setup for the cost, and was absolutely a steal at the website he suggested. Now, onward to other gear for this summer......

  11. #11
    Member danattherock's Avatar
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    I think you will love this tent man. I regret giving my other one away. We wanted a lighter tent for our yearly float trips. Weight limits are so low on these bush flights. And my buddy has three kids and does a lot of car camping so I told him to take it. But now find myself needing a roomy tent that is not that expensive. So, here I am, buying another one. Nice guy finishing last kind of thing. Very nice tent man, you will love how easy it goes up and how roomy it is. Does good in a storm too. I was very impressed by this. Our 13 day float trip started off with three straight days of rain and high water that kept our canoes on the same gravel bar. Marked the waters edge with a large white rock and waited on the swell to go down. Three days of rain and wind, not a drop in the tent. What more could you ask for?


    Below are a few pics of our Kelty house from a recent float trip to NW Alaska.

    In the first image, my wife is 5'7" for comparison. In the second and third images, the smaller tent is a Kelty Gunnison 3 person for comparison. In the fourth image, just a big azz dolly my wife caught. That is why we were up there.





















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    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

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