Best Tents to buy in 2017

By February 1, 2017

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It’s a question we are often asked: “Which is the best tent to purchase?”  So we thought we would analyse some of the best tents available.

Everyone’s needs are different so we broke down the range into 4 key categories:

Single Man tents

2-3 Man tents

4-5 Man Tents

6+ Size tents

Before we start the review we wanted to share with you some of the basics specifications used to rate tents.

Hydrostatic Head – this is the waterproof level. The recommended level in the UK is 1500, but let’s be honest, we all know what the weather is like in the UK so I always recommend a higher level. Personally, I try and go for 5000, but 3000+ would be good enough.

However this is the expensive part and usually, the higher the hydrostatic head, the more expensive the tent will be. Usually, cheaper tents have a lower level some as low as 1000 – which might not keep you dry in a heavy downpour.

Double Skin – this basically means you have an inner section, usually where you sleep. The great thing about this is when it’s cold, it helps insulation and reduces condensation.

Single Skin – just a single waterproof layer protecting you from the elements, usually more breathable to help with ventilation.          

If you are unsure of where to go camping, check out our guide to best places to go camping in 2017.

Single Person tents

There are plenty of options on the market for a decent hiking tent, whether your expedition is taking you to the Lake District for the weekend or a bit further.

Our winner for the best tent is the Vango Banshee 200 Tent. Vango is one of my favourite tent manufacturers, I have used them for years with no issues, and would bracket them with Outwell.

This two-man tent is perfect for backpacking with a weight of just 2.35kg. With a hydrostatic head at 5000, it will keep you dry in any conditions. The groundsheet has a hydrostatic head of 6000 meaning you can pitch it on wet grass with no worries.

This may seem like a small deal, but I think it’s why it was our winner. You pitch outer first, which is great if it’s raining as the inside of your tent isn’t getting wet.

Supplier Price* Find Out More
Amazon £92.95 Amazon.co.uk
Go Outdoors** £109.99 http://www.gooutdoors.co.uk/vango-banshee-200-tent-p140006
Millets £140.00 http://www.millets.co.uk/tents-camping/101122-vango-banshee-200-mid-tent-green.html/877847/


2-3 Man tents

This was an easy choice – before me and the wife had kids we would be away every other weekend camping and this was our favourite tent to use.

The winner in this category is another Vango but the Omega 3 – we would use this on all our camping trips. It had a great sleeping compartment with a double skin, but also a porch for storing your gear while camping.

We always found using the side door would give us more storage space. As with the previous tent, this one has a 5000 hydrostatic head and a 6000 hydrostatic ground sheet, another reason we loved and trusted it.  When using this tent we experienced some horrendous weather but the tent survived everything.

 

 

Supplier Price* Find Out More
Amazon £179.99 Amazon.co.uk
Go Outdoors** £179.99 http://www.gooutdoors.co.uk/vango-omega-350-3-berth-tent-p140004
Millets £240.00 http://www.millets.co.uk/tents-camping/157035-omega-350-tent.html

I do understand this can be quite an expensive purchase, especially if you are going camping for the first time, and aren’t too sure if you will like it.

Our cheaper recommendation would be the Yellowstone Ascent 3 Tent. This again has a front porch but, with its front entry, you don’t quite get the same storage room and it’s much more narrow. The hydrostatic head is 3000 so no need to worry about the rain. The tent is available on Prime for just £39.07 click here to visit Amazon.

4-5 Man Tents

I think the winner of this category came down to the price.  There are a lot of good quality tents out there for camping weekends, but the winner is the Outwell Prescot 5. The tent is available at many outlets for just £99. This is a great price for a family tent.

The tent comes with a 3000 hydrostatic head, so you can go camping all year round, and has a large living area with a bathtub groundsheet, which helps keeps out the wind and rain but makes it easier for cleaning. The tent comes with the OGR system meaning the tent can stand up to strong winds. There are two doors to the tent and like the Vango if you want to maximise your storage area use the side door.

 

Supplier Price* Find out More
Amazon £99.99 Amazon.co.uk
Millets £99.99 http://www.millets.co.uk/tents-camping/248655-outwell-prescot-5-tent.html

 

Our cheaper recommendation would be the simple Andes 4 Person Man Berth Double Skin Camping tent from Amazon. It’s got a hydrostatic head of 2000, so above the recommended level for the UK and at just £39.95 it’s a great entry tent.

6+ Size tents

As we mentioned earlier the two brands I love for tents is Vango and Outwell and our recommendation for the best family size tent in 2017 is an Outwell. The Outwell Montana 6.

The Montana 6 is a tunnel tent and is fairly easy to put up, but it has a sewn-in groundsheet to keep out the wind and rain. The tent has a hydrostatic head of 3000, but also comes with a great internal space as well as two bedrooms. There is ample height in the main living area so it is easy to stand up in.

Outwell tends to bring out a new version of their tents each year usually with some small improvement or new feature – but there isn’t much between them. If you can get a Montana 6 tent, from any year, you won’t be disappointed. One of the nice features you find with Outwell is they go the extra mile when designing the tent.  In this one, for example, there are quite a few mesh pockets to store your items. These are very handy for putting the essential items you need within easy reach, your bottle opener etc.

 

Supplier Price* Find out More
Amazon £449.99 Amazon.co.uk
Go Outdoors** £369 http://www.gooutdoors.co.uk/outwell-montana-6-tent-p384761

We hope these reviews have been useful, why not tell us in the comments below which your favourite tent is for camping.

 

 

*We check prices weekly but are not responsible for price changes. If you notice a price has changed please let us know so we can update the article.

**To get these prices you need to have a Go Outdoors Discount Card, but they cost £5 for the year – to purchase a Discount card click here

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