It is often said that camping is the answer, irrespective of what the question is. But there are indeed many questions to consider when venturing into the camping world – one of the most important being which type of tent to choose? Mary Willemse looks at some important questions and considerations around dome tents.
Dome tents are the most popular tent option due to it being relatively inexpensive and easy to use. Designed for a vast range of uses and conditions, they are ideal for those who do a mixture of overnight/weekend trips or those who do not stay in one place when on a camping holiday. Choosing the appropriate dome tent doesn’t need to be too difficult, but to narrow your search, we looked at some critical questions to consider
What do you want to use it for?
This is an extremely important question to ask as no single tent will suit all uses and conditions. Do you plan on using it for extended periods in summer at a camping ground? Do you want to use it while travelling around in a car or for use on weekend trips? Or do you want something light enough to carry in your pack while you hike to a camping spot?
Does size matter?
The next question is how big do you need the tent to be? There are obviously advantages and disadvantages to each size of tent. Large dome tents have more liveable space but are heavier, bulkier, and take up more room in both the campsite and your vehicle. Conversely, smaller dome tents offer the opposite advantages and disadvantages. If you have a family of four, then you may need a multi room tent, but if it is for one person you could get away with a smaller option. The size of the tent should be relative to how much room you need to be comfortable on a camping trip.
In what conditions will the tent be pitched?
Not all tents are created equal in terms of strength and durability, therefore anticipating the environmental conditions in which it will be used is important to understand. Large tents are not designed for gale force winds in general, as bigger tent walls have a greater surface area against the wind, which in turn places added stress on the tent frame. With this in mind, most dome tents will stand up to strong winds in camping grounds if pitched correctly, but those made from nylon are not designed for wilderness conditions. Any of Tentco’s dome tents (or canvas tents) will be suitable for Southern Africa’s normal weather conditions. However, we do suggest you avoid pitching your tent in violent weather conditions; they are not designed to cope under such pressure.
What is your budget?
There is a massive range of domes available and, with that, of course comes a broad range of prices. In terms of specific aspects, you do get what you pay for, but under normal weather conditions all Tentco tents offer adequate shelter against the elements. The variations in pricing generally come down to a few factors. The bigger the tent, the higher the price, which is associated to the amount of fabric, workmanship, and structural material needed to make it. The materials used in construction have an impact on price, with more weatherproof fabrics or stronger poles and materials costing more than basic materials. Other than that, the variations in price mainly come down to the features within a tent that make the shelter more comfortable. Buying the most expensive tent won’t necessarily mean it is the right tent for you, though – align your needs with what is on offer.
Camping ground dome tents
Camping ground dome tents Whether it’s a bustling camping ground over the holidays or a relaxed weekend fishing spot, there’s no doubt you will find a dome tent pitched there. Camping ground dome tents are made for predominantly sheltered conditions and their main focus is around space and comfort. Dome tents tend to include various features to improve comfort and allow for easy organisation inside. While campsite dome tents are generally quite roomy, they also include features to make living more comfortable. Examples could include roof or wall pockets for storage, anti-snag and glowin-the-dark zippers, power cord access, mesh venting systems, or roof loop cords for hanging lanterns. This style of dome is designed to make living in the camp ground or other sheltered outdoor environment easier, more comfortable and therefore enjoyable. The rooms are usually fairly large in size to accommodate an airbed or stretcher and the roof is at a comfortable height for a person standing upright (larger dome tents only).