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Car Camping tent for 2 adults?

I’d normally just walk into an REI store and ask this, but given the COVID19 I’m hoping you can help me out online.

Looking for a car camping tent for 2 adults.  3 season is fine.  Might use it a hand full of times per year.  Considering the following.  Any thoughts on the best option?

REI Co-op Half Dome 3 Plus Tent
- REI Co-op Half Dome 4 Plus Tent - do I need the extra space over the HD 3?
- REI Co-op Base Camp 4 Tent - is it worth the price increase for my purposes? 
- REI Co-op Camp Dome 4 Tent - Good price as discontinued.  Am I going to miss not having vestibules? 
- Kelty Discovery 4 Tent - low cost, will it hold up?

Any thoughts much appreciated.

Thanks.

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Re: Car Camping tent for 2 adults?

@skx013k2 great information, and super helpful to give you some recommendations!

Let's start with a few tents:

  • REI Co-op Half Dome 3 Plus - because you've got the 6' tall individual, the "plus" model of the Half Dome tents will give nice extra length. No real need to go with the HD 4+, unless you need to accommodate another human or pet(s) or just simply want lots of space! Not really cot-compatible (you won't be able to sit up on the cot in the tent). Full rain-fly for rainy days, good amount of mesh on the tent body for warmer days. Don't forget the footprint!
  • Marmot Limelight 3 - good length, lots of mesh for warm weather, full rainfly for wet weather. Similarly not cot-compatible. Footprint is included!
  • REI Co-op Grand Hut - tall enough for standing and cot-compatible. Full rain fly for wet weather, good mesh for warm temps. Again, don't forget the footprint.
  • The REI Base Camp will likely run too warm/muggy in your humid weather (less mesh on the tent body), the REI Camp Dome does not have a full-coverage rainfly (not great for wet weather), and the Kelty Discovery 4 only has 1 door (which can be frustrating for 2 adults trying to maneuver around each other).

Let us know if these recommendations raise any additional questions. And we'll respond again with sleeping pad recommendations next!

At REI, we believe a life outdoors is a life well lived.
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Re: Car Camping tent for 2 adults?

@skx013k2 we would love to give you advice on this! But before we can, a few questions that will help us narrow down your choices:

  • Where are you and is that where you'll be doing most of your car camping?
  • Do you anticipate lots of rain? Heat? Other interesting environmental factors we should know?
  • Do you want to be able to stand up fully in the tent?
  • Any strong feelings about price, weight, specific features?

Once we hear back, we'll get you a few great recommendations!

At REI, we believe a life outdoors is a life well lived.
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Re: Car Camping tent for 2 adults?

  • Pennsylvania - camping would likely be in mostly PA, NY, MD, and maybe Maine.
  • It can get humid in summer.  Rain possible, but not lots.  Typical 3-season PA weather for the most part.
  • Don’t need to stand up.  Would like enough room to sit up comfortably (on the floor) and maybe (but not required) to use a cot.  Because it’s for car camping, I’d prioritize space over portability.   However, it’s for 2 people total.  
  • I’d like to keep it in the $250-$300 range, but could go up to $400 if it substantially increased what I was getting.   Weight - not a primary concern.  Maybe need to carry the tent 50-100ft max from car to campsite.  Do not plan on backpacking with this tent.  

Also, if you have a recommendation for sleeping pads to go with the above that would be great.  Comfort over portability.  6 ft male and 5’6” female - both average size.  

 

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Re: Car Camping tent for 2 adults?

@skx013k2 great information, and super helpful to give you some recommendations!

Let's start with a few tents:

  • REI Co-op Half Dome 3 Plus - because you've got the 6' tall individual, the "plus" model of the Half Dome tents will give nice extra length. No real need to go with the HD 4+, unless you need to accommodate another human or pet(s) or just simply want lots of space! Not really cot-compatible (you won't be able to sit up on the cot in the tent). Full rain-fly for rainy days, good amount of mesh on the tent body for warmer days. Don't forget the footprint!
  • Marmot Limelight 3 - good length, lots of mesh for warm weather, full rainfly for wet weather. Similarly not cot-compatible. Footprint is included!
  • REI Co-op Grand Hut - tall enough for standing and cot-compatible. Full rain fly for wet weather, good mesh for warm temps. Again, don't forget the footprint.
  • The REI Base Camp will likely run too warm/muggy in your humid weather (less mesh on the tent body), the REI Camp Dome does not have a full-coverage rainfly (not great for wet weather), and the Kelty Discovery 4 only has 1 door (which can be frustrating for 2 adults trying to maneuver around each other).

Let us know if these recommendations raise any additional questions. And we'll respond again with sleeping pad recommendations next!

At REI, we believe a life outdoors is a life well lived.
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Re: Car Camping tent for 2 adults?

@skx013k2 on to ground pads! This will be a little more nuanced because there are a lot of personal preferences when it comes to what's comfortable for sleeping on the ground! We'll provide some suggestions and offer a few resources, and then be open for more dialogue if additional questions arise!

First, you might read this article on picking a ground pad to try to narrow down what "kind" of pad you'd prefer. Filled with air? Or self-inflating? Horizontal or vertical baffles? These are personal preferences and neither is better or worse than the other!

A few recommendations for ground pads, assuming you are sleeping on the ground:

  • REI Co-op Camp Bed - this is a self-inflating pad (little to no puffing needed), 2.5" thick (comfy), high r-value (warm). The XL size is plenty long for your tallest person! That said, it's also 5lbs+ (heavy) and bulky when packed up.
  • REI Co-op Kingdom Insulated Air Pad - this is 2.75" thick, with an integrated hand pump (not self-inflating), r-value at 3.5 and comes in 2 lengths to accommodate different sizes of people! These are on clearance so inventory may run out quickly.
  • Nemo Cosmo 3D Insulated Air Pad - this is 3.5" thick (comfy), has an integrated foot pump for easy inflation, 3.3 r-value and is available in several lengths/widths.

Let us know if you'd like information/advice on cots and/or pads to use with cots!

 

At REI, we believe a life outdoors is a life well lived.
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Re: Car Camping tent for 2 adults?

Thank you!  Extremely helpful.  I’ll be placing an order this week.  

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