Written by: Timothy Fitzgerald and Michael Kowlowitz
08/13/2010 3:20 PM
Tent camping is easy to romanticize. Run a Google image search with "camping" as your keyword and you will come upon myriad photos of tents perched on grassy knolls overlooking impossibly green valleys, or tents sitting on the edge of a lake with a mirror reflection, and a mountain smack dab in the center of the background. What isn't mentioned in the photos is the time and effort it took to set that tent up.
Setting up tents takes time and effort. The frame needs to be set up. Tarps need to be thrown down, stakes must be put in place. The list goes on. But although the joys of being out in nature far outweigh the burden of setting up a tent, many a camper has thought to him or herself, "isn't there a faster or easier way to setup my tent?". The answer? An enthusiastic YES!
It's called a self erecting tent or pop up tent - it has flexible hoops so that when the tent is unpacked, it springs into shape immediately, making it quick and easy to set up.
There are several main brands of self erecting tents for family camping. Pinnacle Tents has developed a range that have an unbreakable spring steel frame. These tents fold into themselves much like an accordion and fit into a bag. They range in size from 2 to 4 person and cost between $129 - $239.
Grand Trunk and Widge Ridge offer 3 season pop up tents that use a central hub system where you pull the tent up from the top middle point and it springs into shape. You can easily fold the tent in on itself and fit it into a bag when you're ready to go. They offer 3 or 4 person tents and costs range from $99-$230.
For car campers self erecting tents provide the perfect alternative to traditional tents. They assemble themselves and provide the basics that any novice tent camper would expect from a tent. Namely, shelter! After a long drive, the last thing anyone wants to do is go through the process of pitching a tent. Now, you no longer have to dread that moment. Just throw the tent in the air and you are all set!
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