What Size Tent Do I Really Need
Sizing your tent by Number of Men
When you are deciding on your camping tent size you will see camping tents categorized by one man or two man and so on. Camping tent size is categorized by the number of men that will fit in sleeping position shoulder to shoulder on the floor with no additional sleeping gear. This does not necessarily leave room for each camper’s camping equipment or your camping supplies. Your camping gear and camping supplies will need to be figured into your camping tent size additionally.
The floor is not going to be square in many camping tents. A camping tent that you are looking at could be rectangular and will fit only the man size that is claimed. This would leave no room for your camping gear and supplies. If the shape of the camping tent is not square then you can figure an additional man size for each additional three campers for your camping gear and camping supplies.
Sizing Your Tent by Length and Width
When deciding on a size of camping tent using sleeping bags as a reference can help make it simple. Each adult sleeping bag is generally 2.75 foot by 6 foot. If your camping tent is 4 feet by 6 feet “24 square feet” you will have no head or foot space and just enough room to roll over. You will have to leave your camping gear and supplies outside the camping tent. If you add additional space for your camping gear and head space 4 feet. This will increase the tent size to 49 square feet. In a camping tent with a square floor this would be 7 feet by 7 feet. This is not a whole lot bigger but increases the square footage enough to have plenty of space for you and your camping gear. Multiply the 49 square feet by the number of adult campers staying in the tent and this will give you a rough estimate of a comfortable square footage needed for your tent. Keep in mind that many tents will not have a perfectly square floor space.
Camping Tent Materials
While you are picking a camping tent choosing one with the right materials is very important. There are several different materials available and depending on what climate and time of year you will be tent camping in will help you decide which tent fabric to choose.
Man made fabrics like polyethylene are more waterproof but do not breath and are not very flexible. This will make it more difficult to fold and store your camping tent. Nylon and polyester on the other hand are very durable and more flexible but is not naturally waterproof unless water sealed with a treatment. Nylon and polyester are also very light, breaths well, and will not rot. Polyester has an added benefit over nylon in that it is more resistant to sunlight “ultraviolet light” damage. This will help your camping tent to last longer when exposed frequently to direct sunlight.
Camping Tent Care
Like any of your other tent camping equipment you want your camping tent to last as long as possible. Using a tarp under your camping tent will protect the bottom from sharp objects and help keep it dry. You should treat your camping tent with a waterproofing sealer, keep it out of direct sunlight as much as possible, and drying your camping tent well before putting it up for storage. This will help to keep your camping tent in good shape for years to come.
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