Learn how to find a new dome tent
If you’re interested in finding a good dome tent for your next camping trip but aren’t all that keen on going through all the informational material available online, then we’re here to help. We’ve consulted dozens of dome tent reviews, consumer reports and product comparisons to arrive at a set of conclusions that might prove useful in your search. First things first, the model we recommend the most is the Coleman Steel Creek 2000018059, which garnered a lot of positive feedback from specialists and owners alike due to its good waterproofing, large size, and not in the least, the mesh porch that provides for some extra comfort. For all its qualities, the Steel Creek comes at a relatively affordable price. If this product is unavailable in your region, you can go for the Core Equipment 40003 as a viable alternative.
There’s hardly a one-size-fits-all best tent for camping since not everyone values all product details the same way, and different people tend to have different needs. Dome tents are generally appreciated for the low effort it takes to set one up and for the spacious interior they provide, at least relative to their size when packed. What other things are there to consider when shopping for one?
The best dome tent is supposed to offer enough comfort for a good night’s sleep while camping regardless of the weather outside. This means good rain protection, good ventilation so that the air doesn’t get stale, and if possible, some measure of thermal protection for cold winter nights.
Waterproofing is generally done by adding a special repellant coating to a polyester material. Since this also helps retain heat, it might act as a liability during summer months, so most manufacturers choose to offer a removable tarp for rain protection, with only the floor of the tent itself being water repellant.
Some opt for a double layer design, with a thin inner layer encased in a resistant outer shell, but this might not be practical with larger tents due to cost and difficulties in setting one up.
This is mostly a matter of user preference and personal need, but we would remind you that larger units tend to provide more comfort, even if the number of people you expect to be using it doesn’t necessarily call for the extra space.
If you expect to spend any significant amount of time in the tent, then look for it to allow enough room for small everyday activities, like changing clothes or preparing food away from pesky insects.
Headroom is also something to look for. Even if people don’t usually stand inside a tent, having a low ceiling always makes for a very uncomfortable feeling.
Small things, like a slit that allows you to run electrical cables inside the tent, reflective guy lines, so you don’t stumble upon them in low light, or proper ventilation, when it is raining, can make a lot of difference while out camping.
Also check that the tent is easy to set up and pack (which should be a given with a dome set-up) and all necessary pieces, such as guy lines or aluminum rods are provided for.
Coleman Steel Creek 2000018059
The element which brought this Coleman product the most praise from owners is its mesh covered porch, which easily fits three adults and three chairs to provide for a comfortable, bug-free resting area during the summer.
With a base of 10 x 9 ft, there’s plenty of room for up to five people to sleep comfortably, while 5.8 ft. of headspace at center point won’t make you feel like there’s constantly someone leaning over your shoulder.
As users who put it through the trials can attest, it provides good rain protection, with the sleeping area covered in a water resistant fly and the screen section featuring a mesh floor to prevent water from gathering.
The only complaint we found regarding this product is that the electrical cable access slit can’t be closed shut, but this can be easily remedied with some duct tape if bugs happen to find a way through (which only seems to have happened to one owner).Buy from Amazon.com for ($147.97)
Core Equipment 40003
The people at Core Equipment have put a lot of thought into user comfort and convenience when designing this tent.
It features a number of inside pockets and a gear loft so you won’t have to leave your items lying around the tent. The mesh window on its door has its own covering for extra privacy, and the electric cable access port can be fully closed when not in use.
Judging by customer experience, it holds very well to windy weather and rain, while it also features an innovative ground air ventilation system for summer months. Two air intakes placed near the bottom draw cool air from near the ground, while the mesh roof allows warm air to escape.
Its size is good, with 6 feet of maximum headroom and a base big enough to fit six adults in sleeping bags or two queen-sized mattresses.Buy from Amazon.com for ($91.37)
YONOVO Easy Up Instant
For a couple or a solitary camper, small packing size and ease of installation might be more important than a roomy interior. This YONOVO instant set-up tent addresses just those needs, while also providing great air-flow during summer months at no expense to privacy.
Its rigid frame comes pre-installed, and you’ll only be required to unfold it in order to set it up. This makes it a great tent for short trips or for crowded areas, where you won’t risk annoying any of the other campers with your extensive preparations.
Cross-ventilation is provided through two doors and two mesh pockets, which you can cover with a rain fly if the need arises.
While it can hold its own through heavy rain, a number of users felt the need to mention that this tent is best fit for warm weather, since its outer covering doesn’t do a stellar job at keeping the air in.
Given its very affordable price, we consider that all weather functionality might be expecting too much from it.Buy from Amazon.com for ($109.99)