Tent Review: Cabelas Deluxe Tent Cot

Last year I had to stop at the Cabelas store near Chicago... every time I drive through on I-80 I HAVE to stop, it's a great place to stretch your legs... really... I picked up a killer deal on the Deluxe Tent Cot (double) in their returns department. For $125.00 I scored a brand new $300.00 tent. Put it in the back of the van and drove home happy.. Well giddy over how much I saved. Then reality set in.

This thing is BIG, folded up it will NOT fit in the back of any car, and the minivan had to have both rows of seats folded down. Plus it's heavy, the steel frame to hold two 250 pound adults is built like a tank, so it feels like you are hauling a tank. What I was after is the siren song of tent setup that takes 6 seconds and a tent teardown and pack up that takes... 6 seconds. and in this promise it completely delivers. It is the easiest camp setup and teardown you could ever hope for. and if you are setting up next to the minivan, it's great!

The night of sleep in it was wonderful. I opted for the padded mattress insert that is 1.5 inches of foam, open the windows and you have an awesome cross breeze, and the rain fly closes up fast from inside when the showers hit at night. completely zipped up it will get very warm inside. My wife loved this feature.

This tent is built beautifully out of premium materials. It oozes quality everywhere you look and the glow in the dark on the zipper pulls were a really cool surprise the first night.

If you need an instant place to sleep and takes no effort to set up or tear down and delivers a fantastic night sleep... this is the ticket. Except for one problem.

Packed up it's huge. 35 inches by 53 inches by 14 inches. and weighs at least 80 pounds. I am unable to get it in the hatchback of a civic, and it would not fit in a Pontiac Aztek without folding down the back seats. this thing is gigantic and heavy even in a packed state. and you CANT leave the mattress pad in it when folded. you must pull that out and carry that separate. so now you have a 53" wide 14" round roll along with the tent/cot. If you were thinking of getting one of these for light camping you need to stop right now and cancel your order. they are NOT for light camping as you need a pickup truck to move it. and if you have a minivan to carry it, get a mattress for the minivan and camp in the back of that instead for more comfort and better noise control.

This tent does have it's uses. Outside events where you have period tents such as reenactments or vendors at outdoor events like motorcycle rallies or car shows will live this tent as it can be set up instantly inside your vendor tent for very comfortable sleeping while keeping the bugs away. This is a very small market tent only usable by people that have the need to set up a tent to sleep in quickly but have a large vehicle to carry it around in. In fact I am trying to figure out how to make a small motorcycle trailer to carry this tent. if I can "trailerize" it easily it could become a fantastic tent for motorcycle camping where a great night sleep is important.


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