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luxury tenting


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Initial post: Jan 14, 2011 10:09:00 AM PST
Hi, I am Scott, I tried RV'ing last summer but found it way too expensive, esp with gas prices going up, and I've got nothing that can pull a trailer, so my solution is luxury tenting - basic ingredient is a very large tent (I have a Coleman Bayside) with a Cabela's queen bed frame, air mattress, portable air conditioner, TV with HD reciever, coleman 2-burner stove with tables, Koolatron powered cooler. People think I'm nuts with the portable AC but it does work as long as the sun is not directly on the tent, and also due to where I live (steamy st louis), and it's mainly for cooling down the tent at night when I sleep. Also you do have to snake the exhaust hose outside. As you can probably surmise, the suite is for "car camping" as it is way too heavy to pack.

Posted on Jan 14, 2011 1:39:09 PM PST
But do you have carpet inside?
That is quite a setup. What kind of car do you have that it all fits inside? :)

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 15, 2011 9:45:08 AM PST
Captain says:
What is your electric source? Generator or site with electric hookup?

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 15, 2011 11:04:53 AM PST
canoeman says:
I too air-condition my tent.
We have a 10' x 14' Columbia TimberBute tent which, by-the-way, has proven to be a pretty good tent. I would not describe it as Ultra high quality but certainly not poor quality. {the Cabela quad-pole, family tent has very nice quality fabric but, the walls were not as straight up & down as I was looking for} We make sure to use a floor protector every time with ours. The tent is 6" shorter with a larger, fuller, rain-fly than the newer, red, Columbia cougar flats, I think was the name. I did quite-a-bit of work on it. Had to enclose the screened ceiling which was alot of work, sewed several woven-loops inside the tent to hang things on, PVC pipe for towel rods, colapsable frabric shelfs and, a light weight wooden shelf. A 20amp service runs a 8,000BTU window unit, a 10" TV/DVD/radio/CD combo-player and a compact floresent light hung from the ceiling. We still just use a couple of regular-ole ice chest and we prefer to cook over an open camp-fire to try to give Some simulance of actually camping-out. It's about a 2 hour set-up but, that includes EVERYTHING, from initial arival, tent-up, staking down tent and guy lines, down to airing-up matress and making the bed, to hanging-up-towels, .... everything. After weighing pros-&-cons of tent verses pros-&-cons to travel trailer or RV, My wife and I are quite comfortable and very pleased with our little set-up. We arrive at, whatever camp-ground we decide to go to, {usually a 4 to 6 hour drive}, with, comfortable, air-conditioned housing, boat and motor and, do it all out of a mini-van, not pulling nothing, no trailer, .... nota. Ment to mention, we bring a light weight, aluminum, flat back canoe with a light weight, 2 hp. 2 cycle gas motor. The canoe is strapped-down up top and we are having a blast! Wished we had started doing this years ago.

Posted on Jan 15, 2011 1:34:23 PM PST
A. Rizzo says:
Have you seen the "AC Boot". Seriously thinking about this thing. www.acboot.com.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 15, 2011 2:19:36 PM PST
canoeman says:
Cool. I had not seen that.
What I did, what I had to make myself, looks nearly identical. I cut and sewed on my own collar or, boot and, I built a little short stool with folding legs right at about the same height.
I didn't know I could have bought somthing like that.

Posted on Apr 23, 2011 2:20:47 PM PDT
Calvin Long says:
"Luxury Tenting". I believe some of the kids these days call that "staying home".

Posted on Apr 30, 2011 6:58:54 PM PDT
Possum says:
Why bother leaving your house?

Posted on Apr 30, 2011 9:20:15 PM PDT
canoeman says:
Well, I tried that but, little luck hooking a bass from my Lazy-Boy in the living room.
Why bother leaving the house? There's no kitchen or bathroom in there ya know. Look at all the Motor Homes, all the travel trailers, all the,,,,,,,,,,, home-away-from-homes rolling up & down the highways. It's a whole industry onto itself. Why bother leaving the house? ............................. Why bother leaving a comfortable house to go sleep on the ground, enjoy bug bites and, many other un-comforts. It's called luxury tenting for a reason ya know.

Posted on May 2, 2011 3:02:53 PM PDT
Wow, what a setup.

The reason to bother leaving home--to step out into the middle of the woods when you wake up in the morning. Nothing can top that!! It's the best of both worlds!!

Oh, by the way, one product you should consider--they have a fold up double sink now. I know they have them at camping world--probably other places, too. about 20 dollars, i think.
That way you can tell everyone you have everything including the kitchen sink!!!

Posted on May 2, 2011 3:38:10 PM PDT
Ottermane says:
You should see our camp--18-foot round spoke canvas, breakdown wooden table & chairs, small storage chests, vanity table with mirrored box, and canopy bed. No airco needed since the heat as 14 feet to go before it hits the roof and canvas breathes. Packed in an s-10. Takes 2-4 people to set up. Use it once or twice a year because of all the work and take the 12-foot instead. Bed doesn't fit, though.

Posted on May 4, 2011 8:23:10 AM PDT
Gotta admit, I'm still shaking my head- air conditioned tents?

What might make more sense is to ditch the tent and RV and use a cabin. Not sure what it's like where you live, but up here in Minnesota a lot of our state parks have rustic cabins in them. Most of them are pretty new, and very nice. Two bunk beds composed of a queen on bottom and twin on top provide for berths for 6 people. Electric heaters in the cabin and electricity available, otherwise you're using the same facilities as the campers in tents. Since they have windows and outlets in the place, it'd be easy to lug along an air conditioner and toss it in the window.

It might be fun to live out of Ottermane's setup, but I can't fathom taking such a beast camping. Seems like some sort of joke about how rich people "commune" with "nature." :) To each their own!

In reply to an earlier post on May 4, 2011 8:54:38 AM PDT
Have you seen the prices of cabins these days?
At least around here!
You pay for the a/c setup and such once--a cabin you have to pay for over and over again.
Plus the fact that there are a lot more choices with tents than a cabin. A cabin is where it is--as for us, we don't have the choice of waking up right on the rim in a cabin!!

In reply to an earlier post on May 4, 2011 9:04:25 AM PDT
Yeah, I have seen the prices of cabins- it doesn't cost all that much more than camping. Price probably comes out even for a lot of folks who don't camp a lot, if you factor in the price of a tent and sleeping pads for the whole family. You pay for a cabin over and over again, but you also pay for a campsite over and over again. Main exception I'm aware of is backpacking, but there is no one who is going to pack an AC and a generator to run it backpacking. :P

In every state park I've stayed at in Minnesota and many other states, you don't get free reign as to where you camp. There are designated sites which you either reserve or get to pick from when you arrive. There are more choices for non-powered tent sites than cabins, RV or powered tent sites, yes- but if you need an AC, you're going to be limited to the "modern" tent sites with electricity, which are fewer and in less scenic locations than the sites where they've had to install power.

In reply to an earlier post on May 4, 2011 12:28:30 PM PDT
Your cabins must be a lot cheaper than ours! :) Plus, we don't have to pay for our campsites. Yes, they are designated campsites (and, yes, i'm talking about car camping), and there are a lot more of these campsites than there are cabins--which makes it a much better choice. Our favorite campsite is right on the rim, there are no cabins we can choose to wake up right on the rim! The camp sites don't have electricity--that's what generators are for. In fact, the camp sites we prefer don't have close bathrooms or running water, either.

You are correct that this would be a rather expensive setup for someone who goes maybe once or twice a year. However, for someone who goes much more than that, it really does start to pay for itself. We also use most of our other items for day trips to the lake and such, and also at home. Or we take with us some home stuff to use for camping (such as a mattress topper with sheets and blankets instead of sleeping bags or cots or pads or such). Camping can get expensive, yes. But it does not have to be as expensive as people think.

Posted on May 5, 2011 1:46:58 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 5, 2011 1:53:20 PM PDT
pxlchk1 says:
Plus most campgrounds tend to only have a few cabins available. Being prepared to do it up right at a camping spot gives you more options.

We recently purchased a vintage camper (A 1968 Shasta LoFlyte) that I'm outfitting with AC/heat/TV/DVD. I intend to treat it as our mobile vacation home for my little family. Why not just stay home? Because of the travel, nature hikes, keeping the kids off the Nintendo DS, but still wanting things to be comfortable, not wondering where you'll sleep that night and if the beds will be clean is nice, too.

Posted on May 9, 2011 1:40:18 PM PDT
Frank J.G. says:
Amazing ... you totally missed the point of camping, did you not ? You might want to try to live with less dependency on these 'luxuries'. At least try to .... seems like you want to enjoy nature.

In reply to an earlier post on May 10, 2011 12:32:52 PM PDT
What really IS the point of camping?
For different people it is different things.
For some people, the point is roughing it. Not for everyone.
For a lot of people, the point is waking up to a stunning view you can't get at home, and trees and nature, and going hiking around any time you want.
Sure, someone who wants to rough it--luxury tenting isn't for them.
But for someone who wants the best of both worlds--that is where it's at!!

Posted on May 11, 2011 11:27:52 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 12, 2011 8:05:57 AM PDT
Camping Mom says:
I think that's great! There are many ways to camp, and you've found the way that works for you! We enjoy backpacking, tenting, and RVing. They all have advantages, and they are all great experiences. Anything that gets you out into the natural world can't be a bad thing!!

In reply to an earlier post on May 12, 2011 12:09:49 AM PDT
The truth is these days RVers are far more common in state parks than tent campers.

In reply to an earlier post on May 12, 2011 12:14:57 AM PDT
I think the point of camping -- whether we acknowledge it or not -- is to break up the normal routine of civilisation and return, if ever so briefly, to the state of nature we all came from.

Posted on May 13, 2011 3:47:00 AM PDT
bvanevery says:
For me the point of camping is to pay $0 rent, doing dispersed camping in the National Forests. Also getting real computer work done running my laptop off my deep cycle battery. And painting the scenery. And bonding with my dog. And seeing the nation. If you're anywhere near mountains you don't need AC. Go halfway up the mountain and find a NF road that follows a creek. You don't want to be on the crest of the ridgeline, it's too dry and hot.

In reply to an earlier post on May 13, 2011 7:42:42 PM PDT
canoeman says:
That sounds spectacular. Sounds really really neat but, I bring my wife and, all that hiking and back-packing she would never go for and frankly, I've grown rather old and fat so, doubt I'd go for it either. Camping in the heat of Texas, that air-conditioning sure is nice. If I was up north, I'd still be old and fat but, instead of an air-conditioner for my tent, I'd have heater. Camp-on my fellow campers, my fellow naturalist, motorhome go'ers, travel trailer enthuist and, climate controlled tenters, ,,, , CAMP-ON! Enjoy life while you still can, camp-on.

Posted on May 14, 2011 8:09:03 AM PDT
Nice setup, I am however concerned about electricity. Some tents can have leaking issues so you need to watch where your putting the wires. I have gone electric, but thats usually to charge my laptop, camera, phone/gps, and possibly a fan. Never to power stuff at the level described. I do have a heater but thats a Mr Heater (and its Propane) for those cold fall days, when me and my Brother like to camp. Oh and I did get a sink, think mine was one from Reliance. However, I don't use it other than the 8D battery pack that came with it.
I do take offense to the cabins statement though. Around here in Iowa a basic cabin at our state parks cost 50$, a Luxury Cabin 100$. A tent site cost 16$ for electric, and 11$ for non-electric. The rates for Minnesota aren't all that different. How is that cost comparable? I only go for a cabin when I want to get away for a couple of days and don't have the time to pitch a tent. And many parks have a 2 night minimum for cabins. Most tent sites you can stay for a night and head home. Camping also has the luxury of a community of campers who will help out, usually. And a lot of equipment can be hand me down. My grandfathers chuck-box, stove, and lantern are usually used on my camping trips, not to mention most of my parents equipment. All in all, I lug a few thousand in camping equipment when I camp but have only put in a few hundred of my own. Camping by tent is far cheaper than a cabin.

Posted on May 15, 2011 2:42:30 PM PDT
Riverwild says:
I am a registered Maine Guide and for 20 years I did the sleeping bag on the ground fly style camping, dry food and all that. I have Multiple Sclerosis now and I will be darned if I will stay home. I have a two room 16x14 tent, a double rising air bed, a portable toilet, a shower tent with battery powered hot water, a portable AC that runs off battery powered fan and blocks of ice in a cooler, a coleman cooler with a light that turns on when the cooler is opened, a camp stove, a tabletop grille and a few of those umbrella chairs and a table. It all fits inside a Chevy Aveo and the car still carries two 6 ft + people. I use a converter plugged into the cig. lighter to power stuff when needed (air pump on bed, laptop charging, phone charging, portable stereo, etc). I figure I have paid my dues and I deserve to be comfortable. I still enjoy the outdoors. Camp the way you need to camp and screw the naysayers!
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Discussion in:  Camping forum
Participants:  60
Total posts:  112
Initial post:  Jan 14, 2011
Latest post:  Sep 19, 2013

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