Coleman Tents: 6 Clear Reasons Why They’re Best For New Campers

What’s the first thought that jumps out to you when you think of camping? I feel it’s safe to say, that the image of a roaring campfire next to a colorful tent under a gorgeous night sky, is the norm. It’s almost as if the words “camping” and “tent” are synonymous with one another. Just doing a quick search of “camping” on Google and the first 20 images all have tents in them. Not surprising.

Coleman tents - Best for new campers

You see, when you’re out experiencing the glorious aspects of nature, there’s one thing you definitely want to have with you, and that’s something to sleep in at night. Waking up to a mosquito feasting on your face, or the gentle flowing of a newly formed stream in your sleeping bag is, shall I say, bad. I’ve tried going “tent commando” a few times in my life and I can tell you with full confidence, that I didn’t enjoy it.

So it comes as no surprise that whether or not you’re an expert in the outdoors you need a tent. But which and what type? I shouldn’t have to tell you that choosing the right tent is going to make or break your time in the wild and since not all tents are created equally, you’re going to need to choose wisely. Hence, this article.

You see, I think Coleman is one of the best tent manufacturers to choose from, especially if you’re just starting your camping adventures, so if you need advice on where to begin, you’ve come to the right place! In this article, I’ll go over the 6 reasons why you should consider Coleman as your first outdoor recreational investment. At a glance, they are –

  1. Quality and Durability
  2. Easy Set-up
  3. Affordability
  4. Variety of Sizes and Styles
  5. Extra Features
  6. Trusted Reputation

By the end of it, you should have a great overview as to why choosing Coleman Tents is right for you. Once you learn of all the available options and features, you’ll be able to make the proper decision that’ll fit your camping needs for years to come! Follow along as I go over all things Coleman!


Origins of Coleman

Before we get into the reasons why you should buy a tent from Coleman, let’s take a quick look at who they are as a company and why you should consider giving them your business. First off, I bet you didn’t know they’re 120 years old, did you? In fact, they didn’t start with tents, they got their start with gasoline lanterns way back in 1901. 2 points for longevity!

The founder, William Coffin Coleman (interesting middle name), created his own version of gas lamp, named the Coleman Arc Lantern, which led to a fairly decent milestone. For the time, his advanced lighting system provided light for the first nighttime football game west of the Mississippi! How cool!

Coleman tents - William Coleman
William Coleman tinkering with one of his lanterns circa 1920

After conquering the portable lamp business world, William Coleman was asked to turn his attention to pocket stoves by the U.S. government. WW2 was in full effect and the hungry G.I.’s needed a reliable way to eat their grub. Not only did William succeed in creating a compact and durable stove, it was deemed so successful that it ranked only just behind the Jeep in “usefulness”.

Since then Coleman has produced/sold or licensed a wide variety of outdoor and recreational equipment ranging from coolers and sleeping bags to kayaks and pop-up trailers. They’ve stood the test of time and continue to provide amazing gear and equipment. Not many other brands can make the same claim!

1. Quality and Durability

Ok enough about that, let’s get into the nitty-gritty. First, how well are the tents made? And secondly, what should you expect from them when facing the elements? Now I’m not going to sugarcoat it, Coleman isn’t top-of-the-line, nor do they claim to be, but it’s safe to say they make shelters strong enough to hold up in typical stormy weather.

Coleman tents - Quality and durability

As far as the components, most Coleman tents are made of cost-effective, yet resilient materials like polyethylene, polyester, fiberglass, aluminum, and steel. They’re lightweight and strong enough to get the job done, year after year. In fact, most, if not all, of their products come with a 1-year warranty, hopefully giving you a little peace of mind if you decide to purchase one.

What sets Coleman apart from other similar brands however is their patented WeatherTec System. It’s a combination of different features designed to keep the wind and water out; a tub-like floor, welded corners, inverted seams, taped seams on the rainfly and tent body, resistance to winds up to 35 mph (45 mph for WeatherTec Plus), and more. All of which come in handy as soon as the skies turn gray.

Now if you choose to go the super cheap route and grab a tent from Amazon, you run the risk of failure in a big way. Is saving $20-$40 worth the added aggravation of water dripping on your head from a tear in the seam after settling down for the night or having the poles snap while you’re assembling it in the first place? I think not.

New campers will face enough challenges their first time out. Relying on their tent shouldn’t be one of them.

2. Easy Set-Up

If you’ve never put a tent together, you’re missing out on the absolute anguish and frustration all newbies tend to experience. I remember my first time assembling, what I felt at the time, was an “easy” 1-person tent. I started off fine, but by the time it took to connect the poles through the loops and figure out the orientation of it all, I was about ready to burn that thing!

Coleman tents are on the opposite side of the anger spectrum, at least to me. They tend to only take a few minutes, even for first-timers, to set up, have a minimal amount of parts, and contain easy-to-follow directions monkeys can understand.

Of course, Coleman isn’t the only brand that uses tent poles, but many tents in their lineup come with pre-attached poles that cut down on the finessing of it all, another feature that stands out from the rest.

If you’re really in a hurry, some of their tents come with the “instant tent” ability at the push of a button. Everything comes pre-attached and the poles are telescopic, extending and collapsing in seconds. Total assembly time with this feature: 1 minute. Wow!

I think we can all agree the idea of camping is to get away from your problems, not add to them right? Don’t you want smooth sailing the first time out? Believe me, there are a lot of boxes to check, especially if you’re inexperienced. So when it comes to putting your camp gear together, every little bit helps!

3. Affordability

Here’s where Coleman shines while others come up short, their prices. Coleman is renowned for being one of the most budget-friendly brands on the market. They start as low as $70 for a 2-person base model. You’re not going to find anything of similar quality anywhere near that.

Be prepared to open up your wallet for other top-name brands. You can easily blow $800 on a North Face or $1,600 on a KingCamp. I don’t know about you, but that’s a bit out of my range. Most novices interested in dipping their feet in the metaphorical camping waters aren’t up for that sort of commitment. And why should you be? Who knows, maybe you’ll hate camping and vow never to set foot in a forest again!

The point is Coleman has very well-priced options that can cater to any need. The most expensive thing I’ve found on their website is $560 and that’s for an instant pop-up cabin that holds 12. Unless you’re bringing along an entire Boy or Girl Scout troop with you, I doubt you’ll need that sort of storage capacity.

If you decide to go the cheapest route possible, you will run into issues, there’s no avoiding it. Cheaper tents will feel like they’re made of paper and are constantly on the verge of blowing away in the middle of the night, with you in them! Talk about a horrible night’s sleep!

4. Variety of Sizes and Styles

Speaking of a 12-person tent, let’s go over the many types of tents Coleman provides (spoiler alert, they have 110 to choose from). Scrolling through their available options reveals they have something for everybody. Solo backpacker? They got it. Busy family that needs a lot of space? No problem. Traveling with other groups? They have something for you too.

Coleman has so many options, they even have a tent-finding feature on their website so you can narrow down your needs with a few clicks! Let’s go over the different styles of tents so you can get a good grasp of what you might want.

Dome Tents

The classic! These are the style of tents that you’ll see around every campsite. They are low to the ground, round at the top, and compact. Think of them as the general purpose, workhorse tent anybody can appreciate.

Benefits

Drawbacks

  • Low-cost
  • Easy to assemble
  • Great stability
  • Good protection from the elements
  • Many options to choose from
  • Less Spacious
  • Hard to move around in
  • Best for sleeping or laying down only, not ideal for a “hangout” space.
  • Gets crowded with multiple occupants

Overall, dome tents are a great choice for those on a budget, who only need something to sleep in and don’t mind getting up close and personally with their fellow tent mates. Soloists, couples and small families should choose this style for their first tent.

Cabin Tents

These bad boys are a step up from your traditional camping abode. They’re bigger, have ample room to walk around in, and feel more like a “glamping” option than anything else. The nearly vertical walls and 6-foot or higher ceilings make it a great choice for those who like to spread out and dig into their campsite.

Benefits

Drawbacks

  • Comfortable and spacious
  • Added options like room dividers for those who want/need privacy
  • Great “chill pad” when the weather turns or you need escape from the sun
  • Higher cost than dome, but still reasonable
  • More difficult to assemble
  • Higher profile allows wind and rain to cause a bit more havoc

If you have a big and active family, have a lot of gear or equipment, or love to sprawl out, invest in a nice cabin tent. The ability to walk in and out of them without crawling on your hands and knees every 5 seconds takes a little of the edge off if you’re not use to roughing it!

Backpacking Tents

The main advantages to backpacking tents are the travel size and weight since owners want the best for their rucksacks. When space is limited and heft matters, backpacking tents reign supreme. I remember my first, it packed down to the size of a large water bottle and weighed only a few pounds. Came in very handy during my 3-month trip through South America!

Benefits

Drawbacks

  • Incredibly small and light
  • Low silhouette is best for harsh weather
  • Few components make it easy to assemble
  • Extremely cramped inside
  • More expensive due to specialized features
  • Limited options and features due to smaller size

Backpacking tents are only for people carting in all their gear on their backs and won’t have the luxury of transporting their supplies with a vehicle. Avoid purchasing these unless you plan long treks on foot, like the epic thru-hike on the PCT or a few days in a National Park where you need to hike into your campground.

Canopy/Screen Tents and Beach Shades

More for kicking back in than sleeping, canopy/screen tents and beach shades are great for establishing common areas or setting up in spots with little to no other shade options. I guess you could sleep in them, but they are more like a side dish to your main course. Since they are so straightforward, they are heavier, cumbersome and provide limited protection.

Benefits

Drawbacks

  • Adds a layer of comfort to your site
  • Great hang out spot away from your personal items or sleeping quarters
  • Screen tents protect against insects without obstructing your views
  • Little to no protection against the elements
  • Bulky and heavy
  • No privacy
  • Added cost

If you have a few extra dollars to spend, then consider grabbing one of these for your outdoor holiday. If you have a big group or are setting up multiple camps, these come in handy for shared spaces with your neighbors. Also, if you want to keep kids out of tents and in plain view, these are best.

5. Extra Features

Now that we’ve established the macro layer of tent, let’s dive into the micro. Coleman tents have a lot of added “extras” that, if you’ve never gone camping before, you wouldn’t think to look for. Here are some of the best.

Dark Room Technology

If you’re not a morning person, have kids with early bedtimes, or are sensitive to heat, a dark room tent might be for you. These things are pretty awesome! They block out 98% of sunlight and cool the interior of your tent up to 11°s! Now they aren’t the cheapest because of what they do, but wow do they come in for the win when you need them to. Here’s a video in case you’re not impressed enough –

Room Dividers

Some of Coleman’s tents, usually the cabin style previously mentioned, come equipped with interior dividers. Friend groups that are all under one roof so to speak benefit greatly from this as well as families that would like to have their own space away from the little ones.

Fast Pitch System

If you hate hassle, find a tent with the fast pitch system included. It cuts down set-up time by about 50% since the poles are color-coded and pre-attached. Ideal for campers who want to maximize their time relaxing and avoid as much work as possible.

E-Port

If you want external power provided inside of your tent, look for those with this feature. There’s a small portal, usually in the back, that allows you to run an outside cord to the inside of your tent, without cracking a window or door. If you want to keep bugs from infesting your tent while you watch a movie, look for tents with an E-Port.

Connectable Tent System

If you want to go the extra mile and set up a mini compound, look into purchasing one of their connectable tent systems. This is a great choice for friends and family who are tight-knit and want to stay close to each other while also maintaining their separate sleeping spaces. Check out the 6-person version below.

Awning/Vestibule Add-On

For extra space or protection from the sun without buying a second unit, choose a tent that comes with an awning or vestibule built right in. The added safeguard is great to store coolers, plop down a chair, or store extra gear that you don’t want to keep inside with you.

6. Trusted Reputation

There’s a reason Coleman has been around for more than 120 years. You know what you’re getting when you buy one of their products. It’s going to work, plain and simple, and if it doesn’t you can return it without issue.

It’s also a one-stop shop for other camping and hiking gear if you would like to expand your recreational horizons and go a little deeper into acquiring equipment. All of their stuff is fairly priced, reliable, and long-lasting.

Don’t believe me? Check out the reviews of this popular product of theirs on Amazon. There are more than 22,000 reviews, averaging 4.5/5 stars! I’m no customer service expert, but if I was the manager of a restaurant and 22,000 people went out of their way to tell me how delicious our food is, I’d know I’m doing a great job.

Final Thoughts

Ok, I know that sounded like a paid promo from Coleman, but it wasn’t. I really do feel that brand-new campers should pick a Coleman tent since they check so many boxes needed for newcomers. They’re made of quality materials, easy to set up, cheap, come in loads of styles and options, and have many features that won’t let you down. How can you ask for more?

Even if you’ve gone on a few camping trips and aren’t starting from scratch, take a moment and see if any of their tents fit the bill. I’ve never tried their dark room tent, and I think that’s going to be my next pick!

As always, be safe anytime you step out of your comfort zone. I wish you a fabulous time on your next camping adventure! Enjoy!

Author

  • James Ryan

    A seasoned hiker and adventurer who loves to travel and experience new things. An extrovert and creative at heart, James is most definitely a "People Person". He started this blog in the hopes of making somebody's day just a bit brighter!

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