Bell Tent

So we popped the 3 metre bell tent up in the garden.

test bell tent

We had to attach the guy ropes.  We couldn’t pull them straight out as we ran out of garden, but we sort of got the idea.  Then we put it up again when we went away.  I say we put it up, but my son put most of it up and my daughter helped peg it out.

bell tent

And here’s a closer shot of the inside.

Inside of the bell tent

As you can see, it has plenty of room to sleep in.  We could easily fit three sleeping mats in.  We only need it for one or two.  The headroom isn’t brilliant.  You can stand up in the middle and can probably fit two people in chairs quite close to the centre, but we don’t really need too much headroom.  We didn’t use it much as there was only the three of us and the weather was fair.  We need it more when there are four of us or when it’s wetter.

It rained for a little while and seemed fine and though we didn’t get it back in the bag with the poles the first time, we did manage to get it back in the bag with the poles the second time.

Okay, so the not so positive bits.  Putting the three poles in is obviously trickier than the one, though it leaves more room in the tent.  Unfortunately, you need to get in the tent, which is a bit like going under a blanket and what I hadn’t thought about was that I don’t like enclosed spaces much.  So, I kind of need to grit my teeth before going in and ask someone to hold up the entrance so I can still see out.  I’m sure I’ll get used to it in time especially with my children’s help.  It just wasn’t something I thought about before I bought it.  On our old tent the poles were on the outside.

I’ll report back on what it’s like once we’ve used it a bit more in a variety of weathers and got used to putting it up and down.

We did see some other campers with a five metre bell tent which looked enormous.  From what I could see they had an inner taking up half the tent and it had two doors to it so it looked like they could fit four people in half the tent an it obviously had a lot more headroom too.  Far too big for use with a camper van though.  The mini bell fits nicely in the back and we’ve started to work out where we’ll pack everything in the camper van.

I’ll tell you more about our trip over the next week.

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4 thoughts on “Bell Tent

  1. I seem to remember bell tents from the Girl Guides decades ago. Yours looks much nicer though. We didn’t have sewn-in groundsheets (if that’s a camping term?) for one thing.

  2. That’s the right term, SIG sewn in groundsheet, or you can buy a separate one. I have a ZIG, zipped in groundsheet so I can unzip it and roll up the sides if it ever gets warm enough or if it rains lot I can separate the top from the bottom. They’re supposed to be very good in the wind and because its canvas they keep the warm in a little more and the hot sun out, though canvas takes a lot longer to dry. We camped the other year in a few hot days in August and the heat in a plasticy/polyester tent was fierce. We ended up sitting in amongst a small clump of trees and then bought a canopy to shelter under. We had ridge tents that leaked at our Girl Guides. We had to huddle together in fewer and fewer tents until the leaders gave in and brought us back early. Definitely not where I got my love of camping from.

  3. Don’t think I’d like the inside pool thing either, for pretty much the same reason. All of our tents (3) from our camping days (when we younger) had the poles that were attached to each other with cord…can’t think what’s thats called at the moment. We used to camp for 3 weeks at a time…good times. It’s important to be able to set up quickly, as we have many a time while it was raining. My camping days are behind me know…I tell hubby my cards been punched. The trouble we’ve had trying to use a GPS on the phone is…when we need it most, we’re typically out of cell phone range….argh.

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