I've tent camped for over 30 years now, with 22 years Army Reserve adding to that. Tents these days are made from much different materials, in different styles, and have advanced features that didn't exist when I first started.
The Coleman Cimmaron is a large tent, certainly the largest I've ever used. It's rated for 8 - which in the Army would be accomplished by correctly stacking the inhabitants. Nonetheless, it's certainly roomy enough for 6 and almost luxurious for 4, my intended use.
This tent isn't one to quickly pitch singlehandedly, I previously had a Daisy geodesic that could be put up by one - but it lacked good air circulation, would leak in hard rain, and did not have a coated tub floor. It was at best a fair weather tent. This one is different, with multiple poles that assemble easily, and which provide a lot of headroom. Very little crouching and crawling around is necessary, which a shorter 9x7 "four" man tent would require. The tent assembles easily enough, the rain fly attaches quickly, and the ventilation in full sun on a 93 degree day with 65% humidity was the best I've enjoyed. If there was a breeze, you could feel it, and the heat soak from full sun was minimal, unlike OD canvas. Instead of radiating from the full surface of the fabric, you only feel the directional impact of the sun.
Few sleep their day away in tents in the full sun, but humid nights are a constant hazard in the South and Midwest. The open ventilation, including the ground level vent, ensures you will get some chimney affect to dump the heat, and you can control it when you need.
This isn't a cool weather tent, tho, and we anticipate using it in the high desert at the Grand Canyon. Previous experience has taught me that tents aren't known for their insulation, you reduce the passage of air. This tent does that by zipping all the windows closed - but it's a tradeoff, as the full net roof will allow some heat to escape. I chose this over using one with a cool season ability, because the hot weather circulation is a higher priority with typical summertime vacations.
Overall, the construction shows attention to detail, the cordage is sufficiently strong, but the tent pegs aren't. I'll substitute the more expensive heavy duty plastic pegs as they are nearly hammerproof. A 36 oz dead blow gets the job done in compacted campgrounds. This model has a power cord port, interior pockets, a center ring to hang a light or fan, and a center loft net to hold small items. The net hooks weren't sewn on well, the one flaw I've found overall.
The roof design doesn't drape and pool water, a welcome change to the practice of my fellow soldiers and children timing a good shove on the roof as I pass by. I wonder how they learned that?
In general, I'm pleased with the construction and expected the larger size to be more complicated than a simple backpacking tent. It is, but it goes up with less effort or special technique than the geodesic. It disassembles easily, and if you read the directions, stowing the fly inside the tent makes for a compact bundle to zip into the carry bag, which is superior for handling and travel. Our last tent had a sack that didn't protect it well. I can see this tent will likely serve us better than the last one did.
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